1. Be honest!
Honesty isn’t the best policy; it’s the ONLY policy when working with your recruiter. Your recruiter is marketing you to their client base and therefore putting their reputation and client relationships on the line for your employment. Yes, the recruiter is receiving monetary compensation, however, one little white lie could damage a client relationship that they’ve worked very hard to establish.
2. Are you working with other recruiters?
If you are working with more than one recruiter please inform them. Many candidates believe that the more recruiters they are working with (or have working for them) that this will increase the number of interviews they secure thus increasing the likelihood of them securing employment sooner rather than later. Well, here’s the problem with that concept. Many employers utilize more than one recruiting firm to service their openings.
If you are working with more than one recruiter, there is a possibility that 2-3 recruiters are presenting you for the same job opportunity. There’s nothing worse than for a recruiter to make a pitch to an employer about a dynamic candidate that they’re working with who would be an ideal fit for XYZ Company, only to find out that they’re competition submitted that same candidate two days ago. Ouch!
3. Is your resume posted on the job boards (Monster, Careerbuilder, HotJobs)?
This is critical information for your recruiter to know. As a jobseeker, you may be thinking “I’m going to get my resume out there any and every way that I can.” This is not the best approach if you are working with a recruiter. Think about it. Why would a company pay a recruiter for a candidate that they can find on their own? Companies WILL NOT pay recruiters thousands of dollars in fees for a candidate that they can pull from one of the job boards. So, if your resume is posted on the job boards, please let your recruiter know and you can discuss options that will work for both of you.
4. Have you already applied for this position or to this company?
Again, this information is critical. JobSeekers sometimes mistakenly believe that if they applied at XYZ Company and received no response that the recruiter will be able to get them into the door and therefore they don’t tell the recruiter that they have already applied. If the recruiter has a strong relationship with the company then perhaps they will be able to secure you an interview. However, with most companies, if you have applied on your own, via the web or your resume sent to HR, etc. then you remain in their database for 6 months to 1 year, depending on the company. Companies, again, will not pay recruiters thousands of dollars for someone that they have found on their own, through their own advertisements, marketing, etc.
If you are actively sending out your resume or interviewing with various companies, you need to let your recruiter know where you have sent your resume and which companies you have interviewed with thus far. Remember, you’re working on the same team.
5. What’s the “real” reason you left your last job?
All surprises are not good surprises. If you left your last job due to some extenuating circumstances, then it’s best to be upfront with your recruiter and let him/her know versus them finding out after they’ve presented your resume or checked your references. Remember, GOOD RECRUITERS KNOW A LOT OF PEOPLE. Your ex-hiring manager (boss) could have been placed by your recruiter or your recruiter may have a strong relationship with an HR manager or VP at your previous employer and therefore able to obtain “off the record” info. It’s best to err on the side of caution and refer to #1 (Be honest).
6. Be prepared to discuss blemishes, education, criminal background, etc.
If you are 10 credits shy of your degree, tell your recruiter. If you have a DUI from 5 years ago, tell your recruiter. If you are two years out of bankruptcy, tell your recruiter. Again, honesty is the only policy. Most companies today run a criminal background check, a credit check, and employment history background check as well as confirm your degree. If you’re honest with your recruiter about your blemishes, he/she can assist you with explaining them to a potential employer during an interview. Yes, we can coach you through it! However, we can’t assist you if we don’t know all the facts.
Your recruiter is on your side and is your partner in your job search. If you treat him/her as your partner and follow these 6 steps you’ll enjoy a wonderful relationship that could last throughout your career (you never know when you’ll need him/her again). Don’t forget that recruiters LOVE referrals! Our philosophy is “good people know good people.” So, if you’re pleased with your recruiter, don’t forget to tell your friends.
Kapstone Recruiting & Training Services