Top 5 Red Flags to Look Out for When Working With a Recruiter

Apr 13, 2017

working with a recruiterYou decided to work with a recruiter. You know they have a way with people, and know their way around the staffing industry. You may have even found someone who you think is perfect for your needs. But maybe some of their behaviors are making you worry. Do they have what it takes to help you find good employees?

You might be wondering how to tell the good recruiters from the bad. While there isn’t one best way to be a recruiter, there are some issues that should not come up in a recruiter relationship. Here are the top five red flags you should know about.

They Don’t Communicate with You

Lack of communication is one of the biggest red flags possible. If a recruiter doesn’t take the time to talk to you about what you want, and give you updates on the process, they aren’t doing their job. A recruiter’s job is to listen, give feedback, and get to know you and your needs. If they aren’t giving you the time of day, they shouldn’t be working in the recruiting business.

Sometimes recruiters don’t have news for you. Businesses can get a little scatterbrained, and forget to check in with their recruiters. Even if this is the case, a good recruiter will check in with you to tell you that they haven’t found anything. No news is not good news.  It’s a sign you should find a new recruiter.

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They Try to Get You to Settle for Less Than You’re Worth

Unless you’ve quoted a ridiculously high number- 300 an hour for a job that’s only worth 30 an hour- recruiters should not try to talk you down from your salary to take a position unless it meets every other requirement you have for a new opportunity. You need to understand the value of your skill set is determined by the market and the demand of those skills, but there is still a range that should be within the scope of your search. While they might not have very many positions available that match your expertise and pay grade, they should still work with you to find you something that fits.

They Push You to Accept a Position You Don’t Want

If you’ve made it very clear to your recruiter that you want nothing to do with administrative positions, and they keep telling you about the various administrative positions they have available, that means they’re just trying to fill vacancies and don’t actually care about your career goals. If this is the case, you should run for the hills.

Of course, it’s one thing if they do this when they’re still trying to understand what you’re looking for in a job. But if they continue to do this after you’ve given them feedback on what you do and don’t want in a position, then it’s time to find someone else.

They Won’t Talk About the Company or Position

There is no reason for a recruiter to not tell you about a company. If they don’t know about the company or the position, they should not be looking for candidates.

If you hear the term “confidential search” without the recruiter being able to at least discuss what kind of company (size, industry and some basic information) this usually means that the recruiter is looking for candidates to market or pad their network with, and that they don’t actually have a position for you. Some companies really do “confidential searches” when they need to replace someone or they do not want general knowledge of the opening; however, if they can’t tell you upfront the why as to the confidentiality or information on the company, you shouldn’t trust anything they say. It’s one thing for them to tell you that they don’t have anything right now, but will keep you in mind for future positions. But if they act like they have something when they really don’t, it’s time to move on.

They Have a Shady Past

Your recruiter should be comfortable telling you about themselves. If you don’t know where they came from,  or if you see that this is the 10th recruiting firm they’ve worked with, something is up. A recruiter’s work history should say a lot about their reliability.

If you can’t get this information from your recruiter, you should be able to ask the firm they are working with for information on their experience. However, if a recruiter is reluctant to tell you about their work history, you might want to reconsider working with them. If you still can’t find their history or qualifications, then there’s nothing to say that they actually know what they are doing. Credibility goes a long way, and if they don’t have it, they don’t deserve to work with you.

Most recruiters won’t act in a way that will make you doubt their intentions. However, there are always a few out there that make you wonder. Use this, along with common sense, to find a recruiter that fits you.

If you’ve been burned in the past by bad recruiters, let Profyle Tracker show you how a job search is supposed to go. Contact us today!

About the author

wrote 29 articles on this blog.