Connecting with and building a relationship with a recruiter can be an exciting part of your job search. Their job is to help guide you towards a better career. Some recruiters may come to you with specific job prospects, or they may ask what your career goals are in general.
Whether you have been approached by a recruiter with a specific job offering or you are working with a recruiter to look at several jobs, ask questions! Recruiters are a resource for you in your job search, so asking questions is a standard and smart practice.
In some cases, recruiters may be looking at you because you are a very strong candidate for a specific position. However, it is worth inquiring to see if they can help you even if this particular job falls through. Building a relationship with a recruiter can help you achieve your career goals in the short and long term.
A “no” is not necessarily a deal killer, but it indicates what the recruiter is looking for. In some cases, they may not have other opportunities because you are not looking for work in an industry that they specialize in. It is important to find a recruiter who specializes in your industry. On the other hand, the right recruiter can save you a lot of time and stress in your job hunt. Recruiters can give you insight on trends in your industry and may be working with multiple clients you are interested in working for
Take advantage of the fact that the recruiter has probably worked with this client before. How strict is the dress code? What kind of reputation does management have? How many hours do people typically work?
Ask them their personal opinion on whether you will be a good fit. Taking a dream job that turns into a nightmare because you just do not belong in that culture is common…and relatively easy to avoid. Learning more about the culture can help you determine how to dress for an interview. While the standard attire for an interview is a suit, if every day is very casual, you may want to go with a sport coat or simple dress instead.
Ask this question along with why it is open. Find out why the last holder of the position left. This can help you uncover red flags that might indicate that applying is a bad idea. High turnover is often a bad sign. Asking if the recruiter has filled this position before and how recently can help identify that.
If the recruiter does not know why the previous person left, or “They did not fit in with the office culture.” This answer is vague, so take it with a grain of salt. It does not mean you would not fit in, but if this is combined with high turnover, it can indicate a toxic work environment. If the answer is that they got promoted, that is obviously a good sign.
If the position has been open for a while, it may indicate the employer is picky. On the other hand, if it only just opened, then you are likely to have to wait longer for an answer.
A lot of the time, you really do not need all of the qualifications listed in the job description. However, there are generally one or two things the employer requires you to have. Asking the recruiter what those are can tell you whether you are wasting your time. It is good to push for a position you are not 100% qualified for, but a waste of time to interview for a job you have no chance of getting.
You might even want to ask why past candidates were not selected, which can also help you determine whether you are a good fit. Part of the point of talking to the recruiter is so you can decide whether to apply for the job.
The recruiter or lose colleague of theirs has likely met and worked with the person who will be interviewing you at the client company. Finding out what this person is like can help you ace the interview or avoid minefields. They may also be able to tell you what to expect in terms of how long the interview will be. It is also helpful to know what position they actually hold in the company. A recruiter can also inform you if you will be facing multiple interviews or a “panel” interview with multiple people on the other side of the desk.
Working with a recruiter can be a great way to find the right job, but you need to be willing to ask the right questions. Not only do you want to make sure that the position they are suggesting for you is a good match, but that you are comfortable working with them in general. Looking for new career opportunities? Contact Atlantic Group today to learn more!
A recruiter is a great person to have a candid discussion about the compensation and benefits a company has to offer so you do not have to discuss this with the hiring manager during the interview process.
If the job is in another city or state, ask about relocation assistance. The answer can make a difference as to whether you are willing or able to take the job and can also help you gauge how interested the company is in you specifically.
In addition, ask how much travel the position is likely to involve, how flexible the hours are, etc. It is always worth poking to see what you can find out about whether a prospective employer supports work-life balance or expects an intense amount of work from their employees. While some people enjoy that kind of fast-paced environment, others may burn out.