What NOT to do when working with recruiters

Here is some information you should know before commencing to work with a recruiter.

  • Never ever agree to pay any money to a recruiting agency for their services, or agree to any future financial obligations – e.g. re-paying their fees if you leave a job before their guarantee period is up. Recruiters are paid for their services by the company hiring and, in Canada, cannot ask a candidate for money to secure them a job. If a recruiter asks you for money to refer them to employers, do not use them.
  • Never do an “end-run” around a recruiter and apply directly to a job they told you about. That is extremely unethical, and almost never ends well. If, on the other hand, the recruiter does not submit you to their client company for whatever reason – then you have every right to go ahead and apply directly to that company on your own.
  • Do not sign any documents that promise “exclusive representation” by a recruiter. You have every right to work with multiple recruiters (as long as they are not working on the same job with the same company) and to continue applying directly to other companies. You should, however, inform your recruiter of other opportunities you are working on – especially if you are actually interviewing elsewhere, and may be getting close to an offer at another company.
  • Never lie to a recruiter about your qualifications, your experiences, your education, your salary history, or anything else! Be honest about everything, and expect the same in return. It can backfire on you if you lie.
  • Finally, do not put all of your job hopes into working with any recruiter, no matter how good they are. The real truth about working with recruiters is that while they can be a great resource, the vast majority of job-seekers today will NOT find their next job through a recruiter. Job-seekers should concentrate on their own networking activities designed to get them in front of decision-makers in their target companies. A recruiter is only one source of looking for work and you should continue to explore the other methods.

About Dorothy Keenan of FutureWorks

Dorothy is a certified résumé writer with 25 years of experience in providing career advice and support to 5,000 professionals in diverse industries including technology, science, gaming, trades, finance, manufacturing, warehouse, and administration to find fulfilling careers. Through her work, she has gained a solid understanding of the needs of British Columbia’s dynamic labour force. Her expertise in developing résumés, LinkedIn profiles, and cover letters has helped her clients move forward in their careers. Visit www.fwt.bc.ca or contact dorothyk@fwt.bc.ca

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