How to Make Yourself Poachable

You can spend hours customizing your resume and filling out job applications to find a more challenging position. Or, you can make yourself so irresistible that employers approach you with exciting and lucrative career opportunities.

Being pinched by a rival firm is not only flattering, it can elevate your standing in the tech community and fatten your paycheck. Recruiters are constantly searching the Internet to fill open positions; are they contacting you? If not, here’s how to make yourself more poachable. 

Become a Super Star

Developing into a top performer with a successful track record automatically makes you more attractive to competing firms. Employers will “give their eye teeth” to steal a high impact player who can spur innovation, solve problems or use their technical skills to improve the top and bottom lines.

If your email inbox isn’t flooded with offers, elevating your performance to a higher level and acquiring cutting edge skills can make you an excellent prospect for poachers.

Build a Robust Personal Brand

Even a bona fide rock star can go unnoticed in today’s crowed digital world unless you tastefully toot your own horn. Since your profile or summary is the first thing a recruiter sees when they scan your CV or online profile, developing a keyword-rich tagline and compelling value proposition is the first step in putting yourself forward and garnering the attention you deserve.

Think of your personal brand as the “sole” of your digital footprint and the epicentre of a strategic marketing campaign designed to elevate your stature and career. Having a recognizable and distinct trademark that summarizes your accomplishments, what you’re known for, and what you want to become, can set you apart from other candidates.

Put Yourself Out There

If you want to be discovered, you need to hang out in the online haunts where recruiters live. They like to search professional networking and code sharing sites and scan the rosters of tech organizations and conferences to find qualified, gainfully employed professionals.

  • Put out the welcome mat by being active online and establishing yourself as a technical thought leader. Showcase your expertise by posting and reviewing code samples and sharing insightful comments and original content on technical forums and blogs.
  • Optimize your profile for keywords so it comes up in search results and stay in the forefront by refreshing your photo, building your network, garnering recommendations and regularly updating your activity, projects and work samples.
  • Make it easy for recruiters to follow your digital trail by using hashtags and embedding links to your blog, website, coding samples and online CV into your social media accounts.

Finally, show interest by following exciting companies and industry thought leaders on Twitter or liking them on Facebook. Remember, most recruiters monitor social media activity to see who’s mentioning their brand or retweeting their posts. It’s no secret that flattery is a highly effective social media marketing tool.

Test and Refine Your Online Presence and Marketing Strategy

Does your online profile or website appear on the first page of results when someone searches for Python gurus or front-end engineers? Does your profile on Stack Overflow or GitHub inspire recruiters to find out more about you? Evaluate your messaging, tactics and positioning from the perspective of a hiring manager or tech recruiter. Then, adjust your profiles, keywords and posting frequency to optimize your online presence and marketing strategy.

Declare for Free Agency

If you’re really want to attract recruiters and potential job opportunities, you need to declare yourself a free agent. Post your CV on Dice and various places around the Web, monitor your hits and refresh the document weekly to remain on top of the pile. Encourage outreach by adjusting your contact settings on professional networking sites, publishing a personal email address, and responding quickly to inquiries. If you’re really bold, create a profile on one of the new apps for people who are open to being poached or circulate your CV among trustworthy friends and colleagues.

Now that you’ve made yourself more poachable, just sit back, relax and let the jobs come to you.

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