Give and Take: Trust and Working with Recruiters

Let’s be honest, we’ve all heard some serious horror stories from candidates who have had bad experiences with recruiters – maybe you’re one of them. Maybe you’ve had a recruiter misrepresent an opportunity, misrepresent you, or even misrepresent themselves. In any of these cases, the fragile trust relationship that is required during a hiring process will be broken. The more stories I hear, the prouder I am of the approach my team takes when working with candidates.

Last week I attended the Seattle Employee Engagement Roundtable event at the local Edelman office. The topic was centered around Edelman’s 2017 Trust Barometer which revealed that trust in institutions is at an all-time low, while trust in employees is at an all-time high. And how now more than ever, companies must tap into the employee voice and build trust from the inside out.

As always, I am riveted by the Edelman Trust Barometer and how the topic of trust continues to change and evolve every year. Every communicator should pay attention to these findings.

So of course, this got me thinking about what I do and how trust is essential in the world of recruiting. Any healthy relationship is founded on common expectations.

What should you expect from a recruiter?

 At Linsey Careers, we believe there are a few basics you should expect when working with us – and we commit to it every step of the way. Trust is an essential element to our success. We even have our code of ethics posted on our website.

Here are few things you should be guaranteed when working with a recruiter:

  • Your interest in switching jobs is absolutely confidential and should never be shared with anyone without your knowledge.
  • You receive accurate information about the company and opportunity to help you make an informed career decision. (Keep in mind, there may be information your recruiter doesn’t know simply because they’re not inside the organization every day. That’s why it is important for you to do your homework on the company and team, and ask questions throughout the process.)
  • You deserve to know where you stand. If you are no longer being considered, a good recruiter will let you know.
  • The recruiter is working for the company but should represent you accurately. Their goal is to achieve a win-win solution during the offer negotiation.

What should a recruiter expect from you?

It’s pretty easy to pile on recruiters who may have made the interview process frustrating, but there are a few things I request from candidates to build trust:

  • Be honest about your experience and career goals. There’s nothing worse than learning that a job is not a match because a candidate sold themselves into an opportunity they really didn’t want, or really couldn’t do.
  • Make sure the match is right. It’s up to you to tell me if anything feels off during the interview process. I’m not the one who has to get up and go to this job every day – you are. I can’t help you clarify concerns unless we communicate with each other.
  • Have an open and honest conversation with me about compensation: where you are and where you are trying to be? This isn’t a “fill in the blank” with a number scenario – talk through it in a confident way. Be honest with me and I’ll be honest with you. Why interview if the position doesn’t meet your financial needs?

As you begin a relationship with a recruiter (and yes, working with candidates is an opportunity for me to create a long-term relationship), get to know the firm’s process, how they work and who they work with.

Want to make it to that next exciting career level? Trust your gut…and your recruiter.