Does networking play a role in assisting with obtaining employment?

.0 Introduction

Employment is one of the few things that most people look forward to in their life. Just like in any facet of the world, potential new entrants of the labour market are curious to understand and develop an effective and efficient way to obtain paid work.

The need to find rewarding employment is expressed by numerous individuals across all walks of life. Primarily, students and recent graduates look to create a path that leads them to their dream jobs or career despite not having work experience in the field they hope to be employed in. This raises the question: “How can we be competitive in employment search when resumes are gap-ridden?” Over the years there has been a common recommendation that most recruiters and career planners often point to – networking. Networking is often viewed as the holy grail that provides opportunities to employment, especially in North America.

There are many questions surrounding networking: what are the options? Is it different from basic meetings and communication? The big question remains ‘How effective is networking in landing a job?’ . While conducting this research we seek to uncover and determine the relationship between networking and obtaining employment. In doing so, we will also evaluate the evolution of networking, preferred methods of networking to obtain employment, and ascertain the role and effectiveness of networking in assisting in obtaining employment.

1.1 Topic of Research 

The topic of the research is: does networking play a role in assisting with obtaining employment?

1.2 Research Question 

For this project, our main objective is to determine the relationship between networking and obtaining employment. This brings us to the big question that this research focuses on: Does networking play a role in assisting with obtaining employment?

This is a question that many students and employment seekers ask on a daily basis, especially students and recent graduates who are looking to enter the labour force in search of employment in their preferred career or in general.

1.3 Objectives 

This research has multiple objectives pertaining to answer real-life questions that are asked constantly about networking and employment. After the completion of this research project, we intend to explore the truths and myths regarding the relationships between networking and obtaining employment. Major aspects of networking and employment will be reviewed extensively to decipher the general beliefs of individuals through in depth quantitative and qualitative analysis. A conclusion will be drawn from the data and information generated through the course of the research. The following are the objectives of the research based on the research question:

1.3.1 To explore the evolution of traditional and contemporary types of networking

The early mentions of networking will be explored and the evolution of networking from what it used to be in the earlier industrial era to the contemporary consensus of what it is in the 21st century. The application of networking in 1900s will be considered, specific examples will be examined, and comparisons and contrasts will be drawn as applicable.

1.3.2 To determine the role of networking in finding employment among Seneca Students, and graduates/Alumni

We will be exploring the idea that employment has a role in assisting students in finding employment. Special attention will be paid to the individuals within the Seneca College community which includes staff, current students, and alumni. We will be considering these individuals as we believe they have been and/or will be affected by the research question.

1.3.3 To determine how job seekers use social networks professionally?

Employers use social networking sites for a number of reasons related to attracting high quality candidates for current and future openings. This highlights why it is important to keep our profile on social networking proficient. We will include tips and recommendations about how the students needs to advertise/market them self on the network professionally.

1.3.4 To state our recommendations on the effectiveness of networking in obtaining employment after compiling our findings 

After the extensive research process and compilation of primary data, we intend to provide a recommendation about the effectiveness of networking in obtaining employment. Importantly, secondary research, both qualitative and quantitative, will be reviewed and analyzed to compare and contrast our research findings with other scholarly publications and research.

1.4 Significance of the Study

This research study is significant as it affects everyone who intends to obtain employment at some time in their life. It provides an avenue for genuinely curious individuals to access information regarding the effectiveness to obtain employment. If networking is effective, it will point to what kind of networking is effective and what are the available networking options available in modern society.

1.5 Limitation of the study

The scope of the research we are conducting is quite broad. We will be covering networking and the evolution of networking available at this point in time. We will also look to explore the networking options available in this age. We will also consider employment and find links (if any) between networking and obtaining employment and use both qualitative and qualitative research methods to come to a conclusion. We will be considering the opinion of employed individuals and students general. However, we will pay special attention to people within the Seneca community.

1.6 Definition of terms

During the research, there are a few terms that we will use to use repeatedly and are defined below for the purpose of the research.

  • First-degree connection – Building and maintaining contact with an individual such as your friend or family through networking
  • Full-time employment – Employment in which a person works anything above 30 hours per week.
  • Part-time employment – Employment in which a person work a minimum number of hours set by their employer. For this research, it will be working 1-24 hours per week.
  • Second-degree connection – Building and maintaining contact with an individual through a first-degree connection (ie. friend of a friend)
  • Third-degree connection – Building and maintaining contact with an individual(s) through a second-degree connection (ie. friend of a friend of a friend)

2. Literature Review 

For the purpose of this research only sources that are peer reviewed will be used for analysis and recommendations. However, other credible sources may be used to buttress position and points.

A preliminary review of the research that has been conducted so far by various individuals,agencies and other stakeholders have shown that there is a relationship between networking and obtaining employment. The evolution of networking from the early industrial era to the modern age is often discussed as well as the efficacy of networking in employment search.

Networking can be done in various ways in both formal and informal settings. In a document published by Ryerson University’s Career Development & Employment Centre, there are various ways to network. The three main ways to network are: first degree connections, second degree connections and third degree connections. (explained in the definition section above). Highlighted in the publication is a notion that many businesses, including Fortune 500 companies and even eighty-five of the Fortune 100 companies have been known to use LinkedIn (a professional networking platform) as a hiring resource.

A journal authored by Brian V. Krauth, “A dynamic model of job networking and social influences on employment, the history and efficacy of networking” is exploited and discussed with due consideration of both quantitative and qualitative analysis. Krauth in his work notes that empirical research conducted back in the 1930s indicates that social networks play an important role in job search. (1) He also mentioned that Bewley (1999) OLD SOURCE, to be removed? lists 24 studies between 1932 and 1990 that estimate the fraction of jobs obtained through friends or relatives, with most estimates between 30 and 60 percent. By any statistical measure, the estimates of 30% and 60% is quite significant to attribute to the relationship between networking and employment

Indistinguishably, the book, “Ultimate Job Search Intelligent Strategies to Get the Right Job Fast”, Betty outlines the many tools and strategies available to jobseekers to obtain employment. The one tool that stood out amongst the alternative of using Search Firms and Employment Agencies and Getting the most from Newspaper/Journal advertising is  “The Incredible Power of Networking”. Through her book, Betty expresses networking is an integral and essential part of job searches.

Similar to the views noted in the book referenced above, Daniel J. Ryan’s book, “Job search handbook for people with disabilities”, references the effectiveness of networking in obtaining employment and career development.

Dru Reynolds’s journal, “Effective Networking – Finding Hidden Employment Opportunities” points out the many opportunities and benefits of networking. He highlights effective networking creates an advantage in using our daily interactions as a stepping stone to succeed in finding hidden employment opportunities (Reynolds 2). Reynolds also mentions various networking platforms such as your personal network – people who are already part of the tapestry of your life: family, friends, clubs, alumni groups, professional contacts; and social networking like LinkedIn, which is now the norm in today’s professional world. He explains how these platforms and other networking tools can significantly increase the odds of a person getting employed in comparison to those who are not actively engaged in networking.

The sources mentioned above have a parallel view about the efficacy of networking in the job search process. All sources that we have compiled to date agree that networking is an integral and necessary tool to be used in order to obtain employment. This is because individuals have built a mutually beneficial relationship with other parties that contribute to each other’s interests.

During networking activities, people share their knowledge, ideas and skill set which puts one ahead of the pack in a race for employment as information shared could be relevant about a particular company, industry or job opportunity.

Over the course of the research, we seek to analyze, confirm or reject the hypothesis proposed by the individuals mentioned above in their journals, books and articles. We will synthesize data and evaluate the importance of networking in the search for employment

The following are references to some literature review from credible sources to support our research and to assist us in answering the research question:


  • Job search handbook for people with disabilities

Author: Daniel J. Ryan 1960- c2011

  • The Ultimate Job Search Intelligent Strategies to Get the Right Job Fast

Author: Beatty. 2006

  • Hired! : networking to land the job you want

Author: Joel. Abraham 2011 Incorporate into the literature review and not list them

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Also posted onApril 9, 2020 @ 3:29 pm