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T Price, Blogger

November 11, 2009

3 Min Read

When looking for work in the industry.  I want to share advice on working with recruiters and HR agents.  

Advice: Take praise from recruiters at face value

I think of a recruiter as a Hollywood agent that is trying to land you as a client.  In many cases a recruiter will artificially inflate your ego so they can represent you to a publisher.  Resist their charming accolades and focus on the offers they have.

Advice: Recruiters can give you terrific, unpublished leads...now what do you do?

Frankly, if you really want to work at company, take the lead and pursue the lead yourself.  In most cases, HR’s personal relationship with a recruiter is not as strong as their desire to save the 10-20% commission fee for your employment. 

Advice: Recruiters are your friend…until you fail.

A recruiter that finds you a job opportunity and then arranges a job opportunity is placing a bet on you.  They win if you are given an offer and you accept.  They lose if you fail the interview.  As a failed interviewee, you will want to know what happened.  You thought you aced the interview, so then why the rejection by the company.  In almost every case that I asked a recruiter to get specifics on why I was passed over, they refused to or were given boilerplate HR rejection.  It is just not in their interest to badge a company’s HR on why you were rejected.  If they push too hard on company, the company may blacklist them.   

Advice: Never, ever, argue with Recruiters/HR from a company.

This advice is mainly for a company’s recruiter or HR rep.  The two instances that I have argued with a company’s recruiting representative over a position (deal terms or interview result) have hurt my career significantly.  In one case, the recruiter yanked my job offer after I called him on his poor attitude and communication during a salary increase negotiation. 

This is a small industry people, if you make waves during the interview rounds or during negotiations, you will find yourself on the dreaded hire blacklist (which is industry-wide).  Being on this list, as I have been, will significantly reduce your interview offers.  Getting off it, takes years of rebuilding and relationship patching.  

No matter how unprofessional a recruiter or HR agent is to you…suck it down and do not complain.   

Advice: Find one or two agencies and stick with them.

Although a third party recruiter has never found me a job, I do know friends that have had great success.  These friends only use a couple agencies.  There are some terrific agencies out there (DAM, Mary Margaret) who will reward your loyalty with extended efforts to find you work.

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