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Best Practices for Job Searching with a Recruiter

March 2017 - By Erica Woods, Manager of Contractor and Community Relations and Sarahbeth Jones, Apex Content & Communications Specialist

Searching for a job is overwhelming. Finding a new opportunity is time-consuming, exhausting, and confusing with the introduction of Applicant Tracking Systems and various recruiting tools. Using a recruiter to assist you in your job search can help make the process easier and more efficient. At Apex Systems, we have skill-specific recruiters nationwide dedicated to helping connect you to a local opportunity.

To help you get started, we’ve compiled a few best practices for working with a recruiter during your job search.

1. Highlight Career Goals/Motivators/Preferences
Be as clear with your career motivators as possible. Share the types of roles you want, technologies you want to work with, any preference on industry or company, type of culture and environment, and any insights on your long-term goals.

2. Establish Open Lines of Communication and Preferences
Set the precedent on how and when you like to conduct your job search and any preferences on communication times and methods. Share your schedule proactively, letting recruiters know the best time to call or email to provide updates and line up interviews.

3. Make an Effort to Meet In-Person
Make an effort to meet your recruiter in person to further build your relationship and give them an idea of you as a person so they can help match you with a great fit.

4. Be Organized
Have a tracking mechanism for staying organized with all the recruiters, companies, and jobs you’re applying for. It could be as simple as an Excel document to capture the following information: Job Title, Company, Recruiter, Locations, and Concerns. Many job seekers also have an additional column that includes feedback on the company, interest level in position, post interview notes, follow-up protocol, etc.

5. Explain Job Search and Interview Success Criteria
Ask for the resources you need to be successful throughout the job search, application, interview, and offer process. We have developed many resources to help give you the knowledge and best practices you need to navigate the process, so proactively share the areas you think you could fine tune!

6. Highlight Your Qualifications
Explain the top reasons why you are qualified for a position and submit any references, online profile links, or other aspects that could contribute to your credibility for that particular role.

7. Weekly Follow Up on Positions
Don’t be shy about following up with recruiters on positions you are submitted for. It might take a couple weeks to hear back from certain clients and managers. We recommend touching base with the recruiter weekly for a status update.

8. Be Transparent and Share Other Offers
Discuss any other offers you receive with your recruiter so they are in the loop and can relay pertinent time frames to the client your resume has been submitted to.

9. Create Long-Term Partnership
Consistent communication is the key to a strong professional relationship. If you identify someone you want to work with, maintain communication with a brief check-in every 3 to 6 months. Connect with others in your network entering the job market with that recruiter to further the relationship.

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