When I left Wallstreet Systems (WSS) at the end of 2006, I didn’t think that I would be back working with them again. But yet, here I am, sitting in their new office, surrounded by my old collegues (most of them are still here). It’s been a strange feeling, as if I had never left. Indeed some of my collegues has been saying that they considered me having had a (very) long holiday everytime my name up (for one or other reasons). This has led me into somekind of realisation, of how important it is for us to keep a good relationship with our former collegues for the reason of exactly moments like these, ‘especially’ for moments like these.
Why? Because ‘internal recommendation’ is the best and the fastest way to find a new job!
Most employers would give priority to internal recommendation above all other type of candidacies. They will generally trust their own employees to provide an inside information, a personal reference if you like about the candidate. This usually works best when both of the referee and the candidate were at some point working together, and even better if both were/are friends, which means that the employee can give not only a profesional recommendation, but also a character reference. Consequently, the employer would get a more accurate picture of the new candidate, and doesn’t have to rely solely on the result of interviews, which let’s be honest could often be a hit and miss. Moreover, for big companies which often do the hiring via Recruitement Agencies, this means that they don’t have to pay big commission to get new candidates, the internal recommendation process will skip the agent completely, less expenses for the company. Everybody is happy! (apart from the agent of course).
As a matter of fact, this was what exactly happened to me. I left WSS on November 2006 for one and other reasons, mainly to broaden my profesional horizon, to try other things that live could give me. One key thing in this was that my leaving was not one of those bad lay-offs, when employee is faced with statutory dismissal in regard of some employee’s own gross conduct or similar to this. I left the company peacefully with mutual understanding on the reason of why I was resigning.
More importantly though, after I left, I wasn’t just leave it like that. Thanks to the closeness that we had among us, I wasn’t prepared to throw away the relationship that we had. So, I kept in touch with them, especially with some select few, with whom I was particulary close. Of course, I didn’t know at that time, that this relationship that I kept going would give me a way out in the most critical moment of my profesional life, nor did I expect anything from this friendship. We were just friends, and that what friends do.
During the last month when I got redundant from my previous job, I had an opportunity to visit one of these friends of mine, who accidentally lives not far from me. He is now holding a quite high position in the company (the kind of position which has big influence in the decision of hiring new employee). We were talking about our jobs and other usual things. Basically to catch up with each other. Obviously I told him about my redundancy, and the fact that I was looking for a new position. But nothing actually happened on this meeting, possibly because the decision to hire new people was not finalised at that time. In anyway, I was not actually expecting anything from him, as all big companies were either cutting back their workforce or freezing the hiring process.
Only after a few weeks later that I received an email from him, basically asking me if I was still looking for new position, the fact that the company were looking for (several!) new developers to come aboard, and if I was interested I should call him. Well, at that point, that email felt like a letter from heaven. Because to be honest, I was starting to get very worried if I would ever get a job or not. I called him straight away, we talked and we arranged a face to face meeting where I would come to the company’s HQ and doing interview with HR. One short interview and one week later, I got an offer for the job I was applying, which I prompty accepted. And here I am, again, sitting among my old friends (who were all delighted to see me again), staring at programming codes which I wrote myself a few years earlier, and trying to remember why I did it that way 😀
So, next time you are planning to leave your company, consider to keep the friendship that you’ve already had, even after you leave, cause you never know what is going to hit you along your way (bad economic recession for example?). And when ‘the shit’s starting to hit the fan‘, you will really need all leverages you can get to get out from the deep-end. Having keep a good friendship with your old collegues could just be your ‘trump’ card, your lifeline, or sometimes the only way out.
Btwy, here are some photos from my new workplace
I was a Serial Jobseeker and thanks to God that I have finally found a job.
For others out there who are still not having any luck, don’t give up guys! I’m sure there is something out there for you.