As a recruiter, I talk to hundreds of candidates on a weekly basis. Some of them have had great experiences and some not so great. One of the biggest complaints I get from candidates is that after they talk with a recruiter once or twice, they never get another call. A candidate is excited about the opportunity, important details have been hashed out, the resume was submitted, the recruiter has built up a relationship of trust (and sometimes even a friendship is beginning to form). All of a sudden 3 days go by, then 4 days with no word. Now the candidate calls to get an update or feedback and the recruiter won’t answer the phone. Sound familiar? If your recruiter has gone dark, here are the steps you should take:
Understand why it’s happening
There are a few different reasons that recruiters stop communicating with candidates. Sometimes, there’s a glitch in tracking or technology and it just slips through the cracks. This is usually an honest mistake. Unfortunately, it’s often because the recruiter gets too caught up in championing a more qualified candidate, or the deal with their client falls through, or they just decide they “don’t have time” to follow up.
Know your value
I don’t know about you, but putting my career in the hands of someone is not something I do lightly, and neither should you. Once you understand that you deserve open and honest communication, it will be much easier to relay that attitude to the recruiter you’re working with.
Communicate your frustrations
If a recruiter won’t communicate, respectfully share with them your frustration. Let them know that good or bad news is better than no news at all. You may be the catalyst that changes a bad recruiter into a great recruiter. It is all about the realization that we are affecting people’s lives every time we talk with them.
Don’t assume all recruiters are the same
Just like with any profession, there are good and bad recruiters. It’s important for recruiters to see candidates as more than a means to an end. Great recruiters not only understand how much a candidate is worth to them at the moment, but that more than a onetime payday, the relationship has value that is not always able to be quantified in numbers. Great recruiters know that each phone call is how they survive and beyond professionalism, common courtesy sets them above the rest.
How do you know if you’re working with a great recruiter? Set communication standards upfront. Ask, “when should I expect to hear back from you?” “When is the best time to contact you?” “Do you prefer communicating by phone or email?”
Just remember great recruiters will expect the same courtesy and professionalism – relationships are built not entitled