How To Make Recruiters Work For You

2012-06-19 07:00:00

One thing many job seekers tend to forget is recruiters aren’t exactly out to help you find a job. They’re working for a company that wants to find top talent, so chances are, they couldn’t care less about your personal job search.

Yet recruiters are certainly helpful contacts to have, especially in this competitive job market. Each year, recruiters help millions of Americans find jobs, but it can often be difficult to work with them in a way that allows you to get the most out of your relationship without being overbearing or annoying. Check out these tips for making recruiters work for you:

1.  Connect online. Thanks to social media, it’s become incredibly easy to connect with recruiters. Follow them on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn, then look for opportunities to start a conversation—much like you would do with any other professional contact. Connecting with anyone professionally requires establishing a mutually beneficial relationship, so look for these opportunities. If a recruiter tweets about a job opening you don’t quite fit, take the time to refer them to someone who does. If you take an active role in communicating with them, chances are you’ll be at the forefront of their minds when a fitting position opens up.

2. Don’t waste their time. Remember, recruiters are busy people, and they talk to plenty of job seekers who are just like you every day. Respect their time by developing a short elevator pitch that lets them know who you are, what you can offer, and what you’re seeking. Don’t send over resumes and writing samples if they haven’t been asked for, and don’t bombard them with emails or phone calls—the key is to find a balance that keeps you on their radar without coming across as overbearing.

3. Ask the appropriate questions. If a recruiter asks you to send over a resume, ask them a few questions about their intentions. Ask if they have a specific job in mind for you, where they plan to send the resume, and when you can expect to hear from them again. Too many job seekers send resumes and receive nothing but silence in return, so it’s important to show you’re a serious candidate.

4. Attempt to meet with the recruiter in person. Not many job applicants do this, so setting up an in-person meeting will automatically help you to stand out from the crowd. A face-to-face conversation can help you to better articulate your strengths and what you’re seeking. Consider bringing a list of companies you’d like to work for, and glean advice from them about getting your foot in the door there.

5. If you don’t hear back, don’t sweat it. If you don’t hear back about a position after sending your resume, it can be easy to place the blame on the recruiter. But the fact is you may simply not fit the bill. To increase your chance of snagging a call back, be sure to read the description of the position carefully, and tailor your resume to include some of its key words.

Building a relationship with a recruiter can help you to land your next job, so remember to treat them like you would any other networking contact. Creating a balanced relationship is the key to establishing any professional connection. Good luck!

Have you been successful in building relationships with recruiters? How so? Share your tips below.

Categories: Career Advice