I am a recruiter. If you don’t know what I do, don’t worry. My dad still thinks I am Bill Gates’ right hand man. He’s proud of me, so I just let it go.
My function in the hiring process is simple. I am a middle man. I listen to hiring manager needs, go out and find candidates, submit them to the manager and then hope the stars are aligned.
When I receive a new job order, the first thing I do is hit my network. I’ve been in the business for several years and like all good recruiters I have a large network of professional associates built up on sites such as LinkedIn and Google+. (I reserve my Facebook relationships for family and friends.) You, as a professional, should have an account on at least one of the networking sites out there. [Handy side note: EVERYTHING you post on the internet is written in ink. Permanent, tattoo ink that cannot be erased without pain and scarring. It can be buried with a bunch of other stuff, but it’ll always be there. I’ve seen a lot of people get/lose jobs because of the information they post online. For tips on managing your online presence read this great CAC article: http://www.cancerandcareers.org/en/looking-for-work/online-image.]
Once I have the ball rolling on leads, I then hit the net. Monster, Dice, and CareerBuilder are all great sites for resume posting. Something to remember: The big three are free for you the job seeker, but companies pay a LOT of money to post jobs and access your information. This typically means large companies with larger marketing budgets. If you’re looking to get into a smaller company, stick to the free/low cost sites.
One such site is CraigsList, where it’s free to post your resume, and it’s free for me the recruiter to search for you. It’s also very inexpensive for employers to post jobs. Because it’s so cheap, the scammers run rampant. As with anything, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Word to the wise: NEVER NEVER NEVER give too much information when you first reply to a post. If there is no company listed, give your name, email, and a brief introduction max. In this world of professional scammers, it’s better to be cautious.
So, let’s talk about posting your resume and how to get noticed. Here are a few of the things I tell friends and professionals alike.
- Gone are the days of the 1 page resume. Nothing fits on one screen, so if you need to spill over to a second page in order to sufficiently explain your skills and experience, then do so.
- Be clear, concise, and to the point. You have to understand that yours is one of the 200+ resumes I view on a daily basis. Bullet points are good. Storybooks are not.
- Where you post your resume should determine how much information you put on it. On the Big Three, feel free to include Name, City, State, Email and Phone number. When posting on CraigsList, DO NOT put your contact information. First and Last name, and mark your email as confidential.
- Regarding references, “References Available Upon Request” is sufficient. Do not give them out until you’re asked. I’ve seen recruiters and sales people add references to their call sheets for solicitation. This potentially could tarnish those references’ impression of you.
- It should go without saying, but you’d be amazed at how many spelling and grammar errors I see on a daily basis. Make sure you know the difference between their, there, and they’re, and for goodness sake, spell your name right. I saw a resume the other day and the guy spelled his name: Watler. REALLY??
Now that I’ve found a resume that I like, after searching through 100’s or even 1000’s of candidates, I reach out.
- When you post your resume, please make sure to regularly check your email and voicemail. Some recruiters prefer to contact you via email, some will just pick up the phone If you wait too long to call a recruiter back, there’s a good chance the job will be filled.
- When speaking with a recruiter, treat it like a mini job interview. If possible, try to be on a land line, or in a place with good reception. Dropped calls are frustrating for all.
- If you leave voicemail, please speak slowly and leave your telephone number twice. This gives the recruiter time to grab a pen, and write the message down. It’s easier for you to say it twice than for me to replay the message when your cell cuts out on the second to last number.
You’re likely going to have a lot of questions for your recruiter, and my job is to explain as much to you as possible. Rate range, job duration, company information, how long the position has been open, manager personality, etc. My job is to make the candidate experience as pleasant as possible, and help the manager fill their open job quickly.
And at the end of the day, I know I’m putting folks back to work, one resume at a time.
Kathy Akers has over 10 years of experience recruiting in the high tech/information technology field. After losing a dear friend to breast cancer, she is passionate about cancer research helping those that are not able to help themselves.