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11 tips for working with IT recruiters

Rich Hein | March 27, 2014
IT is, by its nature, a technical, fast-paced and many times specialized industry. The necessary skills for career advancement are constantly evolving. With legacy systems, changing business goals and the constant march of new technology, companies are hard-pressed to find the necessary talent to keep their organization growing.

Why Is the Company Hiring?

Knowing why the company is putting someone on the payroll can help you better craft your resume and help define your interview preparation. Is this a new or existing position? What happened to the former person in the role? The answers to these questions will help you better formulate a strategy that will get you hired.

Is This Process Confidential?

A good recruiter will reach out to both passive and active candidates. As a result, many times you may be already working at your day job when the recruiter calls. A misplaced email or phone call and you could leave you with a lot of explaining to do.

Request Regular Follow-ups

When you are waiting for news from a recruiter who is submitting your resume and he/she is a no-show, it can get frustrating. No one likes the cold shoulder, so request weekly updates from the recruiter while your resume is being reviewed, even in the case where there is no news to deliver.

What Is the Hiring Timeline?

The experts we spoke with agreed that asking about the timeline is an appropriate and relevant question. A good recruiter will keep you in the loop and let you know if it changes.

Set Clear Boundaries

As you get deeper into the process of working with an IT recruiter, you need to set boundaries to ensure that your resume isn't being used to spam potential hiring managers or that hiring managers aren't receiving duplicate copies of your resume. There are less reputable recruiters out there who will push out resumes to companies that they have no relationship with to try and get a response.

"You need to be firm that your resume is your property, that you will consider making changes that they suggest (after all, this is what we do every day, so we do know what hiring managers tend to look for in a resume) but that they not make any unauthorized changes or send your resume anywhere except where you have agreed to have it sent," says Girardin.

Although Locey says that some companies will transfer your resume to their letterhead and possibly make some changes, you've got to maintain control. The resume is your only connection to most hiring managers. Something so important shouldn't be changed without your OK.

A good recruiter should inform you if any changes are going to be made to your resume. "I would make it clear to the recruiter you are working with they do not have permission to change any of the language on your resume," says Girardin.

Another tip that Girardin offers is that candidates should take the time to meet the recruiter in person wherever possible. "Before you get too far in the process, meet face-to-face with your recruiter. This is a person you are trusting with one of the most important decisions in your life — your career. Some candidates feel this step is not necessary, but I disagree; it's a crucial meeting, "says Girardin.

 

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