Confessions Of A Recruiter: Why Some Recruiters Suck

Confessions Of A Recruiter: Why Some Recruiters Suck

It’s time to tackle the elephant in the room. Yes – some recruiters suck. They are hard at work giving all recruiters a bad rap. I continue to read blogs about different candidate’s experiences working with recruiters and am always blown away by the negative ones. Why would I torture myself reading negative things about my peers? I read them because it allows me to identify with candidates in a different way and because I can learn from them! But candidates, do not lose hope. I promise not all recruiters suck. Here are three key differences between bad recruiters and great recruiters.

1. Job Orders – Are they even real?

Bad recruiters will scour job boards and company websites to find a job to put up on their own site and pretend to be recruiting for. They do this without having any authorization or engagement from the actual employer at all. The sneaky idea behind this skewed strategy is that if they have a stack of pre-qualified candidates, they can potentially win a client over. This usually backfires because they forget the most important elements of recruiting – relationship and trust. It is SO detrimental for candidates that fall into this trap. They think they are being submitted and considered for the role, but unfortunately, end up missing out on the opportunity completely. They end up kicking themselves, realizing that they could have worked with a recruiter who has official authorization all along.

Our recruiting team never works on a role without having a partnership and permission from our client. Why would we work on something if the client isn’t interested or we don’t accurately know what they are looking for? Our jobs are real and we engage with our clients on a regular basis to make sure we are recruiting for all the right skills, the need is still there, the candidate has been properly submitted, and of course get constant feedback. We don’t need to win the client over, we have already developed an open and honest relationship with the hiring manager so that we can then create open honest relationships with candidates.

2. Feedback – That black hole you were trying to avoid? It’s back.

Bad recruiters go dark and leave candidates wondering. Everyone is busy. But no matter their reason for leaving someone hanging, it isn’t good enough. Candidates can start to invent their own reasons of why the recruiter went dark: they didn’t like me, I wasn’t a fit for this job and should not apply to similar roles, I am not a qualified candidate, etc. It just takes a toll on their self-image and of course what they perceive of recruiters in general. When this happens, relationships can be damaged.

At JSG, we provide feedback no matter what. If we have not received feedback ourselves, (it happens) we will let you know! If the client decides to pass on you, we will let you know. We make ourselves available at all times – we want a relationship with you! Heck, call me when you’ve had a bad day, or when you’re excited about something, call me once a month, I guarantee I will answer!

3. Annoying- You are spamming me, please stop.

Bad recruiters will send you details of jobs you are not qualified for. They choose to jump the gun and entertain a sloppy search. “Oh, you enjoy drinking java with your friends? Let me just contact you about a job that requires experience with the Java programming language!”

At JSG, we keep our searches tight. We double and triple check our lists and contacts to ensure that we are only contacting the most qualified candidates – and that is key in recruiting.


Let me just finish by saying, I am not perfect, nor do I have all the answers. But I am very agile and I will work with you, for you. So, I have come to appreciate the positive and negative posts about recruiters and I will continue to read them. But in every profession, you have your bad apples. My point is that not all recruiters are bad.