How to Think Like a Recruiter

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Whether you’re writing your resume or going in for a job interview, you can maximize your chances of landing a great job by getting inside the head of the person from which you are seeking a job. Thinking like a recruiter helps you understand the needs of the person on the other side of the desk, and once you understand their needs you can better fill them as an applicant. Keep the following things in mind during your job search to get a recruiter’s attention.

– Value the recruiter’s time. Recruiters may have hundreds of candidates to evaluate when hiring. They are unable to spend much time on each application before making a final decision, so make sure you get to the point as quickly as possible in your application materials.

– Focus on relevant experience. Recruiters will be most interested in experience you have that is directly related to the position you’re applying for. Not all of your experience will be relevant, and you should leave out anything tangential to make more space for accomplishments that show why you’ll be a good fit in the position you want.

– Build a good network. Successful recruiters tend to have strong networks they can turn to. Often they know who they want for a position as soon as it opens up. As a job seeker, you should build a strong network as well. You may catch the eye of a recruiter, and if you develop a reputation as someone who can help others, you’ll find your job search process becomes much easier.

– Recognize that your application has multiple audiences and tailor it to each of them. At many employers, multiple levels of staff evaluate a job applicant. Lower-level employees wade through piles of resumes and put together a list of the strongest applicants to pass on to decision makers. People at the first stage of candidate evaluation often look for keywords and need simple, nontechnical language to understand what you do. People at the higher echelons of recruitment tend to be more interested in specific accomplishments and numbers-based achievements. Make sure you include something for both groups.

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