“Rudy,” a candidate I recently interviewed, described a curious conversation he’d had with a recruiter for an agency in Chicago. “Don’t call me,” the recruiter had said. It was ok to text her; it was ok to email her; but it was never acceptable to call her. Rudy found that curious and a little distancing. I agree.
As I thought about this later and pondered why anyone in staffing would accept emails or texts from active candidates (being considered for specific openings) but not calls, I came to a couple of realizations.
The general realization is that recruiters and other HR professionals have established practices for the organizations they represent. For most agencies and employers, each individual contact must be documented. So a 10-minute call can take twice that long by the time a recruiter types notes into a database record. Rudy’s conversation was a good reminder that recruiters (and their employers) differ in practices about how they’d like to be contacted and how often.
The more specific “aha” that came for me is that some recruiters use an applicant-tracking system that automatically enters content into their database. It’s possible that the person Rudy described has a database technology that can easily convert and record contacts by email or by text, but not by phone. So her preference for email/text contacts may simply reflect what’s easiest for her in recording transactions (as all recruiters do in one way or another).
What is the best way to keep in contact with recruiters? It varies!
At Frank’s Employment, our recruiters agree that our applicants have a variety of circumstances and use a variety of technologies. We try to remain open to the diverse ways our candidates might stay in contact.
We’re a small staff and we each handle a big portfolio of searches and jam-packed calendars. So, like most HR professionals, on any given day we may not have availability for unscheduled in-person meetings with new applicants. Even so, we’re happy to hear from our candidates by email, text, phone, or even social media messages (such as LinkedIn). We appreciate your contact!
by Elyse Williamson