A hidden job means an open position that has not been made public. Instead, potential candidates are found for example via headhunters or networks. Sometimes the employer is not even actively looking for a professional to join his/her team but a new position is created when a capable person offers his or her expertise at a suitable time. As many as 70-80% of employment opportunities in Finland are not advertised publicly but remain “hidden”. (1)
According to Sitra’s survey 2016, less than a quarter (23%) of Finns found their current job by applying for a vacancy, while around 70% found work through other channels. (2) But where to find these hidden job markets? This blog will give you practical tips on where to start looking.
Why Finland has hidden job markets?
From the employer’s point of view, the recruiting process via open job markets often is lengthy and expensive. It requires a lot of resources: advertisement, going through the applications organizing the interviews, and communicating the process status for the applicants.
From the company’s point of view the new hire is also always a risk. It’s easier to hire personnel internally. If the right person for the job can be found inside the company, it minimizes the risk of making a bad hire.
Some companies prefer that their open positions and periods of hiring aren’t public knowledge. Perhaps the company is opening a new branch, for example, but does not want to share this information with the public and the competitors just yet. In these cases the company uses silent recruitment by looking for the suitable canditates through their networks, social media or with the help of a head-hunter.
Where to look for a hidden job?
Hints and tips for the jobseekers
1. Media and news
Follow the media. Decide which media you wish to monitor. What are the most important regional newspapers, what are the most notable publications in your profession, which websites you should follow online and which social media networks are worthwhile to participate in?
2. List of fastest-growing Companies in Finland
Look for growth companies. Growth companies often want and need to recruit new employees but they have very little time or money for the lengthy recruitment processes. Follow the news and check out startup companies (3).
3. Company expansions, reforms and news about designation
Relocating to new premises, establishing new functions, winning bids or outsourcing projects often result in a need for new employees. Appointment news is always a source of opportunities. If a company is replacing its management it often results in changes at other levels of the company as well. On the other hand, many people who start in a new job leave behind a vacancy that probably has not been made public yet.
4. Social media
Be present on social media. Many recruiters use channels such as LinkedIn when scouting for professionals. Be bold in your networking and be active in various groups. If a job seeking campaign on social media seems like a natural thing for you, give it a go. By sharing your home page or video-cv you gain visibility that may lead you to the right employer.
Networking (4) is not just for social people but in today’s world, everyone can find a suitable way to network. Networking takes on very diverse forms and it can be done even from your couch at home. Use the channels of networking that suit you: LinkedIn and other social media, exhibitions and conferences. Expand your network boldly and be active in different kinds of professional discussions, either in person or online. Remember to use your own professional networks and circle of acquaintances. Let your network know what you can do and what you are looking for.
6. Direct contact
You should directly and boldly contact employers that interest you and send them an open application (5) and CV. Choose the targets you approach carefully before making contact. Think about why you want to work for that particular company. Think of yourself with the company, find a contact person to approach and think about what additional value your expertise could give them. Always tailor your application and CV to match the company or position you are applying for.
7. Headhunters, recruiting and HR companies and their recruitment platforms
You should regularly update your information on the pages of different recruitment and headhunting companies and maintain active open applications in the electronic systems of the target companies.
8. Recruitment fairs and events
Events and fairs (6) are a good and easy way of meeting interesting employers.
9. Universities’ and UAS’s Career Services
Career services at different universities/UAS offer support for job seeking and career planning. The services can vary slightly depending on the university/UAS. Check the possible career services of your home uni/UAS.
10. Open-minded attitude
Don’t give up. A hidden job is always an open opportunity. Keep on trying with an open mind.
Feeling embarrassed to ask for a job. Why? Psychologist and career coach Päivi Montgomery highlights in her latest book “ Työnhaun psykologia” that your jobseach and contact message is an advantage for the company. (7) You are offering your professional expertise to the employer. Be proud of yourself and your expertise. And remember to show it to the employer!
1. TEK (2020) Hidden jobs – what are they.
2. Sitra (2016). Only one in four Finns finds employment by applying for a vacancy
3. Startups in Finland Open Data Storehouse https://tietopankki.businessfinland.fi/anonymous/extensions/Startups/Startups.html
4. Riia Hoppania, Metropolia (2022) The Art of Networking – where to start if you don´t know anyone in Finland? Blog post. https://blogit.metropolia.fi/variousvariables/2022/08/25/the-art-of-networking-where-to-s 23.tart-if-you-dont-know-anyone-in-finland/
5. TEK työkirja (2022) Tools for job-search. Top tips: Application letter.
6. Events by Helsinki Employment Services: https://tyollisyyspalvelut.hel.fi/en/current-matters/events
7. P. Montgomery (2022) Työnhaun psykologia. Helsinki. Readme.fi
Timo Luoma works as a Career Coach in Metropolia SIMHE services supporting highly educated immigrants with their employment and study paths in Finland. They are working in a collaboration project with the employment services of Helsinki, Espoo and Vantaa-Kerava to increase employment among international professionals in the Helsinki region. In addition to career coaching, Timo’s responsibilities include coaching of students in Metropolia’s ICT Career Boost programme.
Jaana Vaittinen works as a Career Coach in Metropolia SIMHE services supporting highly educated immigrants with their employment and study paths in Finland. They are working in a collaboration project with the employment services of Helsinki, Espoo and Vantaa-Kerava to increase employment among international professionals in the Helsinki region. Her responsibility is to guide business accounting professionals in Metropolia’s Career Boost programme.