There is nothing more beautiful than a long-lasting relationship between a recruiter and a candidate. Yet, most of these interactions are fleeting and brief instead of solidly built on trust and mutual respect.
There are a number of ways to build a long-lasting relationship that can assist you throughout your work career. Taking the right steps mean that when you do need assistance finding your next role, you will have a confidante that can support you.
Take a recruiters call
If you have been consistently applying to roles and reaching out to recruiters, you will inevitably receive a call at work from someone who wants to talk about your job search. Even if you are in the middle of a work day, make a concerted effort to answer those phone calls.
The first thing to do once you answer the call is to let recruiters know you are at work. They can ensure a quick discreet call, while providing you with job details or interview times. If you are not able to talk, get their name, number, and confirm when you will call back. This is also perfectly acceptable.
Don’t let yourself convey any sort of annoyance. Avoid saying an aggressive “I can’t talk now”, and definitely don’t hang up on a recruiter. You don’t know why they called and doing so may cause you to miss out on your dream job. It is not very gracious nor respectful, and it is not the impression you want to leave someone with.
Never lie to your recruiters. Be honest about what you did in previous roles and don’t embellish your level of skill. If you are unemployed, say so. There may be a number of contract to permanent roles that are open to you that you would not hear about if you weren’t immediately available. If you have recently taken a new role but don’t like it, say so. Recruiters are open to working with you, no matter what your situation is. If you lie, you close more doors than you open.
Know that the truth will always come out, whether through reference checks, discrepancies between your CV and LinkedIn profile, or what you reveal in later conversations.
By being dishonest you are ruining a relationship that could provide you with endless new opportunities through your working career.
Be ready for a change before reaching out
Think about why you really want to leave your job before you reach out to recruiters, or start a slew of confetti job applications. It could be something small that is easily resolvable and you will may choose to stay. Don’t waste anyone’s time – including your own.
If you are looking to get a job offer with the idea of using it to get a raise with your current company – don’t. This will not work in your favour and will create an incredibly bad impression with both your recruiter, your current company, and your prospective company. You never know who you may work with in the future!
Trust your recruiter
When recruiters give you advice – trust them. Don’t argue and antagonise your recruiters. They are doing everything they can to give you a competitive advantage for the roles you most desire. Remember; it’s in their best interest to get you in front of their client.
If a recruiter asks you to rework your CV for a specific role, it is because they know exactly what the client is looking for. They know more about the people who will be interviewing you, and thus can prepare you for what to expect. They also often have more information about the role than the advertised job description.
Don’t underestimate their insider information: recruiters have knowledge that you simply don’t have access to.
Keep in contact – don’t stalk
Recruiters will happily update you on the progress of a role, and will absolutely stay in contact if a position they presented you for doesn’t work out. Make sure to ask what the process looks like for the recruiters you work with from beginning to end, as all recruiters work differently. Then clarify how you should follow up, as well as how often. Working together in an informed way helps build a solid connection for career growth.
While it is fine for you to follow up, ‘stalking’ is a step too far. No one wants to be called twice a day for an update. It creates a sense of desperation instead of enthusiasm. It also tells recruiters you have no understanding nor appreciation for the other work they do during the day.
Thank them at the end of the process
Whether you were offered the position or not, make sure to thank your recruiters for their time. You would be surprised how few people recognise the work of a recruiter. A simple email, handwritten card, or even a phone call will make a great impression. Consider leaving them a LinkedIn recommendation if they did a stellar job. You can be sure your recruiter will tell everyone they work with about it – and they, in turn, may keep you in mind for future roles.
By taking that little bit of extra time to express your thanks, you will further cement your relationship, and create future goodwill.
Be open to staying in contact even after you land a job
You never know when you will need your recruiter’s help again. Stay in contact periodically even if you are happy in your role. A quick connect or a comment on one of their social media posts will suffice. This will help recruiters stay up to date on what you are doing in your role, and it will keep you ‘top of mind’.
Serve as a great resource
Another great way to cultivate a great recruiter relationship is by recommending top performing people to them. If you know a stellar candidate that is looking for a new position, recommend them to recruiters you have worked with, who you know can assist them in their field of interest. Recruiters love having amazing candidates come to them. It is even better when one of their prior candidates does the recommending.
And should you move into a position where you make or influence hiring decisions, remember to internally refer the recruitment agency or recruiters that helped you get there!
There are many different types of recruiters. The key is finding one that is best suited to your career needs. Build your relationships with recruiters that can help you long-term. For the best results, be proactive about finding a good recruiter, working together, and applying to jobs you love.
Our recruiters always love helping qualified candidates move their career forward. Upload your CV, and search our job listings for roles that are relevant to your experience. Connect with one of us today!