I often feel like I lead two lives – my working life as a recruiter and my personal life as a wife, mother and friend. I am often asked outside the workplace what I do for a living. When I explain what I do, people often react one of a couple of ways: “wow, that is interesting” (usually from folks who don’t work) or I get “I have recruiters always calling me or messaging me on social media and I usually ignore them.” I often find myself explaining what recruiters actually do and why people should connect with recruiters within their industry.
Developing a good rapport with a recruiter is a great idea whether you are looking to hire someone or you are looking for a new job. I often work with candidates who want a new job and just want to know what I can do for them rather than taking the time to develop a solid working relationship. There are many reasons to develop a relationship with a recruiter in your field but I want to share just a few with you:
1 – Recruiters know the industry they work in – they know who is hiring, who is firing and what the culture is of many organizations. If you take the time to be honest about what you are looking for, a good recruiter will keep that in mind when they are working on new roles. Recruiters often know about open jobs before they are publicly posted and they know the wants of the hiring manager.
2 – If a reputable recruiter in your industry reaches out to you, take the time to respond vs. just ignoring their message. It never hurts to build your network. You just never know when you may be in the need of a new job or you have a colleague/friend who needs a new job. If you have a relationship with a recruiter, you can help others out by connecting them to the recruiter.
3 – All good working relationships are built on trust and it is the same for a candidate/recruiter relationship. The more honest you are about what you want in a new role, the better job a recruiter can do for you. If they know there is NO way you will move out of Chicago, they won’t contact you for out of state roles.
SO the next time a recruiter reaches out on LinkedIn, instead of ignoring the message, think about connecting with them. Be honest – feel free to tell them you are not looking for a new role at this time but happy to connect for future opportunities. You never know – sometimes the perfect job comes along when you aren’t looking!