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The Recruiter Scoop: Getting Your Foot in the Door at a Large Company

February 21, 2019 | Express Scripts

Sydney G. is a market advisor on the Executive Talent Acquisition Team focused on identifying talented individuals in certain hiring markets and matching them with the career opportunities we offer. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, traveling and volunteering with shelter animals. (She’s pictured here representing Express Scripts at a professional career fair).

Given my position at Express Scripts, there’s always one question I’m frequently asked: how do I get my foot in the door at such a large company? Amid the days of taking a creative approach to sending in your resume – we’ve heard the stories of candidates disguising themselves as a Postmates delivery person or creating their resume on a chocolate bar – most people are surprised to learn that your resume isn’t your only important asset. Instead, I believe the key to getting your foot in the door comes down to one thing – networking.

While I’ve been lucky to spend my entire career in corporate talent acquisition doing what I love, I didn’t always know I was going to follow that career path. In fact, I was previously pursuing a career in nursing. With intentional networking, I discovered my passion for human resources and built my career around it.

Put Yourself Out There

When it comes to networking, you should always be intentional about building relationships and connections with other professionals who can support you in your career goals. Not only does networking expand your professional circle, it also broadens your thinking about potential opportunities and helps you practice your elevator pitch.

So, where do you start? Personally, I find it helpful to consider where you’re currently well connected and where you have the opportunity to build relationships. A few great ways to network are:

      • Staying connected with alumni and professors from your alma mater
      • Checking out other universities in your area for networking events that align with your interests
      • Asking your current connections what groups they’re a part of and how you might benefit from joining
      • Volunteering within your community – seek out opportunities to join a development board
      • Researching your local and nationwide chapters relevant to your industry you can join

Landing your dream job takes time, so remain open-minded and treat every interaction you have as a networking opportunity.

In a World of Technology – Use LinkedIn to Your Benefit

Given today’s social media capabilities, one of the simplest – and most popular – ways to virtually meet and connect with professionals in your field is through LinkedIn. With more than 500 million members throughout the nation, something as simple as sending a connection request to another professional gets you one step closer to finding your next opportunity.

When I get a connection request on LinkedIn, I will review the individual’s profile to see if their background aligns to opportunities at Express Scripts. However, just sending a connection request is not enough. Be proactive! In order to effectively network, you must be open to being the first one to start a conversation.

Start a Conversation

First impressions matter – even if it’s not in person. When starting a networking conversation, I recommend introducing yourself and clarifying the purpose of your outreach. Whether you’re simply expanding your network or looking to start a conversation, always be upfront with your ask.

When another professional sends me an email or direct message on LinkedIn, I am always impressed when they’ve done their research. Before reaching out, visit the respective organization’s career website to determine the business areas or positions you’d like to explore further. While you don’t have to tie yourself to a specific open role, you should at least have an idea of the functional areas you’d like to consider. This indicates to the connection that you’ve done your homework and you’re prepared to discuss how your background aligns.

The Work Doesn’t Stop With Networking

Once all of your networking has paid off and you’ve landed a job interview, make sure you put in the preparation to be successful. Here are my tips to successfully prepare for an interview with any company – large or small.

Do your research! Go beyond researching the company and familiarize yourself with the job’s responsibilities and requirements. What is it about the organization or role that inspired you to apply? By connecting your passion to the company’s mission, you’ll be able to share why you would be an asset to the organization.

Next, prepare responses for potential interview questions by thinking about your successes, major projects or stretch opportunities, areas of development, and lessons learned throughout your career. For those of you interviewing for your first professional opportunity, recall experiences from your education or past jobs. By preparing these examples ahead of time, you’ll be able to demonstrate in your interview how you’ve met requirements of the role.

Don’t forget to ask questions. Toward the end of the interview, the team will likely provide you the opportunity to ask questions regarding the company or the position. I can’t stress enough the importance of asking questions that can’t just be found on the company website. Take this time to really dive into understanding not just the position itself, but also the team the position reports to, how the position fits into the department as a whole, etc.

Last, but certainly not least, remember to be yourself. We all get nervous before job interviews. It’s easy to go into the interview trying to be the person you think the recruiting team wants. However, what you’re really doing is taking the focus away from what’s important: the conversation. Remember, interviews are a two-way discussion. The interviewer wants to get to know you just as much as you should want to get to know the company. While you may really want the role, you also want the right fit. By being yourself, you’ll actually get to know your prospective employer and determine if you can see yourself building a career there.

Interested in getting your foot in the door at Express Scripts? Visit our career site to begin familiarizing yourself with our open roles.

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10 thoughts on “The Recruiter Scoop: Getting Your Foot in the Door at a Large Company

  1. Zakkery Hamilton

    Sydney, I’m on the CuraScript SD side as a sales rep with multiple sagments under my belt how would i improve my chances on becoming a member with ESI? I’ve had several interviews for positions on the ESI side and I keep coming up short.

    Reply
  2. Gary Nadel

    Hi. I’ve worked at express scripts from 3/2014-10/15 as a contractor as a Release Manager. I recently was a candidate for a role in Franklin Lakes as a Release Process Engineer. I was extremely close but unfortunately I wasn’t selected. I’ve been trying to get my foot back in the door ever since my contract ended. I am constantly looking for new and challenging opportunities on your website. I hope to keep persuing find the right position quick. Thank you for your time.

    Reply
  3. Tina

    Thank you so much. This information was so helpful.

    I sometimes feel like I have passed the deadline ” of age restrictions” to having a career.
    After obtaining my degree and many failed interview attempts of pursuing what “I thought I wanted to do” career wise.
    I know just having the degree with no longterm hands on experience played at part in it, but I feel without out a doubt the unprepared interview questions asked, held the key to the final decision.

    I feel like I can take this helpful information and run with it, if you will, to prepare myself at my next attempt to finally land my career in accounting.

    Thank you,

    Reply
  4. Phyllis Dickey

    I am passionate about people and their healthcare.

    I have worked as liaison for medical clients with healthcare professionals particularly as a patient registration clerk.

    I would be grateful for a remote Customer Service Representative, as I do live in the state of North Carolina

    Reply
  5. Alex Rotsenmar

    Hi Sydney G, I’ve worked at Express Scripts from 2013-115 as a contractor, Deployment engineer @ Release Management group @ Franklin Lakes, NJ and lost my job due to offshoring. I’ve been trying to get my foot back in the door ever since my contract ended keeping in touch with my former managers and co-workers. I hope to get a position at ESI one day soon but so far no one contacted me for any of the opportunities despite me applying several times.

    Reply
  6. Cynthia Hill

    I worked at Express Scripts through a temporary service for six months and I really enjoyed working there. I’d love to have the opportunity to work there again, full or part time.

    Reply
  7. Mona Ibrahim

    I’m a registered pharmacist who is licensed in both Illinois and Wisconsin would like to get a job at Express Scripts!

    Reply
  8. Charlotte Crane

    I haven’t worked for quite some time. I chose to be a stay at home mother until my daughter graduated. Trying to get your foot in the door is impossible with any company. I’m proud I chose to be a homemaker and I can say my daughter is a graduate from IU.

    Reply

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