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How to network into your next tech job

In 2023, more than 167,000 workers at U.S.-based tech companies have been laid off. As a result, job postings are flooded with qualified candidates. There are roughly 300 job applicants for most jobs. 

I don’t mean to sound dark, but If you were recently laid off or are just looking for your next role, it’s likely a waste of time for you to apply for jobs online. Think about it. If there are 300 applications for every position, then your odds of getting selected to interview is: .33% 

Now you are probably wondering — how do I get one of the right hiring managers then? It’s straightforward: you reach them by getting introduced to them. 

These days, trust is everything, and the winners in this game are people who leverage their networks and relationships. 

Don’t believe me? This Jobvite study found that 88% of employers rate employee referral programs as the best source of applicants. 

Companies seek out referrals for apparent reasons: 

  • Referrals = $1,000 less on average than other hiring sources

  • Referrals = 25% more profitable due to higher quality of hire

  • Referrals = 55% faster to hire

Now that all agree that referrals produce the best quality of hire, the trick for you is to determine how to manufacture a referral out of thin air. Though this process may seem daunting, this post will outline every step in leveraging your network to reach the hiring managers via referral. 

Step 1)

Create a short list of jobs and companies you are most interested in. We recommend using Ventureloop / LinkedIn. Below is a template in Google Sheets that you can use to track and manage your job search. 

Job Tracker [Google Sheets]

Build a job, interview, and intro process using our free Job Tracker. 


Step 2)

From your shortlist, click on the company’s LinkedIn page. 

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Step 3)

Search for who you think the hiring manager is at the company. In companies with less than 1,000 employees, it’s not that hard to determine who the hiring manager is. In larger companies, choosing who that is is a little more complicated. In this case, it’s best to list the job posters and recruiters within that company. 

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Step 4)

Use Hifive to request introductions to these people via your connections in common. 

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Note: Whatever you do, don’t apply for the job before requesting the introduction. The reason is that many companies offer referral bonuses between $1K-$5K. So if you apply for the job and the referrer determines that you are used to the job, eliminating the possibility of them being able to make money on the referral bonus, then their incentive to help you will likely fall flat. 

You may be wondering who you should request referrals to. I’d start with: 

  1.  Hiring manager(s) - these folks often feel the pain the most because their team is understaffed and not at total capacity. Sometimes, you may even skip the phone screen with the recruiter. 

  2. Recruiter(s) - they are often measured on their time to hire, cost per hire, and quality of hire but often have less skin in the game than the hiring manager(s). Nevertheless, getting introduced to the recruiter(s) who posted the job can be a great place to start. 

  3. People in your desired role - if you want to join a company as an Account Executive, get introduced to Account Executives currently at the company. Often, after speaking with them and building a relationship, they’ll gladly refer you in. 

Here is a list of templates for the intro request and forward-able based on the job title. 


General intro request for the Connector:Screenshot 2023-08-28 at 12.35.39 PM


General forward-able for the Prospect [Hiring Manager]

Screenshot 2023-08-28 at 12.39.03 PM

Step 5)

Now that you are shooting out intro requests via Hifive, you can begin to track, manage, and nudge connectors to ensure things are moving along. 

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After you land your job, please share your story with us. We’d love to learn more about your experience and share your story with the broader relationship-led community. 


Posted August 28, 2023