This is part 2 in a short series I’m doing on finding an IA job. Read part one of finding an IA job: practice.
Networking is critical and especially important since many jobs in our field are filled not via traditional job postings, but rather through word-of-mouth. Who you know matters and is a big factor when looking for work.
There are a number of ways to network. Here’s some suggestions:
- Research and reach out to other IA’s in your local community. We’re not scary and often can be of help or will try to keep our eyes and ears open about possible opportunities — either within our own companies/teams or with others. Here is Calgary you’ll want to try Calgary UX or the soon-to-start Calgary UX Bookclub
- Come out to events and conferences. Calgary UX runs quarterly events, local conferences like UX Camp and nForm’s CanUX are all great places to meet others.
- Talk to those who are doing UX in the community. The other day I got a great letter of introduction from an IA moving to Calgary asking if I’d be willing to meet with him, view his work and talk about the community here in Calgary. We’re meeting this week and it’s a great example of putting yourself out there.
- Seek out folks on IXDA, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other gathering points. Many of us post using hashtags like #ux or #ia. Search for common phrases like information architecture, usability, interaction design, service design to find others who talk about IA topics. You might even stumble on some local folks.
- Browse the membership directories of UX groups/associations. The Information Architecture Institute and other groups have membership directories that are accessible to members. It’s a great way to uncover folks who live and work in your city.
Any other ideas?