If you can't get the information you need directly through the switchboard, try the following additional methods:
- When dialing the company, ask to be put through to the department, then ask the first person who answers. Department workers usually do not screen as heavily and may be more willing to provide the information.
- Ask for the Human Resources Department. But watch out! They are usually quite good at screening and may try to intercept you if they sense you are seeking employment. If so, give a polite "thank you" and try another method.
- If you hit an automated-front-end-no-human-voice-hit-a-button system, usually you will have an option such as "0" to get to the operator. If not, feel free to wander through the system until you are able to reach a human voice, possibly someone in Customer Service. "Oh, I'm sorry, I was trying to get through to the switchboard and got lost in your telephone system. Can you please tell me the name of the manager of the _____ department?" You get the idea. Keep trying until you find a responsive human. There is bound to be at least one in every company.
If you have gotten this far and still don't have the basic information you are seeking, you are likely up against a screener who is attempting to keep you out. But never fear! We still have at least ten more ways to get through.