Recruiters can be of tremendous help in your job search. Most often they are the gate keepers to the first interview. Gaining their help gives you a big advantage in today's competitive job market. Recruiters fall into two basic categories. Either they are part of a Human Resources team of an organization or they are external third-party recruiters. Regardless, all recruiters have one job: to provide hiring managers with the best possible candidates.
With that in mind, these three tips for getting recruiters to help you apply to all recruiters.
- Provide them a user-friendly resume.
Your resume is the recruiter's tool to help convince hiring managers that you are a good fit for the job. The more time and effort you put into your resume the better your chances of convincing the recruiter to present you as a candidate.
There are two vital elements to your resume that will be of great help to recruiters. First, it must reflect all the key words that describe the qualifications of the position. This allows the recruiter to convince the hiring manager that you qualify for the job. Second, your resume should be full of accomplishments which give the recruiter important selling points on your behalf. Think of your resume as a selling tool to convince hiring managers that you are the best possible candidate and that you are ready to step in and solve their business problems.
- Demonstrate polished interview skills.
From the moment a recruiter calls you he/she is judging how well you will present yourself in a face to face interview with the hiring manager. How well you interview reflects on the recruiter. If you do well you make the recruiter look good and he will go out of his way to cooperate with you in helping you through the interview process. If you fail to impress the hiring manager it will embarrass the recruiter and he'll most likely never present you to another hiring manager.
Before a recruiter calls you make sure your interview skills are top notch. That means working out good answers to the toughest interview questions. Practice out loud your responses to questions that have made you nervous in the past. To name a few, make sure you know how to answer questions like:
"What would you do if ...?"
"Tell us your strengths and weaknesses."
"Tell me about a time when you ...."
"Why did you leave your last employment?"
- Be thankful.
A good recruiter works hard behind the scenes to insure that the interview process runs smoothly. It is a thankless job at best. Once the interviews start the recruiter is very often forgotten in the candidates enthusiasm to impress the hiring manager. Since the recruiter can be of help to you throughout the interview process it pays to acknowledge their support with a thank you note after each interview.
For best results take the time to send a hand-written thank you note that reflects genuine appreciation for their time and effort. Use this opportunity to express your enthusiasm for the job and mission of the organization. This little bit of effort will return to you in added cooperation of the recruiter when you need information about the status of the job opening.
When you extend uncommon courtesy and take the time to provide recruiters the selling tools (your resume and interview skills) you go a long way in building a solid working relationship that will reap benefits for years to come. In short, recruiters can be your best friend or they can be the screen that keeps you out of the running for great jobs. A lot of it depends on you.