What Recruiters Want You to Know About Working With Recruiters

By Lana Johnson on February 8, 2018

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There’s never been a better time to look for a new job! After nine years of slow economic growth, the U.S. economy is in high gear with jobs creation happening at a record pace. The labor market is tighter than ever, and whether you’re already on the market for a new job or whether you’re currently employed but ready to make a move, now is the perfect time.

“Great!” you might say, but how do you get started? One of the best ways to make your next step is to work with a professional recruiter. Recruiters typically have access to jobs that you can’t find on your own and they also help you get your foot in the door on an opportunity vs. applying as an unknown. Recruiters also provide invaluable assistance. They give you the “inside scoop” on a job or a company, they prepare you for interviews, and they help you navigate the job offer/acceptance process (including salary negotiation).

Recruiters exist for every type of industry and job category, and there are thousands of recruiting firms or staffing agencies. There are many ways you can find the right recruiter for you, starting with researching the best staffing firms in your area.   

It’s one thing to find a recruiter; it’s another thing to build a great relationship based on mutual trust and respect. How can you make this happen? We asked some of our own recruiters to share their best advice …

The Little Things Are Actually Big Things 

When working with an agency recruiter, you're always being evaluated. Understanding a job seeker is a little like solving a mystery and recruiters pay attention to every clue – everything you do or don’t do - to understand who you are. Anytime you interact with a recruiter, be on your “A” game. Impress us. Be able to dive deep into examples of your work. Have a fantastic social media presence. Show us how you are different than other job candidates. Send thank you notes. Be responsive. Convey passion for what you do. Get us excited about the things that make you a great candidate. When we’re excited about a job seeker, we can get our clients excited.

It’s a team effort, so be prepared to do some work. Prepare for interviews and reflect on your answers to the most common interview questions. If you’re uneasy or uncertain about something like doing a phone interview, check out the resources we offer to help you at each stage of your search. Research the companies and the people we’re arranging for you to meet.

Help your recruiter out. If there are organizations that interest you, tell us. If you see a posting for a role that interests you, let us know. We might not be able to get you into the specific company or role every time, but the more we know about what interests you, the better able we’ll be to match you to opportunities.

Honesty And Transparency 

Be open, honest, and transparent. This is critical. We want to know when something is a great fit for you but it’s just as important that we know when something isn’t right. An issue that goes unaddressed will resurface again down the road. The more we know, the more we will succeed in helping you.

Be completely honest with your recruiter. We're not going to be upset if you’re looking for jobs on your own (in fact, we encourage and expect it) but we want to know what you’re doing so we can be efficient.

If a job isn’t appealing to you, let us know. We won’t be disappointed if you turn a job down but we’d prefer that you let us know as early in the process as possible. Again, we want to save time and be efficient in helping you get what you want and love what you do.  


Communication is paramount! Be patient and realize that recruiters are sometimes working with hundreds of candidates at a time and if you leave a message, you’ll hear back within 24 hours.

Take some shared responsibility and work to stay on your recruiter’s radar, whether it’s a quick email checking in or a quick voice mail or LinkedIn message letting us know that you’re still available. Being proactive helps you stay top-of-mind with a recruiter.

Manage Your Expectations

If a recruiter promises you they will find you a job, beware! We can't and don't place every candidate with whom we work. Even if you’re the most qualified, experienced, professional candidate we’ve met, it usually boils down to timing and sometimes, luck. It’s not uncommon to work with a recruiter for a year before the perfect opportunity presents itself.

Even if we can’t place you, we can be an important resource. Look to us for job search advice, feedback, and networking.

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. In addition to working with a recruiter, you should be networking and applying for jobs on your own. Just keep your recruiter apprised of any changes in your search.

A partnership with a trusted recruiter can boost your job search. Ongoing and clear communication about your goals and activity can optimize your recruiter relationship. Once you have a recruiter you trust and respect, you can stay in touch with them throughout your career to continuously learn about opportunities, to refer friends and family, and to receive support and advice when you need it most.

For more job search and career insights to boost your success, check out our collection of Job Search and Career Resources.

Want to work with top recruiters during your job search? Advanced Resources’ staffing experts invest time to understand you, personally and professionally. We center each search on finding opportunities where your skills and interests can be optimized. We know you want your work to make a difference. We’ll help you get there. View open opportunites and start your search with Advanced Resources today! 



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