There are a lot of benefits to using a staffing agency to find a job. Candidates can apply for multiple jobs with just one application. Recruiters give candidates access to industries they might not have considered or realized they had qualifications for. But like with traditional employers, it’s all about putting your best foot forward. Don’t make these common mistakes when trying to partner with a staffing agency.
1. Somebody’s Watching Me
Social media has changed the world in ways people couldn’t imagine just a few decades ago. But these tools for staying connected have pitfalls.
A recruiter who comes across your resume online can find out a lot about you in just a few minutes. Make sure what they find is flattering. If it isn’t, they won’t feel comfortable passing your information along to clients. A contact email address with explicit references or a Facebook photo showing alcohol is not going to make a good first impression.
Luckily you can change your social media profile image in a few clicks. You don’t need to have a professional photo taken. Take a selfie in front of a neutral background, and focus the photo only on your face.
If your personal email address is off-color, change it. Register a second account with a free service like Live, Gmail, or Yahoo. Create a neutral email address to use on your resume. Give this address to agencies who want to email you application or job information.
2. Check, double-check, recheck, check again!
Recruiting a good candidate takes time. Recruiters sift through lots of resumes and leave lots of voice mails. They conduct interviews to match the right candidate to the right job. And when they find the perfect candidate, they still have a lot of work to do. Gathering work histories. Filing government-mandated IDs. Running background checks. Collecting banking details so a candidate can receive his or her first paycheck.
The fastest way for a candidate to get to that first paycheck is to follow directions…and to double-check them.
If you have a skill set that perfectly matches an open job, the recruiter won’t be able to see it if you don’t send the correct resume. So double-check your attachments. Even If you think you attached the right file, check it again. Recruiters commonly receive blank or incomplete resumes, or unrelated personal information. One recruiter received a copy of the candidate’s cell phone bill.
Make sure you re-read any requests for information sent by a recruiter. A candidate who was asked for a copy of his photo ID didn’t double-check the recruiter’s email and missed the word “ID.” So instead of sending a photo of his driver’s license, he sent a selfie.
Not following instructions makes a poor first impression. It also slows down the application process. That means you’ll get your first paycheck later rather than sooner.
3. Stay In Touch…But Not Too Much
Staying in touch with a staffing agency is great. It shows that you’re motivated. It also makes it easy for a recruiter to reach you about an available job.
But staying in touch doesn’t mean calling and emailing multiple times a day. Staffing agencies want to get you working. But businesses sometimes push back the start date for a job, or change their minds about the skill set they need. These setbacks are beyond the recruiter’s control. Contacting them repeatedly won’t improve the situation. It will only take away time that he or she could be spending getting you placed in another position.
4. Keep Calm And Carry On
Lots of job seekers submit resumes to sites like Monster.com and Spec Personnel. These are great ways for recruiters to connect with talented candidates. Expect to hear from them! If you get an incoming call from a phone number you don’t recognize, it might be a recruiter.
Be ready to make a good first impression. Don’t assume it’s a nuisance call and answer in a hostile or suspicious tone. Don’t accuse the person of being a telemarketer before they’ve had a chance to identify themselves and explain why they’re calling.
Staffing agencies serve both businesses and job seekers. As mentioned above, sometimes clients withdraw or change the timing of an open position. If this happens to you, don’t panic.
If you keep your cool, the recruiter will find other work for you. Don’t accuse the recruiter of wasting your time on purpose or of trying to scam you. If you do, they won’t call you again, and a future job offer that might have been perfect for you will disappear.
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