Recruiters & Candidates: Remembering the Golden Rule

Recruiters are often put in a bad light. “Head Hunters,” “Poachers,” and a number of other veiled insults have been floating around the recruiting world for decades.

But what both recruiters and candidates alike need to understand is that respect is a two-way street. Understanding that the recruiter is doing their best to respect your career path can be key to building a solid professional relationship with a recruiter as a candidate.

Similarly, always remembering to be mindful of the candidate’s wants and needs is crucial as a recruiter.

Here are some common complaints from candidates and recruiters and how to alleviate them by remembering to treat each other with respect:

Understand Your Role

It is the recruiter’s responsibility to truly assess your fit for a potential position, so as a candidate it’s important to be open, honest, and respectful throughout the engagement, from initial conversation up to passing your information along to an employer.

For both parties, attitude goes a long way. As a recruiter, ensure that the conversation is more about building a professional relationship than making commission.

Be Patient

Often, candidates have difficulty understanding why the hiring process is taking so long. At organizations across the globe, the time to fill a position is longer than ever before. This means the recruiter is frequently left waiting for the employer or hiring manager to narrow down their decision or make contact at all. Knowing that the recruiter is not simply ignoring the candidate can be helpful.

As the recruiter, remember that this is the candidate’s career. It’s understandable they’d be antsy in hearing about what comes next. Practice frequent communication when you can to maintain a steady pipeline of talent instead of letting disengagement lead to dropoff.

Be Open

Recruiters understand that it’s uncomfortable for a candidate to talk about the intricate details of their professional career, especially when it comes to salary. While disclosing salary is a personal choice, try to be open and willing to talk to the recruiter about your career. They are simply trying to gain an understanding about your career path so that they can identify opportunities for you.

As a recruiter, understand how difficult it can be to open up about yourself on the spot. Be willing to have multiple conversations with the candidate if they are not yet comfortable opening up to you. This will enhance the professional relationship and benefit both parties in the end.

2 responses on "Recruiters & Candidates: Remembering the Golden Rule"

  1. Greetings,

    Thank you for this excellent article. I couldn’t agree more with your perspective.

    Recruiters likewise, need to use similar thinking when dealing with our paying clients – the firm! They too have to assess our talent, they have to solicit varying opinions and and juggle multiple calendars and that takes time. Undestanding their selection process and the conflicting schedules / personalities they have to manage will go along way to improving both our placment rates and client satisfaction.

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