What would motivate a recruiter to call you? That is a question you must confidently answer, if you are serious about career advancement. Your response should differentiate you from other individuals who have similar experience. It should reflect your personal brand, which does not only include your education, experience, job titles, and job description. Your brand is your individual track record of success, including your accomplishments and their impact on past employers.
Whether a recruiter is working as an in-house Talent Acquisition Professional or as a third-party recruiter working for a Staffing or Recruiting Firm, they have several objectives in common. Their job is to present the best talent in the market, who have the experience, credentials, skills, and stability required by Hiring Authorities. They understand that often the best candidates for their open requisitions are employed, and not conducting an active search. They want to recruit, interview, and present top talent who will become engaged and retained employees.
When a company hires a third-party recruiter, they do not want them to present the same candidates who have already responded to their website or job board postings. They expect recruiters to present qualified passive candidates, who would accept another job if the opportunity represented career advancement. In addition, hiring authorities will only interview candidates who possess the exact experience, skills, credentials, and stability they require.
Understand that most third-party recruiters specialize in a niche, profession, industry, or specific job titles. Some only represent direct hire positions while others offer contract or temporary opportunities. Connect online and make yourself visible on the most common resources recruiters utilize. The time to develop a relationship with a recruiter who specializes in your profession or industry is before you need their services. When they understand what you see as your next career move, they will reach out when they have the opportunity you have described.
When you interview with an in-house Talent Acquisition Professional, include them in your professional network even if you are not hired. Stay in touch because you never know when the person hired does not work out or accepts a counteroffer from their past employer. Often a similar new opportunity becomes available and you want the recruiter to contact you.
Recruiting has been, is, and always will be a relationship building profession. The hiring process often becomes so high-tech that the human element often becomes secondary unless you have established relationships with recruiters throughout your career. So often they represent opportunities that are not advertised and if it represents your next logical career move, you want the recruiter to think of you first. Also, never underestimate the power of a referral. Let your personal and professional network know the type of opportunities you would consider, so they can refer you when a recruiter reaches out to them.
Next, let’s discuss LinkedIn. LinkedIn is the social media site most often utilized by recruiters. LinkedIn has over 722 million members and is the primary social network for professionals to connect, share, and learn. A strong presence on LinkedIn is necessary for anyone who is interested in looking for growth opportunities and to connect with other professionals. LinkedIn is the high-tech equivalent of attending a networking event. Your profile should highlight your track record of success and entice the reader to connect.
Recruiters strategically read and review LinkedIn profiles which should read like a mini sales presentation versus restating facts included in your resume or CV. Your profile creates a recruiter’s first impression, and often determines whether they proactively reach out to you or click to review someone else’s profile. They will review your endorsements and recommendations and determine if they have common connections who could provide them with additional information. So often your first interview is conducted without your knowledge, and you are either screened in or eliminated from consideration based on your LinkedIn profile.
Another great way to position yourself with recruiters is to join LinkedIn Groups. First, identify groups that are supported by your peers, supervisors, and other high achievers in your profession. Based on your position, industry, and the information you entered in your profile, LinkedIn will suggest groups you may want to join. Next, become an active participant by commenting on posts from other members. Regularly write posts on your LinkedIn feed that others will find relevant and share it with the members of your groups. This begins to position you as an expert in your field and will receive the attention of recruiters.
In addition to online networking, take time to identify and join the professional or trade associations who represent your profession. Recruiters understand that members of associations are often high achievers who are established in their career and want to give back. They pay special attention to individuals who accept leadership roles or take on major initiatives. recruiters also network with association members to obtain leads to individuals they respect in their profession.
Another way to gain visibility with recruiters is to contact publications that are read by people in your profession or industry. Ask them what hot topics they plan to cover in future issues. You will be surprised at how easy it is to become published when you submit articles on current hot topics. When your article appears in an industry publication, it sets you apart, enhances your credibility, and the visibility will expose you to resourceful recruiters.
There is tremendous competition for top talent in today’s job market. Great recruiters are just as focused at finding you the right opportunity as they are finding their hiring manager the best person available. They can function as your free career agent. Implement any of these suggestions and you will become that person who is contacted by recruiters on a regular basis to help you advance in your career.
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