Recruiters have a huge pool of conscientious candidates—and you may be one of them. You’ve either been referred by a hiring manager whom you met as a result of networking, or you submitted an online application. The recruiter may have already emailed or called you about the “next step.” This article provides actionable steps you can take when a recruiter reaches out or states they’ll “be in touch” and then stops communicating.
An example of when a recruiter stops communicating, and what to do next…
A candidate received a voicemail from a company recruiter, requesting that she come in for an interview within the next few days. The candidate tried to reach the recruiter over the next 36 hours to establish a meeting time. She left email and voicemail messages and received no response, and became unsure how to proceed.
The candidate speculates…
- Will she damage her chances with another call or email?
- Has the company all of a sudden become “uninterested” in her?
- Should she simply be patient?
- Was she imagining their interest in her?
What is the candidate’s next action?
Although the candidate deserves a timely follow-up (as a recruiter would expect from you), the reality is that you can only influence the actions you’d like from a recruiter.
Below are 5 action steps you can take to stay in touch:
- Go back to the person that referred you within the company and provide an update on your candidacy with the company. Let them know the last communication with the recruiter, and ask for their guidance on how to proceed (maybe they’ll offer to call to the recruiter). Leveraging your network for referrals.
- Decide when and how you’ll reach out to the recruiter if you haven’t heard back again within X days. With a plan and taking action, you’re in control. If the recruiter calls in the meantime, you’re ready.
- Continue with your research and formulating questions for the recruiter. Many times, your insightful questions are qualifiers for the position. You can take action by learning more about the employees and news that even the recruiter or hiring manager was unaware of—impressive!
- Demonstrate reasonable patience, but if it’s time to reach out again, include a comment about the company direction or an “on-topic” article you read. For example: “John, thanks again for your interest in me as a candidate when you called/emailed. I just read a PR piece that addresses the company’s rapid growth and I’m looking forward to our introduction about how I can contribute.”
- Here’s the “GAME CHANGER”: Continue taking action to develop relationships that lead to opportunities and referrals within the company. When you have professional relationships, referrals to opportunities create piqued interest in bringing you in to interview.
- When you have a lot of the right activity, then a recruiter’s interest may be one of many. You’ll have “options”.
When a recruiter reaches out, they may have the best of intentions, but their process slows them down, they’re deluged with tasks or perhaps lacking in communication skills themselves. The recruiter’s inaction is most likely caused by other circumstances, so take your own actions and maintain a positive perspective of your value!