Is there a proper way of reaching out to a recruiter?
We asked experts to give us their advice on how to do it correctly.
Sales and Recruiting Manager for JMJ Phillip Executive Search
Reach out to the recruiter with a brief message.
Do research on recruiters and agencies that conduct searches that matches your background. For example, if you work in the Manufacturing industry, then search for manufacturing centric search firms and recruiters. Reach out to the recruiter through LinkedIn with a customized brief message on why you’re connecting with them.
Show that you’ve properly conducted research and be professional. For example:
I see you’re focused on searches within the “fill in the blank” industry and I’d love to network with you as I’m looking to make a job transition myself.
Thank you for your time.
Send a follow-up message requesting an introduction.
Once the connection is accepted, send a follow-up message requesting an introduction. You can send a resume at this point and request a brief phone call.
Understand that the open opportunities recruiters currently have are driven by their existing client base. In other words, a recruiter won’t be able to magic up your dream job, but’s it’s absolutely worth networking with several of them within your industry on the case that one opens up in the future that is suitable with your background.
Ask for advice with an open mind.
Receiving constructive criticism is a hard pill to swallow but resume advice, interview tips, and general job search guidance can go a long way. You WILL hear conflicting opinions on all of the job search advice.
To manage these conflicting opinions, adhere the wise words of the late and great Bruce Lee, “Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.”
Career Counselor at Resume Genius
When you speak or write to a recruiter, clarity is essential. That’s because recruiters have to juggle thousands of job openings as well as tens of thousands of job seekers.
Make it clear what you want right off the bat — avoid vague questions like “Hello, I’m interested in XYZ job. Would you happen to know anything about it?” It’s their job to know, so of course, they would! Instead, hone your question: “Hello, I’m interested in XYZ job. Would you be able to introduce me to the company’s hiring manager?”
Keep your emails or messages short and sweet so that they’re manageable for the recruiter; if they’re too long, the recruiter might be tempted to come back to them “another day,” which of course means never.
Aim to write a message that’ll take the recruiter no longer than 90 seconds to read. Anything more, and they’re likely to sit on it.
Courtesy means considering the tone you’re using when you email a recruiter. Remember that recruiters aren’t obliged to help you. If you come off as rude in your email, they’re not going to recommend you to any employers, since their reputation would plummet if the employer also didn’t appreciate your tone.
A message like “I’d be grateful if you could review my application and pass it on to any potentially interested hiring managers” is much more likely to succeed than “Please review my application and pass it on to all possible hiring managers.”
Founder and CEO of Techees and The Millionaire Recruiter
Add the recruiter on Linkedin.
Recruiters have a love-hate relationship with being reached out to. We’re the ones used to reaching out. You would think that when we have someone reach out to us, that we’d like it.
Recruiting and job hunting is so closely related to dating. People want what we can’t have. So then when it’s just out there, we think there must be something wrong.
The best way to reach out to a recruiter would be to add us on Linkedin. Naturally, we will look at your profile and accept your request. We will then be baffled as to why you added us, and then wonder more as to why you didn’t send a message. Mission completed in my mind. If you have what I’m looking for, I will absolutely reach out and the ball is back in your court.
Director, Executive Search Practice at Peak Sales Recruiting
There are a few things I always appreciate when someone decides to reach out to me.
Do your research.
First, my agency specializes in recruiting for a niche market, and as a result, only submit eligible candidates in that niche. If someone is reaching out to me, I am hoping they’ve taken the time to do their homework and ensure that their experience matches the type of roles I work to fill. If you don’t have the experience, there’s not much I can do to help find you a new career.
Tell me what makes you the best candidate for the role.
Once you’ve established that your skills and the type of roles I fill are compatible, it’s best to have a well-defined picture of what you want out of the next stage in your career.
Beyond the basics like salary and benefits, I want to know what aspects of your current job you enjoy, which ones you excel at, which ones could use improvement, and what tasks you’d like to emphasize to a potential employer.
Really tell me what you want to see in an authentic way better enables me to find the right match for you from my pool of available positions. And tell me what makes you the best candidate for the role while you’re at it.
Highlight your track record and showcase your value.
Lastly, you may be skilled or even an expert, but if you don’t have the proof to back it up, I can’t market your skills.
Have references, examples of previous work, a record of your performance – anything that can be used to highlight your track record and showcase your value to a hiring manager.
When reaching out, I’m most receptive to LinkedIn, as that’s a platform I use to build my network, and it allows me to see your work history at a glance. As for the way you broach the subject, be respectful of my time, present the facts up-front, and be direct about your expectations, highlighting any specific openings you think might be a good fit for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a recruiter?
A recruiter is a professional who helps companies find and hire talented individuals to fill their open positions. Recruiters play a critical role in the hiring process by identifying, screening, and presenting candidates to their clients, usually hiring managers or corporate human resources departments.
Recruiters may work for various organizations, including staffing agencies, executive search firms, and corporate in-house recruiting teams.
Their responsibilities can include the following:
• Identifying potential candidates through various channels such as job boards, social media, and referrals.
• Screening applicants to ensure they meet the qualifications and requirements for the position.
• Conducting interviews with candidates to assess their skills, experience, and cultural fit.
• Recommend qualified candidates to the client for selection.
• Manage the hiring process, including scheduling interviews and coordinating job postings.
What qualifications do recruiters typically have?
Recruiters come from a wide variety of backgrounds, but most have some combination of the following qualifications:
Bachelor’s degree: although not always required, many employers prefer candidates with a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as business, human resources, or psychology.
Recruiting experience: recruiters often start in entry-level positions and work their way up to more senior positions. Previous experiences in recruiting or a related field, such as sales or customer service, can be helpful.
Strong communication skills: recruiters must communicate verbally and in writing with candidates and clients.
Attention to detail: recruiters must be detail-oriented to ensure they can present qualified candidates to their clients.
Time management skills: recruiters often work in multiple places at once and must be able to prioritize their tasks effectively.
How can companies benefit from working with recruiters?
Companies can benefit from working with recruiters in several ways, such as:
Time savings: recruiters can save companies time by handling the candidate sourcing, screening, and interviewing process.
Access to a larger candidate pool: recruiters have access to a larger candidate pool than most companies, giving them a better chance of finding top talent.
Recruitment expertise: recruiters are experts in the field of recruitment. They can provide companies with valuable advice and guidance on hiring strategies, market trends, and salary negotiations.
Quality of hire: Recruiters can help companies improve the quality of their hires by presenting them to qualified candidates who are a good fit for the job and the company culture.
Confidentiality: recruiters can provide companies with confidentiality when conducting a confidential job search.
How can recruiters ensure diversity and inclusion in the hiring process?
Recruiters can ensure diversity and inclusion in the hiring process by:
Developing a diverse candidate pool: Recruiters can proactively seek candidates from diverse backgrounds and underrepresented groups to ensure a diverse candidate pool.
Removing bias from the screening process: Recruiters can conduct blind resume screenings or structured interviews to remove bias from the screening process.
Educating clients: Recruiters can educate clients about the importance of diversity and inclusion in the hiring process and encourage them to adopt inclusive hiring practices.
Providing training: Recruiters can provide training to their clients on diversity and inclusion in the workplace and how to identify and eliminate bias in the hiring process.
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