Working with a Recruiter
Recruiters spend a good portion of their day networking, talking with candidates, clients and hiring managers. Your goal is to be one of those candidates that the recruiter thinks of when the opportunities present themselves.
Establish a relationship with two or three recruiters that you trust and are comfortable with. Share with them what you want your next position to be and what positions you are qualified for.
Keep an open mind, evaluate all opportunities presented. Be willing to interview if the recruiter believes that you are a possible fit for the position.
Give feedback. If a recruiter does call with an inappropriate position, remember point two, listen with an open mind and if it is still of no interest, help them to understand why. For example, “It sounds like they want the person to do x and I have only done y.” If it is a technical requirement perhaps a definition will help the recruiter to better understand the requirement.
Be open with your referrals. If you know someone that might be a fit, pass on the email address and phone number.
Feedback after the interview is also important. Share with the recruiter all that you have learned about the company. Whom you met with, what you learned about the position, etc. All of this is important information for the recruiter to evaluate the interview process. Some candidates may feel that the recruiter is going to use that information to help other candidates. This may be true to some extent but it also helps you. Ever walk out of an interview and say, “Darn, I should have told them about the xyz project?” Here is the perfect opportunity to share that information with your recruiter and it will get passed back to the client when they give their feedback to the client.
Be fair with the recruiter. He or she can only share with you what she knows and managers are not always responsive. Keep in touch with them and let them know the status of your search. If you are interviewing with other companies, keep them posted on where you are in the job process. A good recruiter will share that information with the hiring manager and, hopefully, guide the decision making process at a faster pace.
Consider recruiters to be one part of your job search. The key is opportunities and who has them. Recruiters are a source of opportunities because we have been networking and meeting people for years.