When you are smack dab in the middle of searching for a job it’s easy to feel like you’re on your own.
But you actually have a friend out there! Recruiters. Some recruiters work with hiring managers at companies, others work as headhunters but their goal is the same: to fill an open position with the right person.
They can be a huge help in getting your resume in front of just the right people.
The Contingency Recruiter
Contingency recruiters—aka “headhunters”—works independently of the hiring company, often at a staffing firm. They’re contracted by a company to fill a position, but are only compensated if they find the candidate who’s hired.
How to Find Them
Similar to the corporate recruiter, they’ll often reach out to you. If you reach out, make sure you choose someone who specializes in your field or industry, as she’ll have the best connections and openings.
How it Works
The recruiter will call you in for an informational-style interview, either in person or over the phone, to get a sense of your background and career goals. After the interview, she’ll contact you if she’s hiring for positions that might be a good fit.
At this point, you can decide whether or not you want to be considered. Once you give her the green light, she’ll send your resume on to the company and help coordinate any interviews. If at any point the company rejects you from continuing on in the hiring process, she’ll pass on their feedback.
How to Make the Most of It
As you’re going through the process, be honest and open about your background, goals, and how you feel about the positions the recruiter sends your way. It’s in both of your best interest that you end up somewhere that will be a good fit, so if the position doesn’t sound right to you, ask more about it or let her know your specific concerns—the earlier, the better.
Also, stay in close contact with your recruiter. Follow up with her every few weeks if you haven’t heard from her. And if you find a job on your own, respect her time by letting her know, so she can stop considering you for positions.
Of course, working with a recruiter isn't a guarantee that you’ll get hired—but it can help you out by giving you insider information, finding job openings you don’t see elsewhere, and landing your resume to the top of the pile. And at the very least, it’ll make the job search process a little less lonely.