You’ve probably heard it a hundred times by now – the most important part of landing a job is building your network. While true, even a great network will probably not land you a job where there are none to be had. Another important, and often overlooked, part of your search is to look for what military intelligence professionals call indicators. Indicators are those critical pieces of information that are necessary to confirm or deny a particular action or event. In the service, indicators helped confirm what an enemy was up to. As you search for a new job, you need to find out what prospective employers are up to and in the process look for indicators that will tell you if the company is planning to begin hiring. The announcement of a new contract, the growth of an existing business, the expansion into a new sector or the development of a new product line are a few indicators to look for when you begin your research. They, and many others, signal that the organization is or may soon be hiring. Keep in mind that indicators also identify the negative as well. The loss of a major contract, report of layoffs, or poor quarterly performance are some signs that you might want to focus your efforts elsewhere for the immediate future. By looking at announcements from the company or articles in the media, you may discover opportunities before they hit the street or avoid wasted effort. Identifying indicators early will enable you to then selectively leverage your network to position yourself ahead of unannounced opportunities. So keep an eye out for indicators as you research that next opportunity.