A good friend of mine was laid off of his job of 10 years and is searching for new employment. He has a complete LinkedIn profile with contact info and resume (thanks to me) and is on Monster and CareerBuilder.
He got a call last week from a local recruiter at a niche staffing firm. On the phone the recruiter told him he had a ‘couple’ of jobs for him, and they arranged to meet. My friend has an interim job so he had to arrange time off to meet this recruiter.
Upon arrival at the office, my friend notices at least 7 people in the waiting room. A very busy day there? No, said the recruiter, who bragged that they interview about 75 people each week. Hmmm…
During the interview, one of the first things the recruiter asked for was his resume. Not strange in itself, is it? But the recruiter then went on to say he hadn’t yet seen his resume and that’s why he asked for one. So my friend asked where the recruiter found him, since there are only 3 options and all 3 have his resume uploaded. The recruiter said he couldn’t remember where he had found him.
Strike one against the recruiter.
After the recruiter read my friend’s resume, in front of him while he waited, the very next question was, “Do you know anyone else in product marketing that you can refer to me? We’re big on referrals here.” This put my friend off, since it made him feel as though the recruiter wasn’t interested in HIM, only in who he knew.
The next question from the recruiter was, “Are you currently interviewing with any companies? I’ll need to know who.” In fact, my friend IS in the final stages of the interview process with a company, and since he and I have talked at length about the world of recruiting, he gets it that the recruiter wants to make sure that if he presents him to a client, he won’t go off the market tomorrow, but the way he asked, and the point at which he asked the question (before he even asked about his qualifications and achievements) was very off-putting. So he refused to answer.
Then the recruiter, who showed his unhappiness with my friend’s refusal to talk about his other job prospects, went on to perform the requisite interview and Q&A. Then my friend asked about the ‘couple’ of jobs the recruiter had in mind for him. The recruiter replied, “I don’t have anything for you right now, but we always bring candidates in to meet them face to face because that’s what our clients expect of us.”
Need I say strike four for wasting the candidate’s time and misleading him?
Still, my friend persevered instead of walking out. The next thing the recruiter said to him was, “If you’re looking at job postings and see one that you like, don’t apply to it. Instead call me and I’ll call that company and try to get them to interview you.” My friend isn’t stupid and knew that the recruiter was saying that he was going to ‘use’ him to try to gain a new client. That might be good for the recruiter’s bottom line, but it totally screws my friend and could prevent him from getting a job on his own.
Strike, um, what number are we at? Oh yes, five.
The finale was the recruiter taking my friend on a ‘tour’ of the office. No, not to meet other recruiters who might work with him, but to show him the ‘bullpen’ where there were 10 people sitting in small cubicles with headsets on, ‘dialing for dollars.’ I guess the recruiter thought seeing a cold-calling operation was going to make him feel good about his chances of employment.
The parting comment from the recruiter was a double-whammy: “Thanks for coming, and don’t forget those referrals! And call to check in with me every week or so, so I don’t forget you.”
Strike seven and he’s way OUT!
So the next time you’re bringing in 20 candidates a week to meet an interview quota, or are told to push for referrals because they’re the best way to uncover good candidates, or are too lazy to print out a candidate’s resume, or anything else this recruiter did, just remember my friend and this unlucky 7 recruiter!