Knowing how to stay on a recruiter's radar can move you to the front of the job-search pack.
Connecting with a qualified recruiter can definitely benefit your job search. However, very good recruiters are usually very busy recruiters, with a large pool of candidates requesting their help and a long list of hiring managers demanding their services.
As a result, building a relationship from day one is invaluable when staying on recruiters' minds. Holding a recruiter's attention means they're more likely to reach out to you before other candidates about job possibilities — and that can make all the difference.
Here are some standard — and some more unconventional — ways to stay on a recruiter's radar without overdoing it.
Have the right keywords on your resume
Finding a qualified candidate often begins with searching a resume database using specific keywords or keyword phrases associated with a role. As long as your resume has the appropriate keywords, you'll show up in the search results every time, leading the recruiter to sit up and take notice.
Share information or news
Share important or interesting information you discover about a company's business market and the industry in general, including statistics, a new study, or a trade journal article. If they already know about it, you'll still come across as interested in their success even when you aren't working there — yet.
Based on prior conversations with the recruiter, you can also share non-work-related material you know the person might enjoy. This can be anything from a unique cooking gadget you found online to suggesting a great place for pet supplies. Whatever you share, always do so in a professional manner.
Finally, you can reach out to let the recruiter know of any changes in your professional status, from completing a course, training a new skill, or receiving a certification.
Offer relevant ideas
To start, follow the company's social media sites, checking their website regularly for updates so you can share ideas or data the company would find relevant.
Amanda Augustine, TopResume's career expert, recently recommended some specific ways to do this.
“Share an idea that could help the department cut costs, increase their output, or meet another goal you've learned. This gesture could easily get you back on the recruiter's radar and into the interview room for additional discussion,” she says.
Augustine notes that this also shows how serious you are about getting a position, that you understand its function within the organization, and that you see yourself as a strong fit for the role you want.
Send qualified candidates
As a former recruiter, I can attest that finding strongly qualified candidates is one of the more difficult parts of the job. So, referring someone to your recruiter will definitely get their attention. Do this even when there's not a current opening specifically for you, and you'll build lots of good will.
You'll not only appear as a selfless collaborator, but a valuable hiring resource. It's also likely that the recruiter will contact you to say thanks, giving you another opportunity to touch base.
Just be sure that the candidates you send are well-qualified for the role, otherwise this gesture will not create the results you would hope for.
This is probably the most unobtrusive way of staying on a recruiter's radar while also getting the benefit of their knowledge and experience.
It's perfectly acceptable to tell a recruiter you've been looking over your resume; don't be afraid to ask about reworking certain areas of your resume or strategies for an upcoming interview. Getting you hired benefits the recruiter as much as it benefits you, and helping you is part of the service they offer.
Reach out about new openings you see
Check the company's hiring site regularly for new job postings. When you find a position that you feel qualified for, but haven't yet heard about from the company, reach out to the recruiter.
If you are a good fit for the role, the recruiter will appreciate your message making it known so the position can be filled. If you're not quite right for the job, you've still connected and perhaps have gotten the recruiter to look at you in a fresh light.
You could also extend goodwill by providing a name of someone you know who might be qualified, as mentioned above.
Write a thank-you note
This is always a good strategy for standing out from the crowd. However, to really make yourself memorable send a handwritten note, rather than an email or e-card, when you follow-up after an interaction.
Because a handwritten thank-you takes a bit more effort, it shows that you're genuinely excited about both the company and the role you could play there.
Be professional and positive
When a recruiter thinks of you, it's best if they remember that you're someone they like to connect with. You want them to see you as professional, considerate, enthusiastic, and collaborative so that they call you first to discuss a job opening and that they have confidence sending you in for an interview. Excellent interpersonal skills will keep you popping up again and again in a recruiter's memory.
While it does take some effort to stay on a recruiter's radar, eventually landing the job you want will be well worth it.
One way to grab recruiters' attention? An impressive resume. Our resume writers can help.