Using_Recruiters by yaofenjin


Foreword.................................................................................................................................................................. 3

Introduction ............................................................................................................................................................ 9

Myths of the Job Boards................................................................................................................................... 10

Types of Recruiters ........................................................................................................................................... 13

Where Does a Recruiter “Fit” in Your Job Search? ................................................................................ 15

How to Identify and Approach a Recruiter .............................................................................................. 17

Myths of Working With a Recruiter............................................................................................................ 21

How to Work With a Recruiter: Respect Confidentiality................................................................... 23

How to Work With a Recruiter: Be Credible .......................................................................................... 25

How to Work with a Recruiter: Be Honest.............................................................................................. 26

How to Work With a Recruiter: Be Fair ................................................................................................... 27

How to Work With A Recruiter: Be Consistent ..................................................................................... 28

How to Work With a Recruiter: Follow Up ............................................................................................. 30

How to Work With a Recruiter: Be Prepared......................................................................................... 32

How to Work With a Recruiter: Be Respectful ...................................................................................... 34

How to Work With a Recruiter: Communicate...................................................................................... 36

How to Work With a Recruiter: Be a Fountain of Information ....................................................... 38

Q & A: What Jobseekers Ask About Recruiters...................................................................................... 40

Top Tips to Leverage a Recruiter................................................................................................................. 42

Glossary ................................................................................................................................................................. 44

Resources .............................................................................................................................................................. 45

Additional Career Products............................................................................................................................ 46

Meet the Authors................................................................................................................................................ 48


A-List Solutions, Inc.

Jeff’s blog:

Craig’s blog:

Like any industry, there are standout professionals who have honed their craft and can
offer sage advice. The recruiting industry is no different. With the thousands of recruiters
actively working, we have found Peggy and Carl to be top notch recruiting leaders who
have contributed in many ways to the industry. Of course, Craig loves the fact that Peggy is
a Sooner—instant credibility! We often enjoy hearing their contributions at conferences or
blogtalkradio shows and love their knowledge of the employment world.

We firmly believe finding a job in any economy takes creativity, tenacity, and teamwork.
Yes, teamwork. Posting your resume on a job board and going to a few local meetings for
job seekers in not nearly enough effort to land the perfect job. Recruiters can be a value
part of your job search team, but working with them effectively requires knowledge of how
their process works.

Recently we were asked, “What is the most popular question you are asked by job
seekers?” The answer to that one is clear. In some form or another, many ask, “Do you
have a job for me?” or “Can you find me a job.” Yes, the recruiter is the “keeper” of many
job searches. And yes, if you find a recruiter who specializes in your industry, he or she
may even have an active search they can share with you. However, if you do not
understand the process or do not play by the rules, you could very well miss out on this
opportunity. Rule #1 as you will see: Most agency recruiters work for and are paid by
companies, not job seekers.

In this book, Peggy and Carl leverage their many years of industry experience to share the
value of working with recruiters even though they do not work for you. This book will
dispel myths about the recruiting process and clearly share the pitfalls many job seekers
discover the hard way. They outline the rules of the road with clear examples and describe
how candidates can develop valuable relationships with recruiters not just for one job
search, but for an entire career.

One key area that tends to be a mystery for job seekers working with recruiters is
communication. Not just the etiquette required, but active listening and following
recruiter’s advice. Peggy and Carl have written a tried-and-true recipe for all job seekers to
follow. When relationships degrade, it usually stems from poor communication. Let this
book be your guide to ensure a strong relationship is built with your network of recruiters.

In a job search, you need to take advantage of a recruiter’s wealth of insider information
and connectivity to your industry. To do this, you need to understand how you evolve from
just another candidate knocking on their door, to one who they will take under their wing
and help connect to a desired position.

The material in this book is information that we, too, share with our candidates. When
asked to write the forward to the book, we graciously accepted knowing we are recruiters
from the same camp. We have used a consistent process and strong ethics to be successful.
We do our best to educate job seekers (and clients) on how to have a successful search. But
most of all, the four of us genuinely enjoy our role in bringing talented candidates to
deserving companies.

We hope you learn how to optimize your relationships with recruiters by reading this book.
We think you will find value in broadening your approach and will reap the rewards of
better teamwork!


On Twitter: @BillBoorman and @trulondon1

Peggy McKee and Carl Chapman Sr. are a rare breed of recruiter that have managed to
combine a clear understanding and application of the digital world, whilst maintaining old
fashioned recruitment values and practices. I call it new tools, old rules.

I have admired their individual and collective work for some time. As an ex-recruiter, with
27 years working in and around recruiting, I understand the difference working with a
good recruiter can make. If my pipes burst, I would call a plumber. If I need my books
doing, I call my accountant. I need someone with the skill and experience I need to get the
job done best. If I were to want a job, this would be no different; my first port of call would
always be a recruiter.

Recruiters do not run charities. They will find you a job because that’s how they make their
money. The easier you make it for them to work with you, the more likely you are to be

successful in your quest. This book will give you the inside track and enable you to position
yourself as first on the recruiters list.

Follow the lessons Carl and Peggy lay out in this great resource, and be ambassadors in
your job search.

Best of luck.

Toronto, March 07, 2010

Hey, Job Hunter.

The recruiter isn't your fairy godmother. She's not a social worker either. She works for the
hiring manager, not for you. That's lesson number one.

Lesson number two? The recruiter can help you. So when I call you up out of the blue, don't
freak out and say, "How'd you get my name!"

It's my job to get your name. And why am I calling you at work? Well, where else am I going
to find people who can do the job I'm trying to fill?

I'm not implying, here, that no one knows how recruiters work. Lots of people do. But not
everyone. And those who don't come across sounding like hillbillies, totally out of tune with
the modern world and unable to see a gift horse when it stares them in the face.

Do you want to sound like a hillbilly? Do you want to shoot yourself in the foot? Of course,
you don't! So, read this book.

I run an online, call-in radio show about recruiting and Peggy McKee and Carl Chapman are
two of my favorite guests. In fact, Carl's a regular caller. I call him The Recruiting Rotweiler.
And, Peggy is famous for her 1-minute videos. Remember Chili Palmer?

She stares you in the face and says, "Hey, Job-Hunter, look at me." Both of them are no-
nonsense recruiters who are in business to make money.

They're not going to pat you on the back and tell you how wonderful you are. They get paid
when they put you in a job and they want to tell you how to make     that easier - for them
and for you.

Do I agree with everything they say? No. For instance, right off the bat, they claim that: "The
best jobs are not on job board listings". In fact, there's some pretty good jobs on job boards

-- but the larger claim being made here is that job boards don't negate the value of
recruiters. And I can tell you a story that supports my claim and theirs.

I just placed a plant manager who had not seen the ad for the exact same position. This
fellow had been out of work for four months and was actively looking.

He had a profile online for anyone to see but it wasn't well-done and wasn't easy to find. (I
didn't find him through it). And, at first, our client refused to see him because of the
company he had come from. One of my partners on the search had to investigate the logic
behind that bias and demonstrate that it was unreasonable.

In the end, this fellow was chosen over four other candidates. So, in spite of the ad, this hire
could not have taken place without the presence of recruiters working for themselves, the
company and the candidate at the same time.

That means I can disagree with Carl and Peggy on specific issues - and so can you -and still
know that they're smart, they're nice and they're pros with lots of personal experience who
present a meaningful overview. And, in fact, you'll find, if you read past their initial claim,
that they know the value of job boards and take everything important about them into

Professional Search Group, Inc.
Founder of Verbal Summary ( An innovative tool for combining
audio with a resume for a much more dynamic and effective introduction.

It’s about time a book came along to help the job seeker negotiate the fine art of working
with recruiters. Carl Chapman, Sr. and Peggy McKee have done it well!

Peggy was one of the very first recruiters I noticed that would freely share her tips across
the internet and is highly regarded for her knowledge within the medial sales community.
Carl is known among many as an authority in all facets of the recruiting industry. Together
they have created a “must have” for any job seeker!

Having worked with thousands of job candidates in my 20+ year career as a professional
recruiter I can tell you first hand: A great relationship with a recruiter can often times make
all the difference.

There has never been a more appropriate time than now for an insider’s view on how to
make the very most of your headhunter encounters. Most, if not all, job seekers are now

facing the stiffest competition of their careers. Knowing how to leverage the opportunities
that may come through a recruiter’s connection has always been important. Today, that
knowledge it is absolutely critical.

In this book you will find straight-forward information as seen by veterans in the recruiting

Wishing you success.

A husband, Dad, Recruiter, and business owner of CGP Network – a recruiting firm with
clients throughout the US.

For information on CGP network, go to and read more of
Andy’s “takes” on your career at or you may contact Andy by
e-mail at

When Carl Chapman and Peggy McKee asked me to be a small part of this project, I was
honored. I know these two good people through a large community of recruiters on

Through this new media, I have gotten to know some great people and amazingly have
formed new work partnerships with likeminded recruiting professionals all over the
world. Simply put - Carl and Peggy “get it”. The time they have taken to put this resource
together for you is testimony to their professional credibility – the only thing a recruiter
really has to offer.

When I was asked to write part of the foreword for the e-book you now possess, I was
drawn by the title – as you might have been. I think what has allowed me to enjoy a 13 year
career as a generalist recruiter is I think I am the recruiter that will tell you what others

The misnomer of recruiting is as a candidate you think your recruiter exists to find you a
job. Most recruiters genuinely enjoy helping people - but a recruiter is primarily looking to
find their client the right person.

We do not broker people, we broker jobs. Let me manage your expectations for a minute –
you are two things to a recruiter – a human being and a commodity. You need to
understand that. When a recruiter is talking with you, you are a human being. When
speaking with the client, you are a commodity. A good recruiter knows how to treat you
with respect even though you are a product.

As a candidate, what I think you should expect, if not demand is the truth - and I would
suggest you always look for congruence in their words and actions – tempered with the
understanding hiring authorities are often elusive moving targets.

Are you getting facts or generalities? You obviously need facts. Ironically, what you need
from the recruiter is what they need from you.

The best recruiter-candidate relationships are built on respect - like all good relationships
– and clear communication. One last thought, probably the absolute key – once the process
gets rolling – your sense of urgency needs to be amped up.

If your recruiter calls, call them back. A strong sense of urgency indicates interest and
ultimately offers reassurance to the employer – sense of urgency, you control.

Best of success in your job search and career.

Recruiters. Headhunters. Body snatchers. The name by which you refer to them might
depend on which side of the table you’ve been on, but recruiters are often misunderstood.
A recruiter is a facilitator, an information-gatherer, a gatekeeper, and a resource—one that
you should know how to use. If you know how to work with a recruiter, he or she can
be a tremendous asset to you in your job search, as well as your long-term career

The business of a recruiter is to provide top-quality candidates to companies with open job
positions. Simple enough, right? Recruiters make money when the candidate they
provide is hired by the client company. The client (hiring company) pays the recruiting
fee, and everyone wins—the recruiter gets a paycheck, the client gets an outstanding new
employee, and the jobseeker gets a great job.

Confusion arises when the jobseeker believes the recruiter is in the business of finding him
a job. He sends his resume to the recruiter and wants to call and discuss which positions
might be a good fit. He assumes the recruiter will have a list of options available, and he
can decide which ones to choose. This kind of candidate tends to get cranky when the
recruiter fails to respond within a few days of receiving his resume, or doesn’t return his
phone calls.

Here’s what’s important to understand: The candidate isn’t the one writing the
check to the recruiter. The client company is. The recruiter works for the client
company—not the candidate. So, the recruiter isn’t going to spend time chasing the
candidate, offering job opportunity after job opportunity as a service to the candidate. The
recruiter’s mission is to find the perfect candidate for the client company to hire.
The candidate’s mission is to be that perfect candidate.

If you understand how this system works, you can use it to your advantage. The best jobs
are not on job board listings, but a recruiter knows where they are. A recruiter is going to
know the inside information in your industry—who’s looking, who’s growing, who you
don’t want to be within 50 yards of. Once you get submitted for a position, a recruiter will
work with you to get that job (so he gets paid). For you to have the inside track in the job
market, you need to know how to make a recruiter love you.

There are quite a few ideas floating around these days about effective job hunting. The
internet seems to be a never-ending fountain of information and many jobseekers believe
that’s all they need and they can go it alone. For them, online job hunting is the way to go--
they don’t need no stinkin’ recruiter muddying up the waters. It’s pretty easy to counter
these arguments, so here goes:

   1. Job postings should be free. It’s simply a way for candidates
      and employers to connect.

We don’t agree.


   A. Advertising costs. Should a TV commercial be free? Last time I checked, Super Bowl
      ads cost well over $1MM per minute, and they don’t guarantee results either. Job
      boards are advertising with the added benefit of being direct response.

   B. Connecting with the right person to hire can happen in many ways – direct
      application, research, sourcing, third party recruiters, referrals, etc. In today’s
      competitive world, companies must use many sources to find great candidates.

   2. Employers are struggling with the quality vs. quantity gap in
      online recruiting. Job boards provide quantity while hiring
      managers desire quality.

It depends on what online tools they are using and how they use them. People are still
getting quality resumes and applicants from the big job boards, if they focus their efforts on
quality. There are also many other online resources which can augment candidate flow
with quality prospects.

   3. The value of job boards is waning because jobseekers can go
      directly to company websites.

Not really. The value of large job boards (for employers) comes from large candidate
pools. The value of large job boards (for candidates) comes from the ability to find multiple
jobs in their field from many employers--something they can’t do by visiting Microsoft’s
career center. This is what is driving the vertical job boards. Employers will always go
where the candidates are and candidates will go where the jobs are. My personal feeling is
that niche job boards are where the future lies. IT boards for IT companies and
professionals, HealthCare boards for Healthcare companies and professionals, and yes,
even Restaurant Job boards for restaurant professionals.

   4. Referrals are an important way to get hired, which bypasses job

We totally agree. I think this is why almost every big company has some sort of incentive
program to reward employees for bringing in referrals who are hired and stay for a
specified period of time. Companies (and employees) that use inventive ways of leveraging
networking technologies will see increased effectiveness in referral hiring.

   5. Just like what’s happened in travel and real estate, the
      widespread availability of information over the internet will
      eliminate the need for a specialized conduit of information like
      a recruiter. Candidates and hiring managers can connect

We totally disagree. In order for this to come true, one would have to assume that the
only value of a recruiter in recruiting candidates would be the initial introductions or that
all the other value propositions offered by recruiting specialists could be replaced through
online technologies. There are still plenty of Realtors, and there are still plenty of travel

agents. The industries may have been shaken up by how people use the internet, but they
are still thriving industries… as is recruiting 10 years after and as recruiting
will continue to be far into the future. Just as there are some percentage of home sales that
are done in the FSBO style, there is still great value in specialization and many customers
who are willing to pay for specialized help so the largest percentage of sales in the housing
market are done by professional realtors.

In conclusion, let me just say that my prediction is that recruiters won’t become extinct
and neither will Internet based job boards. Now, I may be a little biased because I am after
all a recruiter and have a very small job board myself – it’s just that I don’t plan on being extinct
any time soon.


Job boards have their place, but they don’t have everything that’s available. Directly contacting the
company is a great idea (IF you can get through), but tricky if you don’t know what job openings you’re
targeting. Networking is one of the most viable avenues to getting hired, but a recruiter should be part
of your network. A niche recruiter will have a specialized knowledge base you can’t afford to ignore.


What is a recruiter?

A recruiter is someone who recruits. That is, a recruiter is someone who finds or solicits
individuals to fill a place (like a job position) in a group such as a team or (in our case) a
company or corporation.

Types of recruiters

In the broadest sense, recruiters can be divided into two groups: internal recruiters, who
are employees of the company they fill jobs for; and external recruiters, who are
independent entities with multiple clients who fill jobs in a third-party broker relationship .

Types of external recruiters

Executive Search Firms -- Simply put, this is a recruiting firm that specializes in executive
personnel for any given industry.

Retained Search Firms -- Higher-end executive search firms receive a retainer, or up-front
fee, to perform a specific search for a high-level position such as a CEO, Vice President, or
other senior executive spot. These are almost always positions that pay upwards of
$100,000. Part of the overall search fee is paid up front with the remainder due upon a
successful hire. The firm keeps the initial retainer fee whether or not a candidate is

Contingency Recruiter – This kind of recruiter searches for employees on a contingency
basis, which means he or she is paid upon a successful hire/placement. The recruiter does
the initial recruiting, screening and interviewing and when those are successful, arranges
interviews with the candidates for the client/company. The company pays either a flat fee
or a percentage of the first year’s salary. (Jobs filled by a contingency recruiter usually pay
between $40,000-$200,000.) Traditionally, the jobseeker pays nothing.

Outplacement – An outplacement agency works directly with jobseekers, providing job
hunting assistance such as resume and interviewing help, career counseling, etc. Typically,
they work with downsized or otherwise displaced individuals. Employers often hire
outplacement companies to help their recently-downsized workforce find jobs.

Staffing Agency (Temp/Contract) – A Temporary Staffing Agency hires employees to fill a
temporary need for a client company. The client company pays a premium hourly rate to
the agency for the contract/temp employee, but the jobseeker is actually employed by the
staffing agency, who pays all wages, taxes, insurance and benefits to the employee. The
jobseeker traditionally pays nothing to be placed.

If a Retained Recruiter contacts you, you would know these things:

      The hiring company is very serious. They have already paid a significant sum to
       retain the services of this recruiter. There’s a very low chance that they will not fill
       the position.

      The hiring company is not considering any internal employees or they would not
       have retained a recruiter.

      The company has only secured the services of this particular firm. What does that
       mean? If you make it on the short list, you will be one of 5 or 6 qualified candidates
       that the recruiters will present to the client hiring company. These are nice odds.

      These jobs are almost never posted on job boards or elsewhere.

If a Contingency Recruiter contacts you, you would know these things:

      The client may still be considering internal candidates. (It is okay to ask the
       recruiter about this.)

      The client may still change their mind about filling the position. (It is okay to ask the
       recruiter about his or her depth of experience with the client.)

      The client may still be working with other contingency recruiters. (It is okay to ask
       if the recruiter has an exclusive client arrangement.)

      Sometimes these jobs will be posted on the recruiter’s website or other industry
       news areas. (This is just good info that you need to know as you work this channel
       of your job search.)

Your career matters. It’s where you spend the majority of your time, and it’s what
determines how much money you’ll make over your lifetime. So, making the most of your
opportunities to find the right job for you is critical. Traditionally, networking has always
been one of the best ways to get hired, as in, “it’s all in who you know.” It still works, and
it’s certainly more effective than simply sending your resume in mass quantities or
applying online (to anything). However, in this age of career mobility, someone in your
network that you always thought would be in a good position to help you might not be

As you look around at your options, you will see that using a recruiter for your job search is
the way to make the most of your opportunities. A good recruiter is a gold mine of
industry information, insider knowledge, and extensive contact lists—a network of
unbelievable proportions that you can leverage to your advantage.

The basics of the recruiting process:

    You submit your resume to the recruiter.

    The recruiter looks to see if there’s a job order that is a fit for you, or if there’s a
     company that could use your skills and experiences in their organization. Some of
     the best jobs are created for great candidates.

    If so, the recruiter calls you and describes the opportunity. If you agree, your
     information is submitted to the client company.

    The company puts you through its hiring process. The recruiter will be a great
     resource for your success, since she now has a vested interest in getting you hired.

    If the company hires you, they are billed by the recruiter. If not, you get the news
     that they are not moving forward. And then the recruiter keeps you in the database
     in case there’s another appropriate opportunity for you. Since the recruiter has
     gotten to know you, she will remember you every time she works with a firm that
     could use your specific talent. Recruiters often make introductions between
     companies and candidates before they even realize there is a need.

So why not apply directly to the company? It’s much riskier for you. When you apply
directly, your resume goes into a black hole. Very few companies mine their databases
when there are new openings. (If they do, your resume had better be incredible for you to
surface to the top.) You’re stuck waiting for them to call you. If you call them, you’ll likely
get a less-than-direct answer—at best.

On the other hand, a recruiter can call the company after they submit you, push for a
first interview, help you prepare for the interview (we know the company and what
they’re looking for), correct mistakes before you make them, and give you specific
feedback after the interview. Even though you’re not “the client,” a recruiter is going to
be an advocate for a successful placement. If the recruiter has taken a chance on you, he or
she is going to have a vested interest in your success. It becomes a major advantage for

Having said that, here’s a word of warning: if a recruiter finds out that you’ve already
applied directly to the company, he or she won’t deal with you on that. You will have shot
yourself in the foot on that one, because you’ve taken away the incentive for the recruiter
to work for your chance at that job (if the recruiter doesn’t place you from the beginning,
he or she won’t receive a fee). In other words, you can’t apply and then decide you need

It’s almost always going to be to your advantage to use a recruiter from the beginning in
your job search. You’ll have access to a bigger network, inside knowledge of job openings,
and an ally who can be your advocate with the company and give you feedback.

Jobseekers should consider working with both types of recruiters: the contingency
recruiter and the retained recruiter. Make yourself appealing to both by catering to what
each are looking for. If you have specialized skills or fall in the total compensation range of
100k or more, you will want to target both the contingency and retained recruiters. If you
are not as specialized or not as highly paid, you will want to focus on the contingency
recruiters. But try not to think of this as an “either/or” decision. It could be that you need
to work with both types.

How to find a good recruiter:

    Ask colleagues, friends and other professionals in your industry for the names
     and contact information of recruiters they have been contacted by or who they
     communicate with.

    Run a Google search using keyword-specific terms: industry, function, recruiter.

           Industry: What industry are you in? It could be medical, healthcare, financial,
           social media, sporting events, hospitality, chemical, automotive, etc.

           Function: What do you do? This might be sales, finance, marketing, logistics,
           information technology, security, etc.

           Recruiter: If using “recruiter” doesn’t get you results, try “executive search,”
           “search firm,” or even “headhunter.”

      (For example: searching “medical, sales, recruiter” will find PHC Consulting, Peggy
McKee’s medical sales recruiting firm.)

    Look on online social networks like LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. LinkedIn,
     especially, is a fantastic way to meet some of the influential recruiting members in
     your industry. You can use the search function (much like Google) or you can join
     relevant groups and look for the recruiters that are in those groups and start online
     conversations that sometime lead to a successful conclusion quicker than traditional

   Search recruiting communities like:

     You will see job postings on these websites, but remember not to just start looking
     at jobs and applying online. Look at the recruiters and develop a career database for

   Search Recruiter Directories:

     The Kennedy directory,, is one of the most well known
     directories, but there are others that could be useful.

How to make your approach:

   If you’ve found a recruiter through a personal contact, ask that person to write
    a note introducing you and then follow up with an email. If that is not possible,
    you could mention the name of the person who gave you the recruiter’s information
    when you contact them: “My friend/colleague/former sales manager knows you,
    Mr. Recruiter, and the types of positions you work with. He/She thought that it
    would be good for you and I to get to know each other.”

   Submit your resume online to the recruiter’s website. In an ideal scenario, the
    recruiter will read the resume, have your dream job available to fill, and place you in
    it. In a more likely scenario, the recruiter will place your resume in his or her
    Applicant Tracking System (ATS), and as positions come open, will do a search in
    which your resume will get flagged by the industry-specific keywords you so
    carefully put in it. The recruiter will then contact you for a get-to-know-you phone
    interview, and go from there.

   If you are using LinkedIn as an avenue for contact, you must have a great
    profile with an updated resume and a professional photo. LinkedIn is currently the
    most widely-used online site for business contacts, and it’s a great way to join
    groups, connect to people you have worked with in the past, and generally build
    your network. Your LinkedIn profile will be your online resume, so make it
    look good. It then becomes a real possibility for recruiter to contact you and say

       something like: “I saw on your LinkedIn profile that you are experienced in x, y and
       z. We need those types of skill sets…can we talk?”

When you send your resume, it must be as good as if you were sending it directly to the
hiring company. In other words, it has to be as outstanding as you can make it, and geared
toward the job you want. Always include a note in the text of the email, using direct,
powerful language to describe you and what you seek. Avoid long letters with paragraphs
that drone on. Consider using bullet points. (Don’t send in a resume that you expect the
recruiter to help you with. It’s not going to happen. Recruiters get stacks of resumes in
every day. If yours isn’t easy to read, error-free, 1-2 pages in length, and focused, it gets
tossed. )

If you are wondering why you aren’t getting calls from recruiters about jobs, it is because
they don’t know you. Put yourself out there and be seen by the recruiters. You do this by
attending conferences in your industry, writing articles for industry newsletters or blogs,
and by making online connections. Contact as many recruiters as you can. In this job
market you need to get yourself in front of a significant number of recruiters in order to get
the exposure that you need.

It’s fine to call or e-mail the recruiter every so often to check in, and it’s a must-do if you’ve
changed jobs, moved, or changed your phone number/e-mail address. (Don’t miss an
opportunity because the recruiter can’t find you—it happens more than you think.) But
don’t call every day, wondering where your job is. Making a nuisance of yourself will win
you no points. You won’t get lost in the system. Good recruiters keep an up-to-date
database of candidates they access regularly.

What to say to the recruiter:

You will almost never meet with a recruiter face-to-face. Recruiters usually only do
business via the phone or emails. This can sometimes be trickier for the jobseeker than
face-to-face meetings, so be ready. Know how to communicate with your recruiter for
maximum effectiveness.

    Never call a recruiter out of the blue. Make contact first by getting an
     introduction or sending your resume, so that there’s some kind of frame of
     reference for you. Then when you do call, keep it clean, crisp, and to the point.

    Be careful when leaving voicemails. They can be detrimental if not practiced and
     professional. A voicemail should be practiced beforehand and should be short and
     sweet while still planting all the information they need to know.

    If the recruiter calls you, be prepared. Have your resume and key points
     available. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Some great questions to ask:

              Do you have a client who could utilize my x, y ,and z skill sets?

              Do you anticipate having an open position that could use my experience or
              knowledge or contacts (or whatever else that makes you significant)?

              Can you give me any advice about next steps in my job search?

              If my experience isn’t a good fit for your clients, do you know someone who
              would find my experience attractive?

Appeal to the recruiter by selling yourself as the product. Recruiters like to hear how well
you prepare for interviews, how usually you get an offer, and so on – these type of phrases
make recruiters think you could land a job with our client (so we would get paid).

There’s a long enduring misconception on the part of the job seeker: that recruiters are in
business to get candidates jobs. THIS IS WRONG!

It used to be that candidates would pay employment services to help them find a job. That
was about the only way that it was done. It might cost as much as 2 months pay for a
candidate and it was payable upon acceptance of the job. Since then, the entire industry has
switched to an employer-fee-paid recruiting model. This means that job seekers no longer
pay employment services, it is the employer who pays the recruiting company. Fees are
usually some percentage of the annual salary of the individual being hired.

What does this mean for the job seeker? Well, it means that you are no longer the client…
you are now the product. The recruiter isn’t being paid by you, he is being paid by the
company. The recruiter doesn’t earn money for finding you a job, he earns money for
filling an open position with his client company. To some of you, this is a difference that
escapes understanding, and to others it may seem subtle. In truth, it is a huge difference…
one which drives the performance of a recruiter to do some things which are not in your
best interest.

“What?” you say. “Did you just say that recruiters do things that are not in my best interest?”
you ask. The answer is yes. Recruiters are trying to fill an open position and they will do
that with any candidate, not just you. This means that recruiters, especially good ones, will
continue to present candidates until the company makes a positive hiring decision. It boils
down to this: recruiters will continue to create competition for YOU, and they will bring
candidates who are trying to get the job that YOU want. So in effect, recruiters are working
against your best interest, at times, because they are creating competition for you. This
isn’t necessarily a bad thing, though.

There is a special relationship that is created between a recruiter and a candidate when
they are working together on an engagement. This relationship arises from the fact that
the job seeker is really “the product” which the recruiter is selling. If the recruiter’s client
‘buys’ the product, then the recruiter gets paid. Because any good salesman is going to put
his product in the best light, a recruiter will, or at least should, work really hard with his
candidate once they have identified a reasonable fit for a position that the recruiter is
working on. Putting ‘the product’ in the best light is the reason that recruiters provide all
kinds of free services to candidates that have real value: resume review, critique, and
rewriting; salary negotiation; relocation and demographic studies; interview preparation
and guidance are all provided at no charge, because the recruiter wants you to present as
well as you possibly can for the position that is open.

“So if recruiters do things that aren’t in my best interest, why should I work with them?” you
ask. Good question. Recruiters know the ins and outs of the hiring company, they know
the culture, they have feedback from interviews where the candidate failed and when other
candidates did well. They will use this information to help get you ready to knock ‘em dead

during your interviews. They will tell you what is going on inside the company to help you
better understand the culture and how the position fits into your long term career goals.
Recruiters want you to do well during the interview process, they want you to do well
enough to get an offer. They will do everything in the power to help make that happen.
This is a time when your mutual interests are perfectly aligned, so make sure to take
advantage of that fact. Listen to what the recruiter is telling you-- it is for both of your

So now you know: 1) job seekers are actually the product and 2) recruiters work to fill
open positions for client companies that will pay them upon candidate acceptance. This
doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t work with a recruiter… they can be quite helpful. They
can get you into companies where your direct application would be thwarted. They can
introduce you to companies where the job opening is not advertised or even publicized
within the company. In fact for some positions, working with a recruiter is the ONLY way
that you can garner an interview. Just remember that in working with a recruiter, you need
to keep in mind what is in your mutual best interest and concentrate on working from that
standpoint. Having a motivated recruiter working with [since they don't work for]
you, can be one of the best and fastest ways to get a job.


Recruiters aren’t in business to find you a job—they are in business to provide great
candidates for their client companies. YOUR mission is to be a candidate they will be
interested in presenting to their clients (aka, a desirable product). Then it’s a win-win for

Recruiters are entitled to have confidentiality and security of the information shared with
prospective candidates regarding the companies with whom the recruiter is working and
the positions which he is trying to fill. Any sharing of information with colleagues or co-
workers should only be done with express prior permission of the recruiter.

Candidates also have a right to an expectation of confidentiality and some of the
horrendous practices of (what I will loosely call) recruiting firms who run fax campaigns
that indiscriminately spam companies using a fax number database violates that. Some of
the danger to candidates should be obvious – the current employer may find out that they
are looking and take action to remove the employee from the company’s payroll. I just had
a candidate contact me because he was terminated for “looking” for a new job. But there
are other more subtle dangers, like cheapening your value in the industry because you
become a ‘freely available commodity.’ You also hurt your position in terms of working
with the top executive recruiters. Good recruiters will ask you where your resume has
been submitted, and if the list is long, they won’t want to spend much effort on your behalf.
If you lie about it, and they discover that when they submit to a hiring authority your
resume is already on file… well a few occurrences of that and they won’t work with you at

Confidentiality is just as important to the recruiter as it is to the candidate. Recruiters share
an awful lot of information with candidates regarding the positions that they are working
on, the hiring process, the individuals involved in the interview process, and how the
candidate can do well during the engagement. All of that information may have taken
months if not years to collect. It is information that puts the recruiter at a definite
advantage over his competitors in terms of providing candidates who are right for the job
and who actually get hired. Candidates getting hired is what results in a recruiter actually
getting a check and being able to feed his family. If a candidate shares the information with
other recruiters with whom he or she is working, well then those recruiters are being given
an unfair advantage, one for which they have not done any work, and that advantage may
well end up in the original recruiter losing a placement or multiple placements. In self-
defense, recruiters often don’t divulge all the details of a placement.

Recruiters leave out the details for competitive reasons. Recruiters who work on a
contingency basis work in a very competitive marketplace. They may not have an exclusive
with a client company, and there can be many reasons for this. But because of it, they have
to be smart about how they advertise their openings. Why? Well, that’s easy to answer:
other recruiters. You see, other recruiters out there who are industrious may be looking at

the same job boards as candidates, in order to find open positions that need filling. The
more information contained in a job posting, the easier it is to identify the client company.
With a phone and a few minutes’ time, a really good recruiter could come up with the same
assignment that it may have taken the person posting the ad months to secure.

So a ‘bad’ candidate can cause the same kind of damage as a badly worded job posting.
Working with recruiters should be based upon mutual respect and mutual benefit. If you
want to be treated well, have your information treated with confidentiality and as if it is
valuable, then you must treat the recruiter’s information the same. A recruiter may never
find out that you have shared information, but it is not the right thing to do. And if they do
find out, you can bet that it will have a negative impact on your working relationship.

Respect the confidential nature of the information you receive from a recruiter. Don’t
share the information the recruiter discusses with you. It’s not only the right thing to do, it
will be in the long-term best interests of your career.

It’s a good idea, as part of your career plan, to form long-lasting relationships with a select
number of recruiters who specialize in your field. Having identified them and introduced
yourself, you have the beginnings of a professional relationship that can pay handsome
dividends over your career.

One of the easiest ways to ruin that relationship is to not be serious and committed when
asking the recruiter to work with you. DO NOT use recruiters to investigate your value in
the marketplace to use as leverage for getting a raise. It would be fine to call one of the
recruiters you’re working with and ask “Hey Carl, what are the salary ranges you are seeing
for guys in my position?” I’ll give you that info right off the bat. But if you call me up and
say you are looking to move to a new company, then you have just asked me to invest time
in helping you find a new position.

All the work I do for you is absolutely free, no charge, zero cost… to you. I only make any
money in the deal when I am successful at guiding you through the interview process and
getting the company to make an offer that you and I have discussed and agreed will be
acceptable. That involves a ton of work. So I expect some commitment back from you.
When you tell me you want to leave your current company, it means you will take an offer
if we get to an acceptable comp plan. When you say that you will relocate, it means that
you are making a commitment that if a job is offered that requires relocation, you WILL
relocate. If you don’t follow through on those commitments then you will be damaging the
relationship, probably beyond all repair.

Don’t be “the boy who cried wolf.” Respect the recruiter’s time and effort. If you say you’re
interested in a placement, be sincere. Will you really move for this opportunity? Will you
really consider this compensation level? Are you really okay with this much travel? Keep
your word. Don’t back out of deals because you’ve changed your mind during the last stage
of the process. Your follow-through is important to your reputation, and to the recruiter’s.

The resume and all other documents presented to the recruiter should accurately depict
the experience, work history, and accomplishments of the candidate. All items should be
true representations of fact.

It is a pretty simple rule to follow and something that you as a candidate would expect from
your recruiter – be honest. When a recruiter gives you information about a position, you
want the information provided to be accurate and truthful so that you can make an
informed decision about whether or not the position is of interest to you, whether it fits
your career goals, and whether or not you are qualified based upon your skill set and

Likewise, a recruiter expects that the information that you present about yourself will be
accurate and truthful: the jobs and titles that you have held are real, your career
achievements are supportable, and your education is listed correctly and your diplomas
can be presented if asked for. These things are essential. If you misrepresent yourself
during the job search, you may get an interview, but you will certainly be caught at some
point. It’s career suicide.

If a recruiter discovers that you have lied about anything on your resume, you can kiss your
relationship with that recruiter goodbye… and with any of his network of close associates.
Oh yeah, recruiters talk, they tell stories, they share information. You put a recruiter’s
reputation (one of their most valuable assets) in jeopardy by lying to him or her. If they
don’t discover your dishonesty until after they present you to a hiring company, then they
will have egg on their face that may not be so easily washed off. Small lies count too.
Don’t do it. You will be discovered and when you are, the consequences can devastate your

If you present potential issues to the recruiter up front, he or she can probably work with
you. If you lie, even by omission, you WILL be discovered and it not only ensures that
recruiters in your industry won’t work with you again, it can devastate your entire career.

All interested candidates should work with a recruiter based upon their ability and
aptitude, and that consideration should be free from racism, sexism, and other forms of
prejudice and intolerance.

‘Consideration’ is a euphemistic term for discrimination, and I discuss it from a standpoint
of the difference between legal discrimination in hiring and illegal discrimination in hiring.
Legal ‘discrimination’ is the act of choosing the best candidate based upon their
backgrounds, judging one against the other. I assume that you all know what illegal
discrimination is.

So how does 'consideration' come into play in the other direction – in the relationship of
candidate toward recruiter, company and hiring authority?

Well it’s pretty simple, when you think about it. Recruiters and hiring authorities are
people too. They come from all walks of life, economic and social backgrounds, from
different countries, with different religious beliefs and different ethnic roots. They deserve
to be treated with respect regardless of how their backgrounds differ from that of the
candidate. If fact, this is a case where you can apply a very simple but old rule, the Golden
Rule – "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Treat recruiters, hiring
officials, and anyone from companies that you have contact with like you would want to be
treated. If you don’t, I can guarantee that you won’t get the job.

Understand that clients don’t always communicate with us openly and honestly. We may
not be able to control some of the variables. We will appreciate it if you are not a wild card.
Recruiters, just like anyone else, want to be treated fairly and with respect. Practicing the
Golden Rule makes your interactions with others positive experiences they will remember.
It’s to your advantage to have your recruiter think highly of you as a person, as well as a

Make your decisions to accept or reject offers on the basis of facts and parameters
discussed with the recruiter prior to receiving an offer. Don’t spring any eleventh-hour
“gotta haves” on the recruiter.

There will be some of you who will have no idea what I’m talking about in the sentence
above. But a recruiter’s stomach will turn remembering the candidate who managed to go
through every interview with flying colors and when it came to offer time, sprung the fact
that he wouldn’t move to the company’s headquarters and all along planned to use the offer
as a bargaining chip to get the company to allow him to commute cross-country.

Job seekers who enter into the process of obtaining a new position through the efforts of a
recruiter must be truthful about all aspects of what it would take for them to accept an

There is an onus on the recruiter to delve deeply into all aspects of what would make an
acceptable offer for the candidate. A great recruiter knows his candidate very well--what
motivates him or her to look, what the candidate dislikes about his or her current work
situation, what they do and don’t like, what they need more of and what they need less of.
A great recruiter will probe about any family situation, special needs for kids, whether or
not there is another wage earner to be considered. A great recruiter will understand what
kind of company culture the candidate is looking for, what his career goals are and what
the company must provide in terms of growth opportunities. A great recruiter has spent
quite a bit of time getting to know what it is that qualifies a company as a good fit for the
candidate. Yes, you heard me right, but for those not paying attention, I’ll repeat it –

"A great recruiter spends quite a bit of time getting to know what qualifies a company as
a good fit for the candidate."

And the recruiter does this up front. Why, you might ask? Well, it is simple. The recruiter
doesn’t want to waste time – not your time, and especially not his time. By digging deep in
the beginning to find out what it is the job seeker is looking for, the recruiter can stop the
process at any point when he sees the job seeker is not going to make a good candidate. It
will save him time and it will ultimately save time for the job seeker as he won’t be
introduced into situations with potential companies that wouldn’t turn out to be a good fit

So what is it that is required from the candidate? Simple. Be honest and consistent about
expressing what it is that you want in a next opportunity. Know what compensation is

acceptable, know what your geographic limitations are. Know the culture that is most
likely to fit your personality and make you feel comfortable. Understand what kind of
community you can live in and what kind you can’t. Understand the myriad of things that
will affect you and your family’s lives as you look to change career positions, and express
that to your recruiter. Here is a bonus for you: If he isn’t interested, it’s time to get a new
recruiter because this one is broken. Now if you don’t have a handle on all the particulars
involved in your job change, you owe it to yourself to find out what they are. You should do
some heavy exploration of what makes you tick as a professional before you spend your
own time and effort on seeking a new position. It will save you time and heartache. It will
also help keep your resume from looking like you were hired on at a temp agency and none
of the clients appreciated your work. If you spend the time to understand what you want, a
great recruiter can be a superior asset in helping you land the career position of your
dreams. But you must be consistent in what you ask him to pursue on your behalf.

What about the recruiters who don’t start digging up front? Well, my advice would be not
to work with them. Either they don’t understand how to do their job, or they don’t care
about what’s important to their candidates. Either way, they won’t be of much value to you
as a job seeker.

Be as clear as possible with the recruiter about your preferences and requirements, as well
as what you want to achieve right up front. A recruiter who knows where you want to go
is much more equipped to help you get there.

Recruiters are entitled to consistent communications regarding the status of their
candidate, regardless of the how busy the candidate might be. Recruiters make their living
by being available for phone calls. They are always available or have a system of
notification such as pagers, forwarded telephones, or voice mail. There is no acceptable
excuse for not calling your recruiter back, other than death – either yours or his.

I guarantee that the most often leveled complaint about recruiters is that they don’t
follow up, they don’t return phone calls to jobseekers when the jobseeker is trying to find
out if they have received their information, if the interview went well, if they are moving on
to the next step,..etc….etc…etc. And that is completely and totally understandable. In
today’s age of instant communications, there is no excuse for not getting back to a
jobseeker when you have new information. It is easy to return a phone call or type a quick
email response. When I am initially establishing a working relationship with a jobseeker, I
let them know up front that I deal with so many candidates and clients that it is NOT a good
use of my time to call and tell them I haven’t gotten any new information for them. I invite
them to get in touch as often as they like, and promise to return their calls, but calling with
nothing new helps neither one of us. Since as recruiters we don’t control the hiring process
of our third-party client companies (oh how I wish that we could) we also can’t control
their timelines and feedback loops. The best that we can do is to establish the
communication rules with the jobseeker and get information to him or her as soon as we
have it. Some recruiters don’t follow up because they don’t like to say "NO" but, that shouldn’t be a
problem for a really great recruiter – honest communications are the cornerstone of
building a strong, long-lasting relationship.

Follow-up on the part of the jobseeker, now that’s an entirely different story. There is no
excuse for not returning the phone calls, emails, or other communications attempts
that are made by your recruiter (except for the aforementioned fatalities). This is
especially true if you have progressed from the presentation stage [where the recruiter has
merely presented your professional credentials to a company] to the interviewing stage,
where you are interfacing with actual personnel from the recruiter’s client company. I
have touched on the fact that sometimes jobseekers, even great ones, stop returning calls and
what a vexing problem it creates for recruiters. Sure, we are all big boys and we can move
on with our lives, find a new candidate, get the position filled, but it does set back our
reputation a bit with clients when the superstar we were representing a few days ago
suddenly won’t return our phone calls so that we may present an offer from our client. If
you think that not returning calls for any reason is acceptable, think again. Recruiters have
long memories, and their software can help remind them of jobseekers who don’t

cooperate or who just plain screwed them over. If you think that it won’t matter, you are
wrong. Plus, recruiters talk, and your bad actions can get around very quickly.

Follow up is one of the keys to keeping relationships strong. Believe me, it is vitally
important that you follow up with your recruiter. It will keep both of you happy working
with one another throughout your career.

Call your recruiter as soon as you can when we call you….it will be appreciated, and
remembered. Call your recruiter if the hiring manager called or sent you an email…so that
the recruiter can follow up for feedback. Call your recruiter back, even if your answer is
“I’m not interested”…someday you might be.

Jobseekers should make sure they read all the information the recruiter sends them.

It might seem silly to have to tell someone, but you know there are many, many times when
jobseekers don’t review the information that their recruiter sends them. And it is not only
to the detriment of the jobseeker, but also the recruiter. You see, recruiters have been in
the business of helping prepare candidates for interviews for a long time. Their very
livelihood depends upon them being able to do a good job of it. Why in the world would
someone not want to avail themselves of the knowledge that the recruiter has built up over

    Recruiters have probably prepared more people for interviews in a single
     quarter than you will have interviews in your entire career. Who do you think
     would be better at it, the recruiter or you?

    Recruiters have special knowledge about the client that you can’t possibly
     hope to have. Why is it that you are using the recruiter for your introduction into
     the hiring process anyway? If you knew more than the recruiter, you’d already have
     an interview set up without him/her.

    Recruiters have feedback about the other candidates that have interviewed
     before you. No company will EVER tell you about the candidates that you are
     competing with and the strengths and weaknesses that each has. A recruiter can
     give you all that information, and will, to help you get the job.

    Recruiters want to get paid. They know that their best chance to get paid is to
     make a great match and prepare YOU to make the very best possible impression that
     you can.

Listen to the recruiter. He or she only wants to give you every possible advantage so that
you will get an offer. All you have to do is use the information that they provide you.
Interview guides, resume templates, rundowns of interviewing agendas, backgrounds on
hiring managers, company history, insider scoop… all of this is great information that you
likely can’t get on your own. All you need to do is take advantage of it and do some
studying. If your recruiter doesn’t have the kind of information that I’m talking about, then
you are probably with the wrong recruiter. If you don’t take advantage of what the
recruiter gives you, then the recruiter will soon figure out that he has the wrong candidate,

and if he does, you can bet that your working relationship will suffer drastically, if not be

Have your resume, key points, and questions ready when you talk to your recruiter so that
your conversations are professional, productive, and efficient. Take in and incorporate all
the information, feedback, or critiques your recruiter gives you. The recruiter is the
specialist here. Take advantage of it.

Schedule interviews so that they are respectful of the hiring manager’s time and efforts, as
well as the needs of the company and the formalized hiring process. This is a very simple
concept, but one that if overlooked can create headaches for hiring companies and
heartaches for the recruiter and the candidate. "How so?" you may ask.

Let’s talk about the headaches. Nowadays there are quite a few companies who realize that
human capital should be thought of as a long-term investment and they treat it as such.
An element of that treatment is how they handle the selection process. From a candidate’s
perspective, it may seem a long and drawn out experience, with hoops and hurdles to jump
through and over. But to the company, it is the start of the investment in a candidate who
has the potential to become an associate. And like any other good business that values its
investments, they are quite deliberate with investing in potential team members. That can
mean several things, but it is very likely that the selection process will include several
rounds of interviews and meetings between the potential employee and more than a few of
the company’s executives. In order for the company to meet its hiring goals and move the
hiring process along as efficiently as possible, their HR folks try to schedule interviews and
meetings for multiple executives and multiple candidates in a single day. These are
sometimes mutually exclusive goals, but the HR staffers try very hard to be
accommodating to everyone concerned. It costs companies a tremendous amount of
money in travel expenses and lost productivity to arrange these kinds of interview sessions
because not only do multiple candidates have to travel to a central site (probably company
headquarters) but also often times multiple field-assigned executives must travel as well.

Now, throw into the mix a candidate that is uncooperative or arrogant; one who thinks
that the potential employer OWES him or her some sort of special treatment. The
candidate may want to feel wooed like a franchise player. And in fact, the company may
well have those feelings about that particular candidate. However, practicality, efficiency,
hiring goals, company goals, and executives’ schedules may demand that the process begin
and end within a certain time period and that multiple candidates be interviewed on a
specific day. Sometimes the company just can’t bend – when that happens, the candidate
must or…. you get heartaches.

OK, so let’s talk about the heartaches-- the bad things that can happen to the candidate and
the recruiter when the candidate can not be flexible enough to meet the schedule laid out
by the HR staff. It can be caused by any one of several things, but the end result is that the
candidate is dropped from consideration. That can happen because the company feels
"put off" by the candidate and they lose their luster. It could be that another candidate is

"good enough" and even though the company would rather have had the reluctant
candidate, they took the best available talent so that they could meet their business goals.
The heartache for the candidate is that they lose their opportunity for employment with
that company, which could have been their dream job. They may even extend their period
of unemployment or their job search by months. The heartache for the recruiter is that
they may well have lost a fat commission. The recalcitrant candidate may well have been in
the lead for the job, and when unwilling to interview as needed, could be replaced by
someone that the recruiter did not represent. Recruiters don’t like to lose out on deals
when they are near the end of an engagement.

Understand that the recruiter has a job, too—with all the time constraints, deadlines, and
hassles that go with it. Be flexible, available, easy to work with, and respect the time and
efforts of the recruiter and the hiring company. It will go a long way toward making the
recruiter want to work with you for the long haul.

Communications seems like an easy topic, but sometimes the simplest things on the surface
are actually pretty complicated. Open and frank conversations are essential to building
trust in the relationship between jobseeker and recruiter. One of the keys to building a
long-term relationship is the sharing of information between the recruiter and the job
seeker. If that candidate isn’t forthcoming with information and doesn’t make him feel
comfortable, recruiters won’t work with him.

By getting that understanding up front, I find that I don’t get burned very often.

You see, trust is a two way street and if you don’t inspire it with your recruiter, then you
can’t expect him to want to work with you. If you called a recruiter and during your
conversation you got the feeling that he wasn’t being truthful about the job he was working
on, the company that was his client, what your chances as a candidate were, you wouldn’t
feel very confident that you were working with the right individual would you? Well the
same holds true with a recruiter and how he judges your veracity and how worthwhile
working with you would be. A very coy person may be judged to be disingenuous and
not worthy of the recruiter’s time investment.

During any engagement where a jobseeker (who at that point has turned into a candidate)
and recruiter are interviewing with a company, there must be open communications about
what other opportunities the candidate is working on. Oh, you may hear advice that you
shouldn’t tell your recruiter and that it isn’t any of his business…. Well, that’s bunk. No
recruiter can help you extract the best deal without knowing all the parameters involved.
No recruiter will appreciate being blindsided at the eleventh hour when you tell him that
you have another offer from a different company. You won’t be that recruiter’s favorite
person (putting it mildly) and recruiters have friends, lots of them. You could wind up
being personae non gratae with a lot of recruiting firms. My best advice is to find a
recruiter who is worth trusting, and then just do that… trust the recruiter to work with you.
Most great recruiters are in it for the long haul--they want to build relationships that
last. They realize that every candidate will one day be a hiring authority. Build trust by
communicating everything honestly. It’s not just about communication—it’s about open
and honest communication.


Your recruiter is not your enemy—he or she is your ally. You have nothing to lose by being
open and honest with your recruiter, but potentially, a lot to gain.

Candidates must provide recruiters with the necessary and truthful information about his
or her work history, compensation, performance, felony record, drug use, and other legal
hiring criteria etc. in order for the recruiter make an informed decision about the
candidate’s suitability for a position.

This one principle should be the guiding rule when dealing with recruiters. You need
to tell them about your career and share information, which is factual. Leaving out
information, or not being truthful can cause you to lose all hope of gaining the position that
you are discussing with the recruiter. On more than a few occasions, I’ve had candidates
leave out/falsify information that, if disclosed truthfully in the beginning, could have been
worked around. Not being truthful about potentially damaging circumstances in your
past can and will break the bonds of trust with your recruiter. It will more than likely
keep the recruiter from working with you in the future. It reveals flaws in your character
that are still present, rather than mistakes in the past that you have learned from. It has
been my experience that many companies will look at past problems as just that: past.
However, if a candidate isn’t forthright, they won’t consider that person for employment. If
you are candid with your recruiter, he can help guide how you reveal the information to the
hiring company. His guidance can help minimize the detrimental effects. The recruiter
can keep your candidacy moving forward with the decision-makers while HR works on
what issues may arise from past problems. The timing of when to tell, and whom to tell can
be critical, and your recruiter, because of his working relationship with the company, is in
the best position to determine those steps.

When you reveal derogatory information about your past, you may not always get the
best reaction, or the reaction that you wanted from your recruiter or from the hiring
company, but you will gain the respect of the recruiter. You won’t lose him as an ally in
your job search. If he comes across opportunities where your past isn’t disqualifying, then
he’ll work with you and present you to the hiring company.

There is other information that must be provided that isn’t as troubling as possible criminal
charges, but it is just as important that it be provided in a truthful manner. Information
about job titles, salary levels, etc. has to be conveyed truthfully. Don’t think that you can
squeeze a higher offer out of a new company by overstating your earnings. It won’t
happen. Your prospective new employer can and will find out your true earnings history
and if you have been dishonest about your salary history, you might just lose your offer.

If you choose to try deceive him and the hiring company, the chances are almost 100% that
you will be found out and the reaction from the recruiter and hiring company will be to
stop working with you and avoid interaction at any level. Being truthful is always the
best policy… especially with your recruiter.

This is the information age. You can run, but you can’t hide. Don’t shoot yourself in the
foot by trying to conceal issues or facts.

 1. How can a recruiter help me?

    A recruiter is going to be a valuable resource in your job search. No job board is
    going to have every available job—many managers prefer to work directly with
    recruiters because it makes their jobs easier. A recruiter is going to have his or her
    ear to the ground all the time because that’s the job. A recruiter’s knowledge of the
    industry, inside information, and extensive network will all work to your advantage
    in your job search.

 2. How much does it cost?

    Using a recruiter to find a job costs you nothing. Client companies pay when a
    placement is made. That means, however, that you’re not hiring the recruiter and
    he’s not working for you—you’re the product in this transaction.

 3. Why can’t I apply directly to the company?

    Your chance of getting lost in the shuffle is much greater if you apply on your own—
    there are usually many, many applications for a position. On the other hand,
    companies who have relationships with a particular recruiter will naturally pay
    more attention to a candidate who is presented by them. One more thing: No
    recruiter is going to work with you if you’ve already submitted your application to
    the company for a position. It’s a matter of money. If the company were to hire you,
    their position would be that the recruiter didn’t find you; they did because you
    applied directly. And they’d be right.

 4. It doesn’t really matter which recruiter I use, does it?

    The truth is that it matters a lot. Some recruiters have vast amounts of industry
    knowledge and contacts. Others do not. Find and listen to those recruiters who
    have been successful over a period of time. All recruiter advice is NOT the same.

 5. A recruiter gets paid for sending resumes to the company, so won’t I get lost in
    the shuffle?

   If recruiters got paid for presenting resumes, they’d all be rich. Recruiters only get
   paid for making the match between a hiring manager and a candidate that results in
   an offer and acceptance of a job. It’s true that recruiters present more than one
   candidate, but they never shower the company with resumes. That would be
   counter-productive. The recruiter’s job is to make life easier, more efficient, and
   more financially productive for their clients. Overwhelming them with candidates
   won’t do that. A great recruiter will present the client with only a few candidates
   who are a fantastic fit.

6. Don’t recruiters post job ads that aren’t really available so that they can build
   up their resume database?

   When you see a vague ad, don’t think for a second that there isn’t a real job
   associated with it. It’s more than likely that it’s worded that way because of a
   contingent, non-exclusive arrangement that the recruiter has with a client. It makes
   no sense for a recruiter to post a job that is not real.

7. Will the recruiter help me figure out a career path and create a resume?

   No. The person to do that would be a career coach. A recruiter is only interested in
   a candidate who fits a job order that they have at that time, or anticipate they could
   have in the near future.

8. Other than sending in my resume, how does a recruiter help me?

   First of all, a recruiter will send in your resume to job opportunities you have a good
   chance of getting—so your odds are good from the start. Once a company shows
   interest in you, the game changes. Remember, a recruiter gets paid if the company
   hires you—so the recruiter now has a vested interest in your success and becomes
   an advocate for you with the company and a resource/knowledge base for you in
   your interview. So in other words, a recruiter helps a lot.

  Be a great candidate. Show up with a solid resume, a good attitude, and the proper
   preparation for the job you want (training, education, and experience, or even job-

  Don’t come to a recruiter for help if you’ve applied to a company and heard
   nothing. If you’ve already put your name in for a position, a recruiter can’t place
   you in it or be any kind of an advocate for you.

  Don’t take it personally. For instance, if a recruiter picks your resume apart, she’s
   not picking on you. Take all input from the recruiter and do your best to
   incorporate it. Recruiters know how to sell their candidates, so let them help you
   put your best foot forward (the one that’s going to get you in the door).

  Make sure your recruiter has all your contact information—current address,
   phone number, and email. If there’s any change, contact the recruiter to let him or
   her know. More than one job opportunity has been lost because the recruiter
   couldn’t reach the candidate.

  Be open and honest with your recruiter about job history, experience,
   preferences, and issues. He will appreciate it, and be more likely to advocate for
   you as a candidate he can trust. In addition, he will likely give you valuable input on
   how to handle difficult situations or decisions.

  Be a good source of information for your recruiter. Pass on industry
   information, tips, and contacts. Refer candidates to him. He won’t forget it. A
   positive relationship with your recruiter will guarantee that you’re remembered
   when it’s time to fill new job opportunities.

  Be loyal. Don’t ever go to the recruiter’s client directly (not only will the recruiter
   never contact you again, companies don’t like it either). If you are contacted by
   another recruiter for the same position, tell them that you are already in discussions
   about this job—but it’s perfectly acceptable to ask if they have any other job orders
   that could be a fit for you.

  Ask for referrals to other recruiters. It’s allowed. If you aren’t perfect for the
   type of jobs one recruiter has, he or she may know someone that you should contact.
   Recruiters speak with other recruiters all the time.

  Remember, the recruiter is your advocate, not your counselor. Don’t ask your
   recruiter if you’ll be good at a particular job, or otherwise project uncertainty. If

   you’re not confident, the recruiter won’t be confident, so the hiring manager won’t
   be confident…which means that you won’t get presented for the job.

 Recruiters are a fantastic way to get a job. The groundwork that you lay in this
  search will pay you for the rest of your career. Put these key contacts in some type
  of database and email them at least 2 times per year with an update on you (and
  your skills, experiences and other work information). There is nothing more
  satisfying and confidence inspiring than to develop contacts who call you about the
  most interesting and exciting positions within your industry.

Applicant Tracking System (ATS) – software database used by recruiters and Human
Resource Departments to store and retrieve jobseeker resumes by specific keywords

Candidate – the jobseeker

Client company – who the recruiter works for when finding a candidate to place in a job

Contingency Recruiter –searches for employees on a contingency basis, which means he or she is paid
either a flat fee or a percentage of the candidate’s first year salary only when the candidate is hired (also
called “third-party” recruiters)

Employment Services – a now-defunct model of job searching in which the jobseeker paid a fee to the
agency in exchange for finding a position for him

Executive Search Firms -- a recruiting firm that specializes in executive personnel for any
given industry

External recruiters -- independent entities with multiple clients who fill jobs in a third-
party broker relationship

Internal recruiters -- employees of the company they fill jobs for

Job boards – typically found online, these are mass postings of jobs available at various

LinkedIn – hugely popular social media site designed for business networking

Outplacement – often hired by employers for recently-downsized workers, outplacement
agencies work directly with jobseekers to provide job hunting assistance such as resume
and interviewing help, career counseling, etc.

Recruiter -- a recruiter is someone who finds or solicits individuals to fill a place (like a job
position) in a group such as a team or (in our case) a company or corporation

Retained Search Firms -- receive a non-refundable retainer, or up-front fee, to perform a
specific search for a high-level position such as a CEO, Vice President, or other senior
executive spot, with the remainder due upon a successful hire

Staffing Agency (Temp/Contract) – hires employees to fill a temporary need for a client company. The
client company pays a premium hourly rate to the agency for the contract/temp employee, but the
jobseeker is actually employed by the staffing agency, who pays all wages, taxes, insurance and benefits
to the employee.

RESOURCES – advice, products, and tools to help candidates get the job – corporate website for national medical sales recruiting firm - hundreds of articles on interviews, resumes,
30/60/90-day plans, and more, as well as information specifically relating to the medical
sales industry - videos created to assist jobseekers with every
aspect of the hiring process

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Carl Chapman founded CEC Search LLC in July 2005. Carl has 20+ years of food
service/restaurant industry and related experience. Most of his career has been spent in
restaurant operations and the pursuit of operational improvement. Having served in front
line management positions, multi-unit supervision, as well as franchise development and
operations, Carl has a deep understanding of the need for committed, talented, and
motivated team members. Carl founded two companies that provided restaurants with
vertical market software solutions, IT consulting services, and financial interface
programming from store-based POS systems to corporate accounting systems. His most
recent position was as Vice President of the Food Service Division with a top 25 ranked
office in the Management Recruiters International franchise network. Carl was recruited
by the owner of The Dunwoody Group, LLC. to aggressively launch the office into Food
Service/Restaurant management recruiting. Prior to that he served as Vice President of
Product Development and Operations at UTA Business Systems where he led the company
to be a predominant provider to the delivery industry. Routinely talking with senior level
executives (including chairpersons of Fortune 500 companies) about how to utilize
technology to achieve higher profit margins has helped keep him abreast of the latest
trends. Carl is a graduate of the United States Naval Academy with BS in general

Peggy McKee loves horses, Texas, and closing the sale. She grew up on a 1000-acre ranch
in central Oklahoma, where she developed her love of ranch work and all things horse:
trail riding, helping with cattle, and cutting (but she’s still working on her pole-bending
skills). Her competitiveness (and her 6-foot height) made her a standout player for her
high school basketball team, with a 29.9 game point average her senior year (867 points in
the season). She earned her B.S. in Chemistry and her M.B.A. in Marketing from the
University of Oklahoma, turned down an offer to teach nuclear chemistry to Navy
submariners because of the uniforms and 6:30 am start time did not work for her, and
entered the medical sales field where she’s found great success. She discovered her love of
Texas while living there for a brief stint in 1994. Although she had to move to other states
for a while in order to follow her career, she got back to Texas as quickly as she could and
will never leave.

Peggy founded PHC Consulting in 1999 (in Texas) to be the kind of recruiter she wishes she
could have worked with when she was a hiring manager. Because of Peggy’s experience in
laboratory sales and management, she believes that the way to make a hiring manager’s life
easier is to provide him or her with a select few pre-screened, pre-qualified, top-quality,
enthusiastic candidates to choose from so that the hiring process is NOT yet another stress-
filled aspect of the busy medical sales manager’s job.

Peggy is focused on making the hiring process simple, pleasant, efficient, and successful.
She does that by studying her clients’ needs, applying her own comprehensive personal and
professional knowledge of what it takes to be successful in medical sales, and hand-picking
the highest-quality candidates to present. Her attention to detail and dedication to great
service have earned her an outstanding reputation as a medical sales recruiter for over 10


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