How to Get Noticed by Recruiters

The Internet has been a mixed blessing for executive recruiters. While it allows them to gather resumes quickly and electronically from all over the world, it has also left them inundated with resumes with every job they post.

As a potentially qualified candidate for a recruiter’s search assignment, how do you get noticed among the thousands of resumes in a recruiter’s inbox? What can you do to differentiate your resume and help the recruiter jumpstart your career? Here are ten tactics to improve your chances of getting the kind of attention you want. Most importantly, you must first understand the role of recruiter. Recruiters don’t find jobs for people — they find people for companies! It’s an important distinction to know, if you want to be noticed and even placed by a recruiter.

1. Recruiters normally are filling several positions at once and it becomes difficult to keep thousands of resumes in order. Today the preferred method of sending your resume is by email. Putting the position and your name in the subject line will ensure that you are being assessed for the right position. Example: VP Business Development — John Doe.

2. Include an executive profile at the top of your resume. Your profile, by giving the recruiter a snapshot of your experience, could be one of the most important sections of your resume. Be sure to tailor your experience, skills and education to the job that you are applying for. A recruiter faced with 1000 resumes can’t possibly read each one thoroughly; the executive profile is an effective way to make it through the first cut.

3. Make sure to explain all gaps in employment even if you were taking classes or raising a family. A recruiter doesn’t have time to call each candidate and get an explanation for what you were doing during a time of unemployment on your resume.

4. Be sure to include a personalized cover letter expressing your interest in relocation, and geographical preferences. A candidate from New Mexico applying for a job in Boston is more likely to be contacted if the cover letter explains that the candidate has family in the Northeast and is looking to relocate there.

5. In the cover letter give a detailed description of the ideal company, position and industry that you would be most interested in working for. This description should be closely related to your career path and related experience.

6. Your cover letter should also provide your realistic salary requirements and be specific. Include your current base salary, incentive bonus and/or commission structure, company car, profit sharing, etc. Don’t worry–the executive recruiter will fight to get you the most attractive offer possible. The recruiter will assess the opportunity and contact you if the job seems right for you for reasons other than salary alone.

7. Make sure your resume includes a brief description of each company you worked for, stating the industry, approximate revenue and specialty in the market. No recruiter in the world has the time or the knowledge to know the background of every company that shows up on a resume.

8. List specific accomplishments in each of your past jobs, including numbers and outcomes whenever possible. There is no easier way for a recruiter to sell your experiences to a client company than by using specific examples and benchmarks you have achieved.

9. Follow up with an email one and a half to two weeks after sending your resume. Include a new cover letter expressing your continued interest and remember to attach your resume. By then, the recruiters will have a better handle on the position and will be able to quickly assess if you are a potential fit for the client company.

10. Be persistent without being pushy. Recruiters assess personality and cultural fit to the same degree that they look for the necessary skills to perform the job. If you haven’t been contacted, it may not mean you aren’t qualified for the position. It may simply mean that someone else better fit the company’s expectations. Maintain a good relationship with an executive recruiter. You never know when you’ll get a call for your dream job.

Remember, recruiters do not find jobs for people…..They find people for companies!

Good Hunting! Coach Mark

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