Tips for Getting the Most from you Recruiter Relationships
Working with recruiters can be a positive, mutually beneficial partnership once you know the ground rules. First, it’s important to understand that recruiters have clients seeking specific candidates with specific skills, so their business is driven by that client's recruiting needs, not the availability of candidates. For this reason, candidates will only be introduced to organizations where there is a potential fit between the candidate and the client’s vacancy.
Second, understand that your recruiter works with many other candidates often on multiple assignments. It’s impossible for a recruiter to take everyone’s phone calls. Be patient and limit your follow-up to a single phone call and email message; your recruiter will appreciate it.
Recruiters routinely engage in searches for positions not publicly advertised on employer websites or job boards, so developing relationships with search professionals can expand the number of opportunities for which you may be considered. With this attitude, you will be helping the recruiter – not just trying to get them to help you.
The following are some helpful tips when working with a recruiter:
- Contact a recruiter only if you are serious about changing jobs, because if you turn down a recruiter’s interview offer, chances are he or she won’t work with you again.
- Some recruiters are generalists specializing in all functions, industries, and areas of the country, while others may specialize in niche industries or distinct geographic markets – take the time to learn about a recruiter’s focus before sending your resume off.
- Be prepared to provide full disclosure of your job search status, including any companies or agencies to which you have already submitted your resume, the companies with which you are actively engaged and the status of each of those engagements.
- What are the ideal title, responsibilities, location, type of company, and compensation for your next opportunity? Communicating these details to search professionals will save them time and improve your odds of being considered for a coveted position.
- Keep the recruiter well-informed of any changes in your availability to interview or anything that would prevent you from starting a new role, including vacations that may conflict with the client's schedule.
- If you aren’t right for the job, refer someone who might be a better fit – this can build a relationship that may benefit you later.
- Only send an updated resume when major changes take place in your career, such as receiving a promotion or a major industry award.
- Maintain regular contact with recruiters, touching base every 60 to 90 days. Your contact will begin to remember you and will not think of you as overly aggressive.
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