by Chrissy Roshak
July 7, 2020
The coronavirus pandemic has significantly changed the way we conduct a job search. Gone are the days of walking into a building with a “Now Hiring” sign out front to speak with the manager. But working with a recruiter is still a great option for an effective job search. Most recruiters are still hard at work, ready to help you find your next job. We’ve put together some tips below for making the most out of your relationship with your recruiter.
Select the right recruiter
Filling out endless job applications and waiting for hiring managers to (hopefully) call can be discouraging. But you can take control of that process by working with a recruiter. And there is no need to wait for them to find your resume and contact you.
The first step is finding the right staffing company. Staffing companies typically specialize in a select industry, or several related industries. Look for one that has jobs in your industry and operates in your area. If you are looking for a warehouse position, for example, you don’t want to contact a staffing company that primarily has IT positions. Instead, look for a company that has open warehouse positions in your area.
When to Call a Recruiter
Next, go ahead and apply for one of the open positions if you see one you’re interested in. But follow your application up with a phone call to really get the ball rolling. An e-mail will work , but a phone call will give you a chance to develop a working relationship with a recruiter who knows about new jobs in your area as soon as they open. If they already have a good candidate in mind, they might even fill a new job before the job ad ever goes public. Building a good relationship with your recruiter could mean they ask if you want the job before the ad goes up.
When you speak with your recruiter, try to give them a sense of who you are and what you’re looking for. The goal is to leave a positive impression so the recruiter will want to contact you as soon as the next position opens. Building a positive relationship could open doors to job opportunities you otherwise wouldn’t have access to.
Checking in with your recruiter
Once you’ve developed a relationship with your recruiter, plan to check in with them regularly. You can e-mail, call, or text, but you want to make sure you’re still at the front of their mind when they get a new job order. You can let them know that you’re just checking in to see if anything new has opened up that you would be a good fit for.
But there are some other great reasons to check in with your recruiter, too. If any of your contact information has changed, let your recruiter know about it right away. You don’t want to miss a job opportunity because you changed your phone number and they couldn’t reach you! It’s also worth contacting your recruiter if your job search criteria has changed. If you’re suddenly available during different hours than you initially discussed, or purchased a car and no longer rely on public transportation, make sure your recruiter knows about it. These factors can affect whether or not the recruiter would contact you about new jobs.
Give your resume a makeover
Guess who looks at resumes all day long and knows exactly what a good resume looks like? Your recruiter! Whether you’re building your first resume, updating an old one, or just want to know if yours is designed to get results, your recruiter can tell you. Don’t be shy about asking them if they can review your resume and help you edit it. Your recruiter wants you to get the job, and will want to make sure you’re putting your best foot forward when they send your resume over to a hiring manager.
Be open to new opportunities
One of the major benefits if speaking directly with a recruiter is the ability to let them know that you’re open to a variety of different opportunities. If their only interaction with you is an application for an order picker position, they might not realize that you also qualify for a forklift position they’re trying to fill. When you speak with your recruiter, make sure to mention which types of jobs you have experience doing, and the kinds of jobs you are open to applying for. Your recruiter might even be able to help you get a foot in the door in a completely new role if they can demonstrate that you have a strong work ethic and some transferable skills.
What about the Pay?
Be honest with your recruiter about your pay expectations. Specify your ideal salary goal and the lowest you’re willing to take. If you’re unsure, go ahead and ask your recruiter what typical pay looks like in a particular industry in your area. (alternatively you can check Payscale or check job openings on Indeed to see what most companies are offering). Aim for a reasonable range of pay. You don’t want to miss out on a job you would love if the pay is lower than your dream salary. But don’t be too vague. Your recruiter might stop calling if you said you’re open to anything, but consistently turn down jobs because the pay is too low. Specify a realistic pay range up front for the best results. Ultimately higher pay for you benefits your recruiter, so you can rest assured they’ll work on your behalf to negotiate the best rate.