If you are starting to have doubts about your recruiter, it might be time to jump ship.
As active job seekers, your recruiter should hold your hand through the recruitment process, acting as a partner. Sounds great, right? Unfortunately, this doesn’t always turn out to be the case. Many recruiters are required to meet tight deadlines for their clients, meaning that job hunters are often pushed to the sidelines. If you are starting to have doubts about your recruiter, it might be time to jump ship.
Here are some signs to look out for that might suggest it’s time for a change…
Poor line of communication
It’s part of a recruiter’s job description to make time for our candidates, and this includes keeping a line of communication open at all times. This is especially important during the interview process, as you might need to reschedule an interview or change the location. Your recruiter should always be contactable via mobile or email.
There should also be an expectation that your recruiter will keep you updated while waiting for the outcome of an interview. If you’ve passed, then clear instructions should be given to the next step. If you didn’t pass, then your recruiter should provide feedback detailing why it didn’t work out. If your recruiter is failing to do this, or you feel like you’re constantly chasing after them for some information, then it might be time to look for a new recruiter.
Remember that you’ve put your trust in a recruiter by sharing your CV and possibly even disclosing your salary details. In return, your recruiter should treat you respectfully, and part of that package involves being responsive at all stages of the recruitment process.
Misaligned job recommendations
Due to the target-driven nature of a recruiter’s job, they’re under pressure to contact countless candidates per day. In this situation, he/she may not have taken the time to listen to your needs or career goals – they’re only interested in whether the qualifications on your CV match the client’s brief. If your recruiter doesn’t take the time to sit down for a face-to-face chat or even a phone call, then be very wary about working with them.
If your recruiter is pitching several different companies to you each week, then have your guard up. It’s highly unlikely that every one of these roles is matched to your needs.
Lack of advice
A recruiter should act as a mentor throughout the interview process. Once you’ve been shortlisted for an interview with a company, then your recruiter should coach you about how to dress, what to say and provide you with additional tidbits about the company you’re interviewing with. Whether they do this by phone or email, it always plays a crucial role in your success. Your recruiter will have been briefed by the client personally, so they have insight into the company culture and the expectations of the candidate.
Forcing you into accepting an offer
This is a really important point to consider because you, and only you, should be the one to decide whether to accept an offer extended to you by a company. Recruiters will try to push for placements even if they know it’s not what the candidate wants. This is very unprofessional but it can be a reality, and it does happen. If your recruiter spins the following lines to you, then approach with caution:
“You’re not going to get a better offer anywhere else.”
“You weren’t the first choice for this role anyway. If you don’t take it, they can select someone else.”
“The deadline for accepting the offer is tonight, so if you don’t accept right away, it will be taken off the table.”
“The package is far more generous than we were expecting.”
You should never feel like you’re being pushed into an offer. The decision is one that you should be making alone, taking into account the job scope, company, career progression opportunities, and remuneration.
When dealing with recruiters, the most important thing to bear in mind is that they are lucky to have you as a candidate, even though they may try to make you feel like it’s the other way around. There are as many “cowboy” recruiters out there as there are trained, skilled recruiters. The latter will take a genuine interest in your welfare. You just need to find out which category your recruiter falls into.
Whatever stage of the recruitment process you’re at, we’re always happy to chat. Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org