Recruiters are in a “war for talent” and have been for several years. The basis of that war? Being the first to find candidates qualified for their job openings. Exacerbating the situation for recruiters is that most of them are measured and rewarded for their time-to-hire performance — how quickly they fill a job. Consequently, recruiters are almost always looking for an easy hire.
If they run into an obstacle with one candidate, they quickly move on to the next candidate. You know, the easy hire.
Here’s how you can become an easy-to-hire candidate… and help recruiters win war for talent.
1. Be Easy to Find
Because recruiters are always searching for qualified candidates, being find-able online is essential. This means being visible on a site like LinkedIn. It also means using the right keywords for your target job (and target employers). Also be sure to share examples of your expertise visible by writing and publishing articles relevant to your profession and industry.
2. Make Your Goal Clear
Being generic doesn’t work today. You can’t simultaneously be seeking a job as a customer service rep and a executive assistant. Why? Because you won’t have sufficient focused visibility online to attract recruiters looking for someone qualified for the job you want.
3. Make Your Qualifications Clear
Focus your LinkedIn Profile and other online visibility as well as resumes and job applications on your accomplishments and achievements that prove you are qualified for your target job. If you are employed, don’t release any of your employer’s confidential information, but, respecting that limitation, describe your accomplishments.
4. Be Easy to Contact
Most recruiters don’t have an interest in spending a lot of time tracking down contact information. So, make contact info visible in your LinkedIn Profile. The best place to do that? In the large Summary section where someone, not connected to you, can find it. If you are employed, be sure to use contact information not related to your job.
Of course, provide a non-work email address. Many recruiters in a hurry prefer to reach out via phone. So, if possible, also include a non-work phone number. Services like Gmail and Google Voice are very useful for your non-work email and phone.
5. Be Responsive
Check the email account and phone number you have made visible (see #4 above) often. Then, respond reasonably quickly when a recruiter reaches out. Typically, a recruiter who contacts you (fighting that war for talent) is in a hurry. So if you don’t respond quickly, preferably within a few hours, they may cross you off the “possibles” list. Tip: forward both Gmail and Google Voice to other email addresses and phone numbers you check most often.
6. Follow Directions
Demonstrate your attention to detail in your communications with the recruiter and other members of the employer’s staff. After all, communication is a highly desired skill by most employers. If you agree to call, contact, or meet a recruiter, be sure to do it at the agreed upon time.
7. Monitor Your Online Reputation
As recruiters search to find qualified job candidates, they also research those candidates. Their goal? To verify information and to be sure they aren’t referring someone who has a bad reputation. So, the best defense is to Google yourself at least once a week. I call this “Defensive Googling” — NOT “vanity Googling” or “ego surfing.”
Want to be an easy hire? You need to know, and to manage as best you can, what shows up about you online.
Recruiters are fighting for their employers or clients because they have a hard time finding qualified job candidates. Make their jobs easy… by being an easy hire!
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Work Coach Cafe.
About the Author: Online job search expert Susan P. Joyce has been observing the online job search world and teaching online job search skills since 1995. A veteran of the United States Marine Corps. Susan is also a Visiting Scholar at the MIT Sloan School of Management. Susan has worked in human resources at Harvard University and in a consulting firm. Since 1998, Susan has been editor and publisher of Job-Hunt.org. Follow Susan on Twitter at @jobhuntorg and on Google+.