This week, LiveCareer reached out to our network of recruiters and asked them to provide advice to job seekers regarding the resume process. When candidates contact—or are contacted by—a recruiter, how should they make an effort to reach out, and how should they stay in touch? What can they do to follow-up appropriately and demonstrate interest in a job without going too far? Here are some of the answers we received.
Recruiter Tip #1:
“Job seekers should remember one important detail about recruiters: recruiters work for their employer clients. They don’t work for job seekers. This means that no reputable recruiter will ask a job seeker for money. But it also means that your recruiter is not at your beck and call. It’s her goal to please the employers who have a position to staff, not the candidate who wants that position. So don’t make demands on her time, and don’t try to set the terms of your interaction. She can be a powerful ally, but you’ll need to stay on her good side.”
Recruiter Tip #2:
“Call once a week to follow-up. If a recruiter contacts you with an available position, express interest. Then send her a resume if she asks for one. Pick up the phone immediately if she calls you for more detail. Then follow up—but only once a week. If the job is right for you, she’ll let you know.”
Recruiter Tip #3:
“Your recruiter wants you to shine as badly as you do. So take her advice. If she tells you that you’ll need to make some adjustments to your persona or your pitch in order to impress a specific client, think about how badly you want the job. If your interest level is high, do as she suggests.”
Recruiter Tip #4:
“You may be dealing with a third party, not the actual employer for the job, but that’s no reason to let your guard down. For example, don’t focus entirely on money. If you only seem interested in how much these employers can offer, and you don’t emphasize what you have to contribute, you won’t impress the recruiter, the employer, or anyone else.”
Recruiter Tip #5:
“Use keywords in your resume. By that I mean, read the post carefully and use the same phrasing that the employers use in their list of required qualifications. Recruiters may type these phrases into a keyword search in order to pull resumes out of a vast database, and if you use these words and phrases, you’ll increase your odds of appearing in the results.”
Recruiter Tip #6:
“Get recruiter attention by including three words in both your resume and your online profile (on sites like LinkedIn): your preferred job title, your industry, and your geographic area. Sometimes recruiters don’t actually read profiles carefully—they just send a specific opportunity to every single resume that contains these three words.”
Your Resume Can Open Doors….
…But only if it’s seen by the right people. Stay on good terms with your recruiters and show them the same respect you hope to receive in return. Meanwhile, don’t submit your resume to anyone—recruiter, employer, or professional contact—until it’s polished and complete. Visit LiveCareer for tips and formatting resources that can get you to this stage.