It’s no longer enough to hope the right recruiter will simply discover you. Instead, you must act strategically to establish and maintain a long-term relationship with a recruiter. Here are our best tips on how to develop recruiter relationships.
Step #1: Do your research
Before starting your search, think about the characteristics you’re looking for in a recruiter. For example, if you have a very specialized skill set, explore recruiters who work specifically in your niche. Or, identify recruiters with experience placing candidates within a specific industry. We’ve prepared some tips for you here: How to Select the Right Recruiter for Your Next Job Search.
Step #2: Create your personal brand
We all know first impressions are everything – and your online presence is no different. For example, when recruiters see your LinkedIn profile for the first time: They see your name, photo, headline, and two recent positions. Use this real estate to communicate your own unique value proposition: What are the most important qualities you bring to the table? How do you want to convey that message? Check out How to Write a Professional LinkedIn Headline [+ 15 Inspiring Examples] to get started!
Step #3: Get ready to connect!
Make sure you’re visible to recruiters by adjusting your LinkedIn settings and begin reaching out to recruiters who match your selection criteria! Take the following additional steps to maximize your efforts:
- Be sure to check your LinkedIn messages regularly and accept any relevant inbound connection requests from recruiters.
- Join and participate in public and private groups applicable to your profession, employer, or industry.
- Share significant updates from your LinkedIn profile or publish your own articles to demonstrate your unique perspective and professional experience.
Also, consider reaching out to friends or colleagues who have successfully worked with recruiters before. See if they might be willing to forward your resume or make an introduction to the recruiter. Recruiters are more likely to consider a warm referral over cold calls or emails.
Step #4: Keep the recruiter engaged
Once you establish a relationship with a recruiter, it’s crucial to cultivate and nurture the relationship by consistently engaging them. The goal is to stay top of mind without becoming a nuisance. Here are some excellent ways to achieve this balance:
- Join the same LinkedIn groups as your recruiter and interact with their posts.
- Ask if you can schedule regular meetings to sync up with the recruiter directly.
- Refer qualified candidates for another one of their open positions. This is also a great way to show that you have your finger on the industry pulse.
Lastly, remember to apply! Visit the recruiter’s company website and LinkedIn profile to ensure you’re fully aware of their current openings. If you apply for an open role, send a short note to bring your name and resume back to the top of the stack. And, if working with a recruiter lands you an interview, don’t forget to write a thank-you note to help guarantee a lasting impression moving forward. Be sure to read How To Make Your Thank-You Email Stand Out After an Interview for additional tips!