Not all recruiters are created equal - Know how to evaluate one

If you’ve been in the workforce for at least a couple of years, it’s more than likely that you already have a horror story about a shady recruiter or recruiting company that drove you crazy.  Unfortunately, you also know the benefits of having a really great recruiter but may not know how to find one.  This is to help you understand a little more about the who and how-to of finding and working with a really great recruiter and never have to experience the negative side of unethical recruiters again.

How to evaluate your recruiter:

  1. Be open minded. It’s unfortunate to admit that our industry has many recruiters that forget that our industry involves people. You’re not a product and shouldn’t be treated that way.  You’re not the same as your peers and not all recruiters are the same.  Just like any new relationship, you have go in with an open mind that they could be an amazing person.
  2. Are they honest? The most important trait in any relationship..  If they’re lying about one thing, you can be sure there are going to be more to follow—kick them to the curb immediately.
  3. Are they win-win? Most bad recruiting experiences occur when a recruiter thinks win-IDONTCARE instead of win-win  They’re there to fill a job with a skillset and could care less about your goals, desires, or family.
  4. How long have they been in the industry? A recruiter who has been in the industry for less than a year may have a lot of obstacles occur that more experienced recruiters would have been able to predict.  Be patient with recruiters that are trying their best to help as you can be certain that they’re getting help behind the scenes.

Things you can do :

  1. Be Honest. Remember that this is a two way street and recruiters’ jobs are to evaluate people—experienced recruiters can sniff out the tiniest lies and may quickly rule you out for amazing opportunities.  I’ve heard many reasons why people will lie and I always say the same thing: “Is that really how you want to start off a relationship with your next potential employer?  Is that the person you want to be?”
  2. Thoroughly explain your goals and objectives.  Work with your recruiter on a strategy to try and obtain what you want.  Experienced recruiters have more experience than you likely ever will in your career.  Let them help.
  3. Don’t get desperate.  If you’re desperate for a job, a bad recruiter is not going to help.  Instead of wasting time interviewing at positions that you’re interested in, be proactive to seek out a recruiter that you want to work with.
  4. Be proactive.  Have at least one good recruiter in your network.  They can keep you aware of opportunities in the marketplace, even if you’re not actively looking.  It’s not likely that the perfect opportunity for you comes up when you happen to be in the market.