It can be very effective to work with a headhunter or recruiter to advance your career. Headhunters will have access to jobs that aren’t advertised anywhere else, and can make the hiring process quicker between you and an employer. It’s important, though, to know how a headhunter works, which is for the employer. Read on to learn how to improve your chances of getting a job through a headhunter, and what mistakes you should avoid.
1. You look sneaky if you hold back information.
You have to be as honest as possible with your recruiter. This applies to your preferences, your career, and anything else that might impact your search. Always tell the headhunter when your position, company, or compensation preferences change. Also, tell him or her about anything that might interfere with your job search.
2. It’s harder for a headhunter to place you if you only offer a vague description of your accomplishments.
Show specific and measurable results; don’t make the headhunter try to translate what you say into how it will fill the needs of the employer. Try talking to the headhunter about what you can do for him or her.
3. Don’t assume the headhunter will do all the work.
A headhunter cannot force a company to pick up your resume. Also, it isn’t his or her job to get you hired; rather, it is to find the right person for the company which has hired the headhunter’s services.
4. Always gear your resume towards each position.
When you don’t tailor your resume to a specific job, a headhunter assumes you are either wrong for the position, or lazy. It’s okay to have different versions of your resume, as long as everything is the truth. If you’re applying for an job that requires a certain type of experience, make sure to show all your information that is relatable to that experience.
5. Don’t waste your time applying for jobs you aren’t qualified to perform.
Be realistic. When you apply for jobs you are under-qualified for, or for which you have no experience, you waste both your time and that of the headhunter.
6. A poor online reputation will ruin your chances.
A headhunter or talent agency doesn’t want to consider you to be a risk in any way. Monitor your online presence on social networking sites like Facebook; just Google your name and see what shows to the public. You can also create a Google Alert for your first and last name in order to keep track of what shows up about you online.
7. Don’t be inflexible and don’t hide your compensation requirements.
This allows the headhunter to ensure your expectations and what the position in question are compatible. If not, it’s pointless to waste everyone’s time. When it comes to flexibility, a lot of companies these days want to try out new employees as contractors and reserve the right to hire them full-time. Be flexible when it comes to different forms of compensation, too.
8. Not customizing your cover letter will guarantee that your resume gets recycled, not read.
A personalized cover letter addressed to the headhunter will have a much higher chance of being read by a busy headhunter. Further, always ensure you have the right spelling and gender of the person to whom you are addressing the letter.