I know this is going to sound pretty rich. A recruiter explaining why job seekers seem to dislike recruiters. It’s not that we don’t know what’s being said out there. We’ve heard it all, and we understand where it comes from. We even realize there are going to be individuals that just aren’t ready to believe us when we say that we’re a different sort of recruiter. After all, that’s what all the recruitment agencies say. So give us a few minutes to convince you otherwise.

No one goes into their profession looking to be part of the problem. The trouble is when there is an established culture it’s very hard not to get lumped in with the crowd. One bad apple spoils the bunch, as they say.

We know and respect, plenty of lawyers and investment bankers, all of whom are dedicated professionals. But toss those professions around in polite company, and you’re bound to get more than a few jokes. We like to think we’re the same. We know there are numerous recruiters out there who are letting down the industry with their self-serving tactics, but we are confident that our team holds to the core values that made us want to do this job in the first place. We believe there is a “right position” out there for everyone and love being part of making those connections. There is absolutely still a thrill in the chase for us, but it’s not enough to just put anyone in any seat. The sweet spot for us in when the job and the applicant line up so perfectly that it feels like a bit of alchemy. Let’s face it, you only get to be the recruiter of choice for some of Ottawa’s top employers by delivering solutions that work for everyone involved.

However, with all that said, let’s have a look at some of the things that make job seekers really come to despise recruiters. Maybe we can shine a little sunshine on these bad apples and restore the confidence and trust in our chosen profession that it deserves.

Sending You Out For Something You Are Not Qualified For

Let’s lead with this particular annoyance. You’ve met with the recruiter. You’ve shared and probably reviewed your resume with them in significant depth. Then they line up an interview and tell you the job is perfect for you. Now, if you’re like most candidates, you’ve had to manage time away from your regularly scheduled job to get yourself there in a timely fashion. You’ve spent some evening time reviewing the company. You’ve probably also given yourself the best pep talk possible to calm those pre-interview jitters. “I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it, people like me.” So when it happens, it doesn’t take long, sitting there across from the interviewer, to realize that you do not have the required skills they’re looking for. The first time this happened to me, the interviewer actually expressed shock that I was being put forward for the position, as several of the people I would be managing were considerably more experienced than I was.

Nothing quite knocks the wind out of your sails like being set up to fail so spectacularly. It’s hearing about experiences like these that have made our team so committed to not letting it happen to the job seekers that walk through our doors. We take considerable care to ensure there is a good skills-match between what the role calls for and what our candidate has, well before we set up an appointment. For us, it’s simple, if we send the wrong candidates to employers the companies eventually look elsewhere. Not to mention, if we send job-seekers to jobs they won’t get they too will quickly find other channels to look for employment. And, when you’re working in an ecosystem like Ottawa – big enough to have everything you want and yet small enough to remember those who have burned you –  your reputation is everything.

Pressuring You To Take A Job That’s Not Right

Sometimes, despite not being right for the job, you manage to get a callback. Occasionally, depending on the marketplace, you may even get an offer for a position that’s in no way right for you or the path you want to take your career. To a recruiter that just cares about making their numbers, this doesn’t matter, and they start working pressure tactics to get you to take a position that’s not right for you. Often this means that in short order you’ll be out looking for something else.

At LRO Staffing, you’re the final say. We want you to be excited about the next step in your career, and we don’t want to ever push you into something that’s not right. We’ll spend the time to find the proper role, and when after five or ten years you’re ready to make another move, we hope you’ll let us work with you again to take that next step. It’s always about the long game for us.

Recruiter SPAM is Out of Control

One of the reasons so many people dislike recruiters is because they have become yet another group who takes your information, blasts you with SPAM and then sells the list off every which way they can. In some industries, especially Tech, recruiter emails are so numerous that after the initial annoyance, they simply end up being filtered into the Junk folder. This makes your inbox easier to manage but also means when it’s time to look for a new gig, you may miss out on having some legitimate assistance believing all recruiters are the same. The downside to the proliferation of online job apps is that many recruiters feel they have to compete, all the time, for your attention. It’s like they forget we’re matching talented professionals with legitimate companies in need, and not sorting mailorder spouses from overseas.

Simply put, we don’t sell lists, and we don’t SPAM our database. We only want to hear from you when you’re ready to talk. Of course, if we have you as a client and we come across something we think might be perfect for you, we’ll let you know. But, the important thing is that each of these is on a case by case basis. It’s so important to us that we don’t end up in your SPAM filter that we actually agonize over everything we send out. Is it useful? Is it professional? Is it in the best interests of our clients? Having your contact information is a privilege, and we don’t take it lightly.

The Disappearing Recruiter

The other side of the recruiter that SPAMs you every chance they get is the recruiter that loses interest before they’ve finished the job. Too many times we’ve heard from candidates about recruiters that seem super eager off the hop, but after the initial meeting, they appear to have trouble returning calls or answering emails. They’ve brought you in with big expectations only to then seem to forget all about you.

What’s even worse is the recruiter that disappears when the challenge proves a little tougher than expected. Sometimes, depending on the skills you have and the cycle of the job market, it can take time to line up the right fit. There can even be several interviews that don’t end up connecting you with the appropriate company. It’s here that you need a recruiter committed to you as their client. The recruiters that cut and run after the going gets a touch tough are looking for the quick win (read: quick dollar) without putting in the effort. And, truth be told, it’s primarily these individuals that are dragging down the profession.

At LRO Staffing, we like to say that relationships are everything and we mean it. Sometimes we get a quick placement, but it’s not because we SPAM employers hoping for a lucky break. We build relationships with industry insiders all over Ottawa and beyond and we know what they’re looking for. We also build solid relationships with the job seekers we represent, first and foremost because we want to help them find the right position. However, it should come as no surprise that because of how much effort we invested in developing good relationships with those job-seekers we’ve placed previously, they often become a brilliant source of intel and a reliable pathway for placing future candidates. In a world that is increasingly relying on all things digital, maintaining personal relationships is becoming a bit of a lost art, but one that is definitely going to set you apart when it comes to finding that next career opportunity.

The Clingy Headhunter

The other side of the ghosting recruiter is the one who just won’t give you a moment’s peace. So over-eager to get you into a new job that they actually call you more than your mom. At first, it feels great, it seems like this recruiter is really taking an interest in your situation. They want to get you into something new as much as you want to be there. But then, the emails keep coming. The phone calls at your office persist. You start to feel that at any moment they’re going to slip up and out you to your current employer. It feels like they might be just a little too keen and often times all this effort starts to feel a bit haphazard. Like they’re spinning their wheels a little too much and getting you nowhere. They mean well, but eventually, you’ll notice that every play feels like a Hail-Mary!

When it comes to job-seekers that work with us, we want to see them land in that next position. For the companies we work with, we want to solve their skills challenge. However, it all needs to be very well thought out. At LRO Staffing we have you in for a thorough meeting to get to know you completely. What is your employment history? What are your skills? What is your ambition? Where do you want to be in five years? We want it all down up front so that when we represent you in the marketplace, we have the full picture. Much as a good lawyer should know the case inside and out before it goes to trial, we don’t want to be phoning you up one detail at a time as we attempt to represent you to prospective employers.

Why Job Seekers Avoid Recruiters

The Over Promise

It’s no secret connecting people and employment is our job. We’re passionate about it, but we also make our living at it. Recruiters who become too focused on the making-a-living bit and lose sight of the passion part are sometimes prone to making big promises to try and bring on new business. Of course, we’re not saying there is anything wrong with lofty goals, only that they need to be based on sound reasoning and continually benchmarked to make sure the logic holds up as the plan unfolds. Promising a prospective client the moon without a path to delivering is a significant reason companies, and job-seekers are losing faith in their recruiters. Often times it’s the over-promise that leads to a lot of the other problem symptoms listed above. Recruiters who get in over their heads on their commitments resort to SPAM and other undesirable tactics, sending you out on interviews that don’t fit your skills, stalking you at work, or just plain disappearing, all because they made promises they can’t live up to.

We believe in a dynamic plan. No matter if we’re working with a company to fill their staffing needs or assisting a candidate to land the next big career challenge. We start by understanding our client. Knowing what they are looking for and what they have. And then, we’re honest. It sounds so simple, but it’s the foundation of any relationship. We’ve told job-seekers that given the market, they won’t get paid what they were hoping for. We’ve told companies that the candidate they are looking for is going to cost more than their current budget suggests. Sure, we will sometimes lose out to recruiters who promise the moon, but we’ve seen too many times those same clients coming back through our door when it becomes clear the other recruiter’s plan was nothing more than cross your fingers and hope.

As recruiters that are both passionate and committed about the work we do, we’re always disheartened to hear that there are counterparts letting down our reputation as a profession. However, the one bright spot to this is just how delighted we’re able to make our clients feel when they realize how seriously we take their needs and how thoroughly we investigate every option to provide them with the best possible solution! We’ve found that the one upside to bad apples is that the good apples really stand out. So that said, we invite you to put us to the test. If you’re looking to make a career change, and you’re looking to add some professional heft to your effort, give us a call. And if you’re working for an organization and you’ve been charged with staffing efforts for your department or even entire organization, and been disappointed in the past, get in touch today and see what a difference we can make.

We’ll show you why all those things you’ve heard about job-seekers hating recruiters, don’t apply at LRO Staffing.

Peter Heuthorst

Author Peter Heuthorst

Leveraging his previous staffing expertise, Peter joined LRO in order to help advance business development efforts within the realm of IT & Engineering. Recruitment savvy and passionate about networking, Peter plans on making a long career in the industry and loves learning about new technologies.

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