Cutting Out The Recruiter?

Cutting Out The Recruiter?

You see a fantastic job which you feel fits your experience and requirements perfectly.

You contact the person on the advert and it’s a third party agency. The contact promises you a call back which doesn’t happen.

You chase. Nothing.

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You really want the job and contact HR directly. They tell you all applications are being handled by x third party recruiter. They put you in touch again.

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After another brief chat recruiter X they promise you a job specification. It doesn’t arrive.

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What now?

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Sound familiar? You are not alone. Unfortunately it’s not uncommon. This whole post has arisen from a twitter conversation with a great professional candidate who faced such a dilemma last week.

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First, stay calm. Do not let your frustration get the better of you. You do not know the relationship this recruiter has with the organisation. They may sit on site, they maybe off site. They may have an exclusive arrangement, or be one of many recruiters working on the position. They may just be a small part of the administration process or the actual short-lister. The company may have hired them for all positions within the organisation or just this one. They may have worked together for years or this is the first occasion. They maybe just a temporary solution whilst another recruiter is away.

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Of course none of this should affect their behaviour towards you, but, unfortunately it means you need them and so need to include them in your communications.

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I’m not suggesting you do nothing.

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Yet, I do recommend not jumping straight in and complaining to anyone in the HR department who will listen. Like it or not, your relationship building and communication skills are on display here to your potential employer.

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Try to escalate with the third party first. Keep an email audit trail briefly outlining conversations and agreed actions. Throughout clearly highlight how you specifically fit the profile and what you would bring to the organisation (not what a perfect job this would be for you.)

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Be clear on what you want the recruiter to do moving forward and try to pin a contact point down. If unsuccessful, let the recruiter know you are going to contact the organisation directly before you do so (it’s amazing how fast a response may be given after this point usually.)

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If you do then contact the company, as before, use email as an audit trail, focus again on how you are relevant and what you could offer and try to get confirmation that your details are being considered and are in front of the hiring manager.

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Although outline you have had some trouble with communicating with specified contact, try to get the HR contact on side in assisting you in making that contact as well. It should never be your suggestion to cut the recruiter out. Try to include them wherever possible. Try and keep all routes of communication open, using c.c in emails is a wonderful way to do that. It tells all parties what’s going on so they are aware and can take appropriate action as they see fit to do so.

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Do be clear in the body of the email what action you specially want the intended recipient to take however.

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Naming and shaming is powerful. It adds value to the recruitment industry and the organisation. Although cathartic for you, it does not always bring your intended result. Do not let it jeopardise your current application.

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Sarah Cooper has over 14 years Recruitment experience gained in both an internal and agency environment. As one of the founding Directors of McGinnis Loy Ltd, specialist Finance and HR Recruiters, she is still actively recruiting in the marketplace today. Follow her tweets @approachmarket

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