Questions every job seeker should ask when talking to a recruiter

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Across the nation, employees are evaluating their current job situations and making the decision to seek new opportunities. To take the job search to the next level, working with an experienced recruiter could be a transformative choice.

A year and a half into the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re seeing record numbers of employees resigning from their current roles to seek something new.

Some have dubbed this the “great resignation”–a phenomenon that rose out of the changes and challenges brought by the pandemic. So many months spent working from home has caused many workers to realize they have zero desire to return to the office. Employers are scrambling to enhance their benefits packages to help recruit and retain top talent, but many are falling short. There are thousands of unfilled job openings, especially in industries like tech and IT, where average job growth is expected to outpace overall job growth by two-to-five times through the end of this decade.

Job seekers hold all the cards right now. However, just because the odds are in the candidate’s favor doesn’t mean they shouldn’t utilize the best tools available to them when searching for a new position. An experienced recruiter can be the very best resource for job seekers who want to find the ideal match for their skill sets and goals.

If you’re considering a professional switch this year, it’s important to find a great recruiter before you hand in your two weeks notice. And while there are a ton of recruiting firms and staffing agencies out there, it’s important for every job seeker to carefully interview and vet each recruiting agency before making a selection. This includes knowing which questions to ask potential recruiters before agreeing to work with them.

As a leading global talent solutions firm, Vaco emphasizes relationships—not transactions—between recruiters and candidates. And we’re passionate about giving candidates the tools they need for a transformative job search.

Below, Vaco Managing Director Taylor Desseyn outlines some key questions to ask yourself when choosing a recruiter.

#1: How strong is their relationship to the hiring company?

You need to know how connected the recruiter is with the company they claim to represent. The more they know about the position they’re sharing with you, the more legitimate they are.

If the recruiter can’t answer basic questions about the company or the position itself, they probably won’t be a great resource in helping you determine if the role is a good fit for you.

#2: What are the specifics on the role the recruiter is presenting to you?

Make sure you get all of the details on the position they’re presenting to you. Ask these questions:

  • What are the long-term goals of this position?
  • Is this just a contract position, or is there a budget and plan for this to be a contract-to-hire opportunity?

This will help you determine if the position aligns with your long-term goals and plan for the future—especially if the position is temporary.

#3: What is their track record with the hiring company?

Ask the recruiter how many candidates (job seekers) they’ve placed with the hiring company. This will show you if the recruiter is on good terms with the company they’re representing and give insight on the depth of the relationship. The more people they’ve placed before, the more likely they’ll be able to successfully place you, too. If the recruiter doesn’t have a lot of success placing qualified candidates with this company, then they probably don’t have a strong relationship with them.

Just as recruiters are interviewing job seekers to see if they want to work with them, job seekers should be holding interviews of their own. Aligning yourself with the right recruiter will open you up for even more opportunities in this intense job market. Not only will you have access to more openings, but a good recruiter can also help you find positions that offer potentially higher salaries and better align with your workplace motivators. And remember: don’t sell yourself short!

 Taylor Desseyn is a Managing Director for Vaco’s Nashville office

Connect with a recruiter today & maximize your job search.

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