Networking is a valuable tool for many trying to find a job, but once you've found a position, you can't exactly leave your connections until you need them again. In fact, it's highly recommended that your networking process doesn't end at simply beginning a new job. Instead, networking should continue no matter what, not only helping you keep new opportunities in mind but giving you a wider breadth of knowledge to work with.
According to US News and World Report, such connections can help you remain a powerful and wise member of your industry in question. Joining a professional association, for instance, will both play off your new job title and give you new connections that you can not only work with to improve practices but discuss everything from the direction of different companies to potential new job openings. As an added bonus, many companies will be interested in helping you join these associations, as your membership can reflect positively upon their public relations and potential resources, to name only a few perks.
Contract employment agencies can be another valuable tool at your disposal, even when you're not directly looking for a job. Much like with a professional network, having a relationship with a recruiter can allow you to know the state of the industry and any potential positions that you may be more interested in than your current one. Even if you don't have any use for a recruiter, building a relationship with one will be helpful anyway, especially considering that you may be able to help them by recommending potential hires for certain positions they find.
Gives you time to build a reputation
One aspect of networking that can be simple and still directly related to your current job comes from social media. Even when representing yourself as a member of your current company, any updates to a Twitter or LinkedIn page - especially considering any industry-related perks you may be aware of - can help draw other experts and hopefuls in the industry to connect with you. Having a wider net of people you can talk to is directly beneficial to your future employment opportunities, giving you a greatly improved chance of discovering different information.
Taking classes, workshops or certifications that are directly related to your industry can also play a positive role in your efforts. Not only will you be investing in your professional skills and adding to your future qualifications, but you can meet people who have similar goals while you're learning, as well. Whether you've sniffed out new opportunities that require additional skills or you simply want to improve your credentials in the event of future job searching, the benefits of a new classification can more than help your efforts in the future.
Be seen as a helper
According to Business News Daily, many of those in any given network will have work-related problems that they'll be looking to solve. In situations like this, being able to offer advice and counseling is one of the best features anyone can have. When attending networking events, asking questions after introductions can give you clear ways in which you can provide information and assistance to your fellow connections. Being able to help with problems or questions regarding the industry as a whole will lead others to consider you a strong leader who can provide a variety of benefits. As a result, in the event of a new position being announced or a sudden job opening, you may find that others consider your name first in the process. Being able to fully provide a concrete, helpful service to others will be largely beneficial in the long run.