Listening to Recruiter Feedback

By Joe Stein

 
For many years, my advice for Job Seekers has graced these pages of WNYJOBS.com. Each week I have offered tips and suggestions for how you can position yourself in the best way possible to land your desired job. This week, however, we are going to take a little different approach. What we did instead, is reach out to area Human Resources Professionals and asked them to provide feedback to Job Seekers.
 
What you will read below, is the combined feedback of seven area professionals who were gracious enough to spend the time on this assignment. As with most of the advice of my column, you should find it fairly basic and heavily slanted towards common sense. Searching for a job can be difficult, but it does not have to be complicated. 
 
So, without further ado, here it is - feedback direct from area Recruiters:
 
·         Be Prepared – This is probably the item that was noted the most often by the respondents. The suggestion is pretty simple; come to each interview prepared. This may be as basic as actually remembering what position you applied for along with some of the details surrounding the job. It is also expected that you will have some basic knowledge of the company. The higher the level of position, the greater the expectations that you will be prepared. In today’s world of the internet, it is quite easy to research information so that you have an understanding of the company. 
 
·         Follow Instructions – This item can be linked with the note above recommending candidates to be prepared. Listen intently to the Recruiter on the other side of the conversation. If they tell you to bring something (such as ID, dates of past employment, etc.), then be ready for this request. In every job, the ability to follow instructions is crucial. If you can’t do this before you are even hired, then it is likely you will struggle with this once hired. If you have any doubt regarding what to wear or bring, then ask prior to the interview. 
 
·         Want the Job – This one seems pretty obvious, but it is a common concern amongst the area’s Recruiters. When pursuing a position, make it clear that you are interested in the position and company. Stay engaged during the conversation.
 
·         Be Positive - Stay positive throughout the interview, even when talking about former jobs and supervisors. Recruiters cringe when a candidate starts speaking very negatively of a former company. 
 
·         Have an Answer for Common Questions – Most Recruiters will not ask you any questions that are not common interview questions. Anticipate what you are going to be asked and have an answer ready. For example, you will be asked about your work history and why you left previous employers. It is expected that you will be able to explain why you no longer work at your previous jobs, and have understandable reasons for your previous decisions.
 
·         Sell Yourself – Understand the job description and requirements, and communicate to the Recruiter why you are the right person for the job. You, of course, do not want to overdo it by coming on too strong or by speaking too much about yourself, especially if it is off topic.
 
·         Write a Good Resume – It was noted, by several Recruiters, how the Resume is often the first impression that they will receive about a candidate. The tips provided are very simple, but often overlooked.   They vary from making sure it is error-free, to choosing your words wisely, to carefully select your paper if sending a hard copy.
 
·         Common Courtesy – I will end the list and feedback with probably the most basic…be courteous! Don’t answer your phone or text while being interviewed. Offer a firm, but not aggressive, handshake. Make eye contact during the conversation and don’t forget to smile.
 
Although finding a new job can prove to be very challenging, some of the best ways to differentiate yourself from your competition are actually not that hard. The suggestions above were taken directly from area HR Professionals who make hiring decisions every day in their jobs. They know what they are looking for in a candidate, and they definitely have an idea of what separates the best ones from those who receive a “no thanks”. Be a savvy Job Seeker and make sure you use as many of these “little” tips as possible. You just may find they will lead to “big” results.
 
As always, best of luck in your job search!