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Recruiters are an integral part of the 2015 job search.  And that's a good thing.  My recruiter friends are happy to dish on how to work with them and how you can put your best foot forward.  Each week I ask them a question that will help you enrich your recruiter relationships.

This week I asked:
What should job searchers keep in mind when devising their strategy for working with recruiters?

Here are the responses I received:

External Recruiters
  • External recruiters work for employers, not for job searchers.  It doesn't mean they don't care.  And, because their fee may be dependent on your getting the job, they have a stake in your success.  But, in the end, they are seeking the best match for the employer.

  • Although you may have your initial formal interview with a recruiter, any time you are talking with a recruiter, you should be in "interview" mode.  This is true for both internal and external recruiters.

  • If they identify you as a good candidate, they will keep you in mind, especially if they specialize in a very narrow area with limited candidates at each level.

  • They are very focused on the job openings they are trying to fill at any given time.  Keep communications brief and specific to an opening. 

  • They use social media a lot.  Make sure you have an online presence (especially LinkedIn but others as well) and that your profiles are comprehensive and up to date. 

  • The old "add me to your database" strategy doesn't work as well today because people change jobs more frequently now.  Recruiters are more likely to run a search on any given day to locate candidates than to refer back to a prior list.

  • Some recruiters will connect with you on LinkedIn especially if you are searching in their niche and if you provide info on your key skills and experience rather than the default invite. 

  • When you are working with an external recruiter, you can learn a lot about the prospective employer and what the employer is seeking. 

  • They may help you gather feedback from your interviewers on your performance and the reason you weren't selected.

  • Connect them with GOOD candidates for their openings whenever possible.

  • The best way to establish relationships with external recruiters is to contact them regarding a particular job opening of theirs, impress the heck out of a potential employer, and, even if you don't get the offer, stay in touch. 

Internal Recruiters

  • These recruiters, of course, work for a specific company or group of companies.  They are active in searching for candidates, coordinating hiring efforts with external recruiters, and in accepting applications from candidates

  • Regardless of how you make your initial contact with an internal recruiter, be sure that you request guidance and "follow the rules" on getting your application into their Human Resources system.

  • They may help you get feedback from your interviewers on your performance and the reason you weren't selected.

  • More often than you would think, they will keep you in mind if you impress them with your credentials, but don't make the final cut for an offer.  This is especially valuable when the company decides to add another posting for a position they recently filled or the initial candidate doesn't work out. 

  • Some recruiters will connect with you on LinkedIn if you are a credible candidate in their industry or role and if you give them a reason rather than using the default invite.
 
  • Follow their positions and refer GOOD candidates to them whenever possible. 

  • The best way to establish relationships with internal recruiters is to be referred by a company employee, impress the heck out of the company employees who interview you, and, even if you don't get the offer, stay in touch.


Recruiters:  What should candidates keep in mind about working with recruiters?
Job searchers:  What have you learned working with recruiters during your job search?

Please share this post with someone who is looking to find their ideal job!
 


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