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Working With Recruiters

Working with recruiters can help you to find the right job for you at the time that you need it. 

However, not every job seeker could or should work with a recruiter, so it is wise to find out who needs a recruiter and why. These business professionals aim to match the best candidate with the right job opening, often after being hired by the company to seek out that future employee. Recruiters are usually compensated once a successful job application is completed and a new member of staff is hired.

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Working with a recruiter could be beneficial for various reasons, not least of which is the guidance a recruiter can offer during the application process. These professionals work in the job search industry, meaning they are the utmost experts in applications, interviews, correspondence with a potential employer and more.

As business professionals, recruiters are in the best position to help a candidate to successfully navigate the sometimes complex process that is finding a job.

What is a recruiter?

A recruiter is a business professional who, most likely, works within a recruiting agency. These professionals aim to match a candidate with a job opening to the satisfaction of both the employer and employee.

Sometimes, a recruiter gets paid based upon the success of the hiring process, rather than based on the time it takes to complete the process. Because of that, it is in the best interest of the recruiter to effectively identify the right match and to do everything possible to make it a reality.

A recruiter should know the application process intimately. This makes using a recruiter a great asset for any job applicant since the advice and input from a recruiter should help the applicant to be successful.

Keep in mind that there are two types of recruiters who you might interact with, although their roles are different. These are:

  1. The traditional recruiter: Also known as a headhunter, the traditional recruiter works for an agency and aims to match candidates with various companies.
  2. The in-house recruiter: Some companies will hire a full-time recruiter for in-house positions. This type of recruiter only finds candidates for this one specific company.

When You Should Use a Recruiter

A recruiter should not be used by every job applicant in every role or industry. However, there are certain industries and job roles where recruiters are very common. Knowing the difference can save you time and effort so you know what to expect in your job search.

You should consider using a recruiter if you are seeking a higher-level management position in a company. These positions are larger investments for a company to make, so the accuracy of hiring is of vital importance. Recruiters who specialize in the industry you work in can be a great asset in your job search, since that professional should have an extensive network within your niche market. The connections a recruiter can have with hiring managers individually and with companies at large could help you to rise above the other candidates for a position.

A recruiter in your industry can also best prepare you for an interview. Again, due to the personal contacts and connections that a recruiter must have to be successful, your recruiter should have a grasp on the style of an interview the company prefers, as well as knowing who will conduct the interview and how to best handle it. Your recruiter can, therefore, be a valuable asset as you continue through the application process.

If you are vying for a highly coveted role or are in a higher level of management, then a recruiter is probably a wise choice for your job search. If you are looking for lower-level roles, then you are less likely to need these services.

That does not mean, however, that you should ignore the outreach done by a recruiter or by an agency. Opportunities can come up at any time, so be prepared and know where you are headed on your career path to make the best choices for you.

Recruiter Red Flags

Beyond the lower-level employees on a management scale, there are others who do not need the services of a recruiter. There are also times that you should not use specific recruiters or recruiting agencies due to red flags that come up in your interactions. The following should be recognized as warning signs that you should not work with this recruiter:

  • A recruiter who seems less interested in your career goals and more interested in pushing forward with a poorly matched job.
  • A recruiter who ask very personal questions or who do not seem to focus on the professional aspects of your life and work.
  • A recruiter who does not understand your industry or the precise role you play within it.

Beyond those red flags to watch for with recruiters, you should also consider your opportunities to conduct your own successful job search. If you feel that you can find and apply for a job on your own, successfully navigating the application and interview process, then you might not require the services of a recruiter.

If you talk to a recruiter but feel that you can be successful on your own, do not be afraid to withdraw and simply move forward alone.

Finding the Right Recruiter for You

If you do want to work with a recruiter for your job search, then you need to find the right recruiter for you. Remember, a recruiter should understand your industry as well as your particular role and career path within the industry. Failing to have that insider knowledge will not allow the recruiter to truly help you in this process.

Typically, a recruiter working in your industry will make it known that his or her specialty covers your interests, so you will be able to identify the right recruiter early in your search.

A great way to find a reliable recruiter is to reach out to your own personal and professional networks. Ask around for recommendations, especially within your industry, but also note the importance of professionalism in this stage. If you are employed but seeking new opportunities, be cautious in asking around for assistance. If you are unemployed, then you face no consequences in making it widely known that you want the help of a recruiter to land the perfect job.

Always talk to a recruiter by phone or in person to get a more comprehensive idea of his or her experience and abilities. An online profile and a series of emails can be a helpful start to knowing a recruiter, but phone calls and meetings will grant you better insight. Make sure you feel comfortable with and confident in this professional’s capabilities so you can move forward in your job search.

Working with the right recruiter can be a highly beneficial option for you. You might find yourself working with the same recruiter in a few years’ time as you are ready to take another step forward in your career, so keep in touch and be sure to keep your recruiter updated on your professional track.