The Sobering Stats You Need to Know When Seeking Your Next Job

People who enter the applicant pool in this way are significantly more likely to receive an offer.

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By Rose Leadem


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Job searching is no fun. Networking, writing cover letters, emailing your resume -- it's a tedious and time-consuming process. Worse yet, you only have a one-in-100 chance of getting hired, according to a new study. Though data also show that your chances improve if you get your foot in the door through a method other than cold applying.

Today, recruiting software company Lever has revealed surprising information about the hiring and recruiting process. Comprising data from more than four million candidates between July 2015 and August 2016, the report uncovers key findings on candidate-to-hire ratio, average interview and hiring times and the importance of referrals and proactive sourcing, a type of recruiting.

Related: 5 Ways to Find Your Dream Job

Don't be discouraged by the "one-in-100" stat. According to Lever's breakdown, your best bet is to be referred to a new company. Referred candidates have a one-in-16 chance of getting hired. Using a third-party agency can also better your odds -- those submitted by an agency have a one-in-22 chance of being placed. Whatever you do though, forget about applying through a company's careers site: only one in 152 candidates gets hired this way.

During your job search, it's also helpful to consider the size of the company to which you're applying. Smaller companies have greater hiring efficiency, compared to companies with more than 1,000 employees. On average, large companies typically evaluate 129 candidates before making a hire, and a larger candidate pool takes more time to vet. The median time from when a successful candidate enters a company's hiring process to when they are actually hired is 34 days, compared to 41 days for big companies.

Related: 7 Things Both Job Seekers and Job Providers Should Know for a More Effective Hiring Process

Once you land your first interview, you can expect to have about three more. The average candidate goes through four interviews and spends three hours and 44 minutes interviewing, although this duration may vary depending on the type of position. For example, product managers spend nearly five and a half hours interviewing, whereas a sales manager might spend only three.

So forget about job sites and career portals, and start networking. Among the study's findings is the power of being recruited by a potential employer, and that requires getting your name -- and your face -- out there.

Rose Leadem
Rose Leadem is a freelance writer for 

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