Career Transition Advice from Teri Levy (Recruiting/Career Transition Expert)

Editorial Note:  It’s with great pleasure that I present this guest contribution from my dear friend and amazing Recruiter Teri Levy. She is a well-connected, knowledgeable recruiting specialist out of Nashville, TN. She’s helped me and countless others. And she’s one of my favorite people. Please read and enjoy and be sure to connect with Teri on LinkedIn and Twitter @tg0476.


Career in Transition . . .What it is NOT!
(Disclaimer – this is not designed to offend you but to help you with your career search).

Do you know how many resume’s I get a week?  Let’s start with what my day to day work is…
My company currently has 40,000 employees – you can imagine that that translates into a lot of openings at any given time. . .from the line level positions to management roles.  I spend my entire day looking at resumes for these openings, guiding local recruiting teams on which candidates seem most appropriate and working with managers on appropriate hiring strategies.  Let me tell you, I see ALOT of resumes.

Next, consider the candidates I work with through my volunteer activities.  I run a job networking group on Thursday evenings called the Mt Juliet Career Transitions Center.  We have learned in the past several years that sending your resume in to a posting on Indeed, Monster or CareerBuilder is NOT going to get you very far.  You followed the rules, the instructions, and have updated your resume to include relevant information.   So, why won’t posting your resume to job boards not get you very far?

We know that 80% of the job openings NEVER get posted – or if they do, they are already filled.  They are filled with people we (recruiters and hiring managers) already know.  So, let me say that again – 80% of the job openings you see on indeed – are already filled.  They were filled before we even posted.  They are only posted for legal requirements.

This means that when you apply to a job posting, your only apply for 20% of the opportunity. What do you do?  Let me tell you what most people do, they find recruiter and send them their resume and then call them 50 times a day.  Just joking – before you pick that phone up, read on for what you should do and how you should create a plan of attack.

• Network.  Find a networking transitions group that will hold you accountable week to week and find others who are in transition with you.  Take the time while you are in transition a.k.a. unemployed or just trying to grow your career to learn how to network, do a resume and your LinkedIn profile. Meet with others like yourself for coffee, talk about the positions and people who are moving around in the markets you are looking at.  At the same time, make sure that you document your search – your connections, networking meetings, applications, and resume submissions.  For an example of how to document your search, click here and choose Job Search Template.


• Volunteer.  Did you know that I have spent the past 10 years volunteering with multiple organizations?  Some in my field, some doing educational stuff for non-profits, and some paid opportunities to speak on the recruiting market today.  ALL OF THEM HAVE PROVIDED ME WITH THE NETWORKING OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOU, THE JOB SEEKER. Don’t get caught behind the curve, make sure the next time you get laid off, you have something else waiting….by volunteering and making those connections – TODAY.

• Don’t like social media? That’s fine…but you might not find a job as fast if you aren’t on social media (LinkedIn especially).  Are you an introvert?  Do NOT use that as an excuse, it is a reason to get out and network more, meet new folks, and not rely just on the recruiter you know or the posting you saw.  If you want to find a job, it takes work.  Creating and emailing the resume to me or any other connection is only half of the battle AND if you start and end there – you will not find a job.  Seriously, no joke – don’t stop there.

The people who have been most successful, quickly are the ones who join a networking group (like #MJCareerTransitions), learn something about getting their resume in order, learn how to market themselves, network with those IN the group and then go to other networking groups.  I hate to use an AA analogy but 90 meetings in 90 days….could mean a job for you in a lot less time.

Tired?  Yeah me too, but I have met with this group religiously, week after week after working 50-60 hours a week for 3 years.  I worked with this group through an acquisition that doubled my previous company, during a time when my husband was sick with heart trouble and had two surgeries and my child was missing for three weeks (ok perhaps I took off a day or two then)…but I was still there and available.  Where are you?

Transition Groups like mine usually meet weekly and the leaders of those groups in the same markets usually, strategically, put them on different days – just for you!  Want a find a job?  It is a full-time job, but you will be a whole lot more marketable and easier to find, if you are out networking and growing your network by assisting others with their career search.  For those that have already learned to network and are in a transitions group each week, they will be landing a new career while you are still sending application after application into Indeed, Monster, and CareerBuilder and the like.

Wishing you the best of luck – and hope to see you soon at a career transition meeting near you.