How to Reach Out to a Recruiter on LinkedIn
Discover effective strategies for job seekers on LinkedIn. Maximize your chances of connecting with recruiters and find out how to reach out to a recruiter on LinkedIn the right way.
In today's competitive job market, it's important for job seekers to make the most of every tool they have. And when it comes to places to search for a job, LinkedIn definitely takes the lead. With over 930 million users, LinkedIn is like a common ground where professionals connect and find new job opportunities.
Using this platform effectively can open up some amazing opportunities. But here's the thing: knowing how to successfully reach out to recruiters when you're looking for a new job and need their help is the real key.
There's this common myth going around that recruiters are basically gatekeepers, rejecting candidates for the tiniest details on their resumes and blocking them from speaking with hiring managers.
Some people actually believe that recruiters, with their evil applicant tracking systems (ATS), just pick candidates based on personal preference and reject everyone in less than six seconds. That 3 out of 4 resumes never get seen by a recruiter or many other myths. It's crazy, right? I've heard so many wild stories about recruiters, it's mind-boggling!
Let me tell you, nothing makes a recruiter happier than finding the right candidate and filling the role within a few days. We're cheering for every candidate we bring into the process and hoping for the best. You'd be surprised how much recruiters are fighting for their candidates - these are the things you wouldn't typically see or hear.
All those "job search gurus" out there are trying to paint us as the enemy so that they can sell their ATS robot-proof resume templates to candidates. But honestly, all we want is to find an amazing candidate to fill the role.
I mean, let's be real...rejecting candidates is not exactly the fun part of the job (trust me on this!). But here's the thing: many candidates apply for a job without meeting the requirements — it's just a fact.
If a company is after someone with five years of experience for a senior role and you only have one, or if they're looking for someone who will be based in London and you're in sunny Sydney looking for a remote gig, well, chances are you'll face rejection.
It sucks, but hey, it's a fact of the game, and we're all facing the same issues whether you're a recruiter or not. A lot of my recruiters’ friends are currently on the job hunt, and just like any other candidate, they're experiencing the same issues.
If you're wondering how to "skip" the application process and get your foot in the door, one option is to reach out to a recruiter at the company you're interested in. But remember, doing it right is the key!
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How to Reach Out to a Recruiter on LinkedIn
Developing strong and meaningful professional relationships with recruiters can greatly improve your job prospects, both now and in the future. By building a solid connection with recruiters, you not only increase your chances of finding suitable job opportunities but also create a valuable network that can support your career growth and provide helpful insights and guidance along the way.
The LinkedIn Profile: Your Virtual Business Card
A LinkedIn profile without a profile photo and an incomplete profile won't just hurt your job search, but it'll also lower the chances of a recruiter helping you when you ask for it.
Your LinkedIn profile is the first thing they’ll check right after you reach out to them, so it’s important that it’s full of relevant information about you and your professional career. If you're looking for a new job, one of the first things you should do is aim for that All-Star status on LinkedIn! It can really make a difference.
When a recruiter sees your LinkedIn profile, they're looking for specific signs of your professional worth. A well-organized LinkedIn profile, using keywords related to your field, recommendations, and even a portfolio, if you have one, can leave a powerful first impression.
Recruiters can help job seekers in many ways, like giving insights about a company's culture, sharing job postings, and offering guidance on tailoring applications to specific roles. But remember, not every recruiter is a career counselor or resume writer, so expecting them to review your resume for free might not be their cup of tea. It's important to approach them with the right expectations!
Common Mistakes When Reaching Out to Recruiters
LinkedIn can be incredibly valuable, but there are a few common pitfalls that job seekers often stumble into when reaching out to recruiters. One of them is sending generic, mass-produced messages.
You know, those messages that start with "Dear NAME, I am looking for new opportunities. Please check my profile." Yeah, those might get ignored because they come off as impersonal.
Every week, I get tons of job requests via inMails, and let me tell you, about 80% of them are generic! Here are a couple of examples I'd love to share with you, so you know what not to do and what you should do instead.
LinkedIn InMail Examples
The subject line is just as important as your message because it's visible along with your message. So, if you use "CV" as a subject line but there's no CV attached, it's better to choose something else.
Here's an important thing to remember: you don't necessarily need to send your resume separately, as your LinkedIn profile serves as your resume.
Don't forget to check the location of the recruiter and their industry. Otherwise, you'll just be wasting your time. For instance, if the recruiter works for a company exclusively in Marketing and is based in Germany, they won't be of much help if you're looking for a job in Spain's Petrochemical industry.
Asking the recruiter to recommend your profile to other recruiters in their network? Yeah, that's not gonna work. I mean, think about it. Would you recommend someone you don't even know and risk losing your own credibility if that person does something crazy during the interview process? No, probably not.
It's actually better to ask for some names of people you can reach out to or maybe some tips on how to improve your chances and not just for an introduction.
Typos, typos, typos
Nothing kills the first impression like typos. So, before you hit send, make sure you have the right name. Using the first name usually works better than the full name.
Also, if you share a message full of typos like "AM A DITAL MARKETAR DATA ANTRY", you're not presenting yourself as the right candidate.
You can use tools like Grammarly or the free Chrome Extension Linguix to review your messages before you hit enter. They'll help you make sure everything looks good before you send it out into the world!
If you are a ChatGPT fan, you can askChatGPT to “Check grammar” or “Correct grammar.”
Prompt Example: Check grammar: Your Text
When you reach out to a recruiter, whether it's through inMail or email, remember to be specific. It's great to mention that you're a graphic designer, but they can already see that on your LinkedIn profile.
Instead, let them know what job you're looking for or what you need from them. It's surprising how many candidates say "Hello" or "Hi" and wait for a response, even for weeks.
Make sure you are specific about the job you're looking for because if you send a generic message like "Accounting-related job" and leave your LinkedIn profile blank, recruiters won't be able to guess what you want.
They would rather spend their time replying to candidates who directly apply for a job instead of exchanging messages with someone who sends them this kind of message.
Cultivating Professional Connections: The Right Way to Reach Out
Before you reach out to a recruiter, research the company and the recruiter's role within it. Your message should reflect your knowledge about the company and express your interest in it.
An ideal outreach message structure might look like this:
Introduction: Greet them and briefly introduce yourself.
Context: Mention how you found their profile or explain any common connections.
Purpose: State your reason for reaching out, perhaps referencing specific roles you're interested in.
Value Proposition: Briefly outline what you bring to the table.
Call to Action: Politely ask if they have time for a brief chat or a call, keeping it low-pressure and respectful.
You can totally create your message in a different way, so this example below is just an example:
Hello [Recruiter’s Name],
I have been following [Company Name]’s work for some time, and I am particularly interested in your recent project on [Specify Project/Role/Initiative]. With my background in [Your Expertise/Area], I believe I could contribute significantly to similar initiatives.
In my current company, I am responsible for [Add specific information related to the role you are interested in - Quantify your accomplishments that leave a strong impression].
Would it be possible to have a brief chat at your convenience to discuss any current or future opportunities?
Thank you for your time,
Note: You can replace “I am particularly interested in your recent project on [Specify Project/Role/Initiative].” with “I am really interested in working for your company.”
You can create your own using ChatGPT prompts or simply by following the five easy steps of the ideal outreach structure. It’s really that simple, and it’s better than those examples above.
Building for the Future
Remember, developing professional relationships with anyone is a marathon, not a sprint! Sending a well-crafted outreach message is just the starting point. It's important to respect the recruiter's time, be patient, and most importantly, not let lack of response or rejection discourage you.
Even though I try my best to respond to everyone who reaches out to me on LinkedIn, I can't help everyone. However, I hope this guide will assist many candidates out there in approaching recruiters or managers in the right way and opening doors for them.
In the world of job searching, these connections with recruiters and hiring managers can open up some amazing opportunities, now and down the road. So, stay persistent, keep it professional, and keep networking!
Effective LinkedIn Outreach Templates
Here are three templates I'm sharing with my clients who hired me to assist them in their job search. They should be customized to match each candidate's specific profile.
However, I must mention that these templates have been proven effective over the years, resulting in a 26% higher response rate compared to the generic templates they were using and found on the internet.