I would like to clarify that this post is addressing a common issue within the staffing industry through humor, so please don’t be offended.
The recruiter is essentially working for you, the candidate, to find the best possible job that matches your skills and career goals. From the very beginning, the match-making begins. Your recruiter is working hard for you to meet your needs and to please their customer in finding the right candidate. Yes, this is how they are paid, but the good recruiters do it for the satisfaction of making that perfect match. A match that would not have otherwise occurred, had the recruiter not found the commonalities between the two parties to develop a connection. When you are a successful recruiter, you are one because you love making this connection. If this mindset guides you, then the money will come.
During this process, you either fall in love or your don’t. But typically there is a certain amount of intimacy that you as the candidate are sharing with your recruiter. It’s just expected. Anything from details around your salary, your aspirations, even discussing what the best move is for you and your family. There are multiple conversations over weeks or even months to find you that perfect job.
If you are relocating to another state, there are several things to that can be provided for you, the candidate. The recruiter has your best interest at heart. Things to consider in a partnership are loyalty, trust, respect and integrity. You expect it from your recruiter and guess what? Your recruiter expects it in return. So why do you, the candidate, decide during the final stages of this intimate matching making process, to disappear? Why do you decide to stop communicating directly with your recruiter or not return emails/calls? Why do you all of sudden, in the final round of interviews with your recruiter’s client, decide, you are going to take another job that you never even mentioned to your recruiter throughout this long journey together? Why do you decide not to tell your recruiter about a questionable reference or something on your background check that you know will come up? Why do you agree to accept a position, sign an offer letter and then just not show up to work? What has happened to the commitment you made to one another in the beginning of his process? What changed?
To clarify, I am not a recruiter. However, I watch this happen in our staffing industry so often that I find it humorous that there can be such a lack of communication between two people and I really want to know why. I did have the opportunity to sit down with a few different recruiters and hear some of their personal experiences with candidates and I’d love to share for you to have a perspective on what they endure in this highly competitive market space.
I like to call this one “Candidate Gone Rogue.”
“Once I got a call from a hiring manager 2 days after the start date of a person I placed and asked when she was planning on showing up to work. I was like “wait, what? She is not there?” I realized there were red flags about this girl and her commitment to moving across country, but chose to ignore them throughout the process. I realized even though she was telling me everything was good and she was coming, at the last hour (a few days before she was supposed to move across the country and start her new job) wouldn’t return any of my phone calls and just kept telling me she was “busy” and would call me later. I figured she was just busy moving, but really she was busy ignoring me, so she didn’t have to tell me she had made the decision she wasn’t going to start the job.”
Unwritten Rule #1: Recruiter: Listen to the red flags. Candidate: Show up to work on your first day.
Here is the process: A client needs someone who is an expert in a certain area-> a recruiting agency is an expert finding those experts-> a recruiter finds the perfect expert-> that expert gets interviewed by the client-> the client hires the expert to be an employee-> the expert accepts the job and everyone is happy.
Did you see the last part about the expert accepting the job and everyone is happy? Great. So, if at any point during this process you decide to bail, please do it before the last two steps of this process.
This next story is called, “Bad References Always Surface”
“This candidate was perfect on paper and throughout the multiple interviews with our client. The client wanted to do the references themselves and asked for them in the final stage before an offer. The candidate supplied five of her very best references (of course) and ironically none of them had a recent or even past boss on the reference. (Um…red flag!??) When I asked the candidate to supply her references specific to a direct supervisor that could speak to her performance, she told me she had ‘had enough’ and wanted to be pulled from consideration”
What? How can you come this far and even think it’s ok to do that as a professional?
This last story is called, “My candidate went ghost rider dark”
“My candidate made it through every interview and passed both the background check and the reference checks. The client was drafting their offer letter. The candidate was on his way to a very successful job opportunity, but in the last minute decided to drop out at the tail end of the hiring process. I tried to reach out on several occasions to find out what happened, but unfortunately never heard from him and I had to move on.”
Piece of advice: Have the decency to call the recruiter back who was helping you get a job and explain the situation. You don’t have to worry about hurting their feelings, because this is the job of a recruiter. Treat your recruiter with the same level of respect they have shown you through the process. We know not every recruiter is going to do the best job for you, the candidate. But most of them will, especially if you are not an asshole.
All the recruiters who thought you were the one.