Advice in working with a recruiter


1. Be open and honest about your past (even if you were let go from a job) . CR’s need to know the whole story. It is often better to openly confront potential negatives than to have them surface at a later point which can raise the implication that a candidate was not being forthright.

2. Sell yourself to the recruiters. Don’t take the attitude that you are ” just here to see what you got” with recruiters. By motivating the recruiter to want to sell you, you may end up getting presented to jobs that initially your resume would not suggest you were suited for.

3. Co-operate with the recruiters. Show up on time for your appointment with the recruiter as well as with the recruiters’ clients. Whenever possible, re-confirm the time and place of your meeting with an employer. Forward info to the CR quickly. Return calls promptly. Promptly follow up after the interview.

4. Encourage recruiters to be honest in their feedback to you. Even if you did not get the job offer, try to learn something valuable from each hiring scenario. Tell the recruiter “you won’t hurt my feelings, be honest what the company said about me.”

5. Don’t expect the recruiters to work for you, but do try to motivate him/her to help you. Do NOT become annoyed at a CR if he/she has not presented you with job opportunities in abundance. Recruiters may strike out for the moment, so keep encouraging them. If concerned that a CR is not presenting you or pursuing a particular job on your behalf, ask what the concerns are and see if you can satisfy them.

6. Keep the interviews a CR sends you on confidential. Unlike retained searches, it is a drawback to both the CR and you to keep news of a job opening confidential. Once word about a particular job leaks out onto the marketplace, other recruiters and candidates may jump into the picture, creating more competition and potential delay for you.

7. If you have heard about a particular job, approach the CR working on it and not the company directly about your potential interest. If a company has a contingency recruiters extensively involved, the search fee is not an issue. If the CR is close to the company and he finds out about your candidacy on “his” assignment, the CR may try to discourage your hiring. Go first to the CR, saying “I heard about this and rather than go to the company, I wanted to talk to you.” You’ll have a friend not a foe.

8. Keep recruiters informed of your status without breaking other confidences. If you are close to an offer somewhere, but feel you still want to pursue other specific jobs, be up-front. That you may have a pending offer somewhere else can motivate a CR to tell a client to accelerate your candidacy. However. don’t push to get an offer you wouldn’t likely take. Employers do not take kindly to being pushed to rush to make offers only to see them rejected by the job-seeker.

9. Use recruiters as a sounding board for salary negotiations. If the CR has a close relationship with the company, the CR will actively negotiate the terms of an offer. In most cases, CR’s will know how far the company can go in its negotiations. Be upfront in communicating your current package as well as your needs. Listen to the recruiter’s advice about what is realistic to expect and what isn’t.

10. Once you’ve concluded your search, inform good CR’s of where you went. You never know with mergers going on when you’ll need their help again. It can never hurt to be in their database.

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