How Cold It Is to Call a Recruiter (and Why You Need It)

The latest Bureau of Labor Statistics report says 850,000 jobs were created in the US in June, and who knows – one of them could be your dream job! Or your dream job might be one that hasn’t been invented yet, but it might be if the decision makers at the right company only knew about you, your skills, and your goals.

Whether your ideal job is “something else” besides your current job, or something overspecific, you probably spend a lot of time looking through job postings, hiding on LinkedIn, or even shelling out money for mailings and databases that can point you to the roles you need to fill.

Have you ever thought about going straight to the source and promoting yourself instead of waiting for the hiring manager to post an open gig message? Sure, it sounds like a bold move, but an employer may like bold moves, and if they don’t, it could be a good sign that you and the company are not right for each other anyway. Yes, you can contact a recruiter and schedule a time to, as we say in business, “call.”

According to Tim Sackett, CEO of HRU Tech and author of Correcting Talent: A Leader’s Guide to Recruiting Great Talent .

Get the name of a suitable recruiter

Take some time to find out who is the best contact person for the company you are interested in.

“How do you find them? Chances are LinkedIn and looking for a company and employees who work for that company, and then bringing recruiters from that company to connect, says Sackett, or connecting with someone in that company who works with the type of job you are want and asking them which recruiter is supporting their unit / department / location. “

It’s time to start networking, even if only online. If you’re in the job search area, you’re probably already looking at GlassDoor company reviews and high-profile LinkedIn profiles. Take it a step further and reach out to someone in the audience, even if they don’t have clear hiring opportunities.

Let’s say you want to work as an accountant for a large firm. Put yourself in the shoes of someone who already works there as an accountant. Sure, they’re busy making your dreams come true and everything else, but they are just as ordinary people as you are, and they might be flattered – or just old nosy – if you walk into their inbox looking for direction. It might take you a while to get up the courage to ask a stranger for the recruiter’s name, but it really only takes a few seconds for him to respond. Ideally, they will receive some kind of monetary reward for referring a new employee, so they may be more willing to help a qualified job seeker than you might think for reasons other than pure goodwill. Use this to your advantage.

Or they really could be in it of their own free will.

“Most people on LinkedIn are willing to help you connect if you are in the same profession, in the same geographic region, or better yet, graduate from their school,” Sackett says.

How to contact a recruiter

Once you get the name of a suitable recruiter, you really need to contact them. It can be terrible, so it’s best to prepare.

Make sure your resume is up to date, just like any other material you may need to promote your specific skills, such as portfolios or videos. If you haven’t been able to get a direct recruiter number or are particularly afraid of phone calls, write an email that includes relevant attachments and links, but does not overload them with your life story. (And please work on your aversion to phone calls.)

You want to speak to this recruiter one-on-one to state your position, so you don’t need to supply your opening note with a full cover letter, list of references, or desperate pleas. Include enough information to show that you are qualified, and then ask them to come back to you and let them know that they are ready to talk.

If you received a phone number ahead of time, please skip the timetable email and keep written support for follow-up. Be direct. Show how determined and ambitious you are by calling them directly, but keep your resume and materials handy for reference.

“Get ready to leave a message!” Sackett says. “Ninety-nine percent of recruiters don’t take cold calls, not because they don’t want to talk or find great talent, but because they fill their day with scheduled screening of people they’ve already found. Knowing this, your message should interest them as to why they should make one of their scheduled calls. Explain which position you are interested in and be as specific as possible as most recruiters are working in 25-50 different positions at the same time! “

Write your voicemail message script ahead of time. When you’re writing on the fly, it’s easy to go astray, repeat yourself, or miss out on key details, especially if you’re nervous and the stakes are high. Greet them by name, state the purpose of your call, ask them to send your message indicating that they are ready to chat, thank them for their time and leave your contact details. Boom, you did it.

What to tell the recruiter

Once the recruiter responds to your email or message – or, in some cases, just answers your cold call and starts talking to you – it’s time to state your position.

From now on, treat the conversation like any job interview, even if you reversed roles a bit and this time actually became the bully. Use your resume and previous work for reference and make a clear and compelling argument for why you want to work for the company. Ask if there are any open positions your skills are suitable for, if the recruiter knows of any future openings, and what they would recommend to keep in touch if there are no openings available immediately.

Even if there are no unfilled places in the company, you are now on the recruiter’s radar. If you have the relevant experience and skills, they will not forget you, especially if you go to great lengths to find them , showcase your tenacity and make their job much easier.

Follow up

No matter how the conversation goes, thank the recruiter for their time and reaffirm your commitment to getting a job with the company. If your initial reach was a call and not an email, make sure your follow-up message includes the resume and materials you discussed over the phone so they can review and hopefully circulate around the company.

If time passes without any contact with the recruiter, send them an email asking how they are doing and if anything has changed in the organization.

Whenever you do something new, get a promotion, or even change jobs, let them know in a friendly note. The more relevant your materials are, the more experienced and communicative you are, the more chances you have of finding the right person there, but the recruiter needs to know all the necessary details for this to happen.

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