When using a recruiting agency during the job seeking process, it’s important to provide accurate and up-to-date information on a regular basis.  It’s also important to be aware of this when uploading resumes and cover letters to online resume banks such as Monster.com and CareerBuilder. As long as a job applicant is registered with a recruiting agency, he or she may be contacted at any time regarding a potential job opportunity. Methods of contact may vary, depending on the information a job seeker provides within his/her cover letter or resume. The preferred method of contact for the majority of recruiters is by phone and/or email, though a phone call most often made first.

Some things to expect when your phone rings (and a recruiter is on the other end):

  • You’ll likely be asked for more information including your ideal career path, current or most recent earnings, expected earnings and location preference.  You may also be asked if you’re currently employed and what type of position (permanent, contract, etc.) you prefer. When answering these questions, it’s crucial to provide accurate detail and be as honest as possible. At times, applicants may hold back because they’re unsure of how the recruiting process works, or simply don’t feel comfortable answering specific questions. The less information a recruiter has, the more difficult it is to match a seeker with a position; be thorough.
  • If you’ve registered with an agency, met with a recruiter face to face, and are waiting to hear back regarding potential opportunities, be aware that recruiters are doing their best to find great matches for you (based on the information you’ve provided.) This could be a quick process, or it could take longer than you’d hoped. Regardless, it’s important to be as patient as possible – and when the recruiting agency contacts you with a potential opportunity, ask questions and be honest about how interested you are in what you’re hearing.
  • Know your schedule. This is because recruiters contact candidates when a phone, Skype, or in-person interview is in the works with a client.  Know when you’re available so that interviews can be arranged quickly and easily – timing is everything!
  • If you are no longer looking but are contacted by a recruiter, it’s important to be understanding – perhaps you forgot to update your status with the agency, or you’ve neglected to remove your resume from online resume banks. Once you’ve updated your status with a recruiting firm, they will no longer contact you.

Originally posted on 5/15 @Times Union.