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How To Nail Your First Meeting with a Recruiter

Interview

Recruiters can be a handy tool in helping you navigate the wonderful wide world of job opportunities. It is, after all, their job to know the market; what’s trending, where are the gaps, where’s the exponential growth, and what areas are stagnating. Finding you a role earns them commission so they should be in your corner from the get go. They can’t, however, do all the work – you need to bring the goods. Here are a few key tips to get that recruiter working for you!

Review your resume

Your CV should be neat and concise. Simply list key talking points of only the most interesting and relevant duties you undertook in previous roles. Highlight words that will resonate with the reader. Be succinct and clear in your descriptions. Over worded resumes are hard to read for time poor executives so make your point and move onto the next one. Make sure the timeline of your experience is easy to follow and spell-check it twice!

Know your resume

Sounds obvious right? The bullet points you list off in your resume should work as precursors to detailed accounts of events or tasks that you accomplished in your previous roles. Being able to recount these in a confident and articulate manner is paramount. Know your resume inside out. Do not leave room for ambiguity or misinterpretation.

Be professional

Dress well, show up on time, be mindful of your non-verbal behavior. Recruiters will be reading into your body language from the moment you step through their door; how you address them, your eye contact, your fidgeting, your predisposition to look away whilst talking instead of trying to engage them. A recruiter needs to be able to find assurance in you before they can hand you over to their clients so give them every reason to feel confident. Are you personable? Easy to talk to? Relatable? Proficient? This is pretty much a trial run for a real deal interview so make the most of the opportunity to hone your interview skills.

Honesty

It’s important to be clear about your current circumstance. Do you have work commitments that need attending while you are looking for another role? Are you time poor because of this? Are you applying for roles independently or have you signed up with other recruiters? Most recruiters are extremely accommodating when it comes to personal circumstance but it’s only fair for them to have the whole picture in order to work effectively.

Social media screening

Make sure that your social media sites are not wholly belittling or grossly outrageous. A quick internet search can unravel a professional reputation fairly quickly so do a quick sweep of your sites prior to introducing yourself. Make sure that your LinkedIn profile reflects most of what appears on your resume from a consistency and timeline perspective. Present yourself as professionally as possible. Hit up old colleagues for endorsements or recommendations. Recruiters like to see activity on profiles, it indicates a willingness to improve and progress.

Show initiative

Don’t expect the recruiter to have all the answers when it comes to your career. You need to show some drive, some direction, some get-up-and-go. Know what you want from your career and don’t be afraid to express it. Have a rough five-year plan mapped out. Your ‘best case scenario’ laid out front and centre. The more intel the recruiter gets from you, the more they can tailor their search on your behalf. Do they need to widen the net and accept more varied opportunities or do they need to be more select? Let them know if you’re open to travel, relocation, part-time or contractual work. Things will come across their desk and if you’re marginally suitable it might add up to an interview.

Follow up

Recruiters tend to juggle a number of candidates at any one time. It can tend to be quite a fast paced environment with rapid turn over. Don’t allow your resume to slip to the bottom of the pile, you need to stay at the top of their to-do list. After your meeting follow up with a phone call to say thanks for making the time to meet. Assure them that you will make yourself available for any upcoming interviews they might want to put you forward for and keep a close eye on their website for new listings. If there is a position of interest, call them up and ask about it. Don’t become the caller they start to ignore, be proactive in your approach and be nice. Remember they are recruiters not magicians!

Team Vanna

Vanna's expert writing team

5 min read

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