A few weeks ago, I went on a LinkedIn crusade for the sake of you - our readers and clients.
It was a long few weeks of hearing how no one was getting solid responses from reaching out to recruiters via LinkedIn or email, and this was starting to frustrate me as well. I decided to throw out a post asking recruiters, “what gives,” which you can check out by clicking here (also, feel free to add me as a connection!). Shockingly, I had over 200 responses within 24 hours, and it’s only fair that we share them with you!
The biggest tip we give to all of our clients is that applying for jobs should be as personalized as you can make it! This means don’t send out applications blind, don’t address cover letters ‘to whom it may concern,’ and always try to find a personal contact to start a dialogue with. The best way to do that is by connecting with recruiters with where they’re statistically spending the most time - LinkedIn!
Just check out these statistics we’ve recently come across from Expanded Ramblings. As of March 2018:
20,000 companies in the US use LinkedIn to recruit
There are currently 11 million open jobs on LinkedIn
94% of recruiters are using LinkedIn to vet candidates
InMail is 15% more likely to be read when you personalize the message
InMail is 21% more likely to be read when you share a group with the person you’re sending the message to
InMail is 27% more likely to be read when you reference a previous employer in the message
Remember that Recruiters are People
Even though these stats are impressive and definitely in the favor of job seekers, remember that everyone does operate differently. The preferences from recruiter to recruiter for connecting and reaching out also varies. There is no one-size fits all approach to networking - however, based on the response I received from LinkedIn recruiters, there are some best practices to keep in mind.
1. Never send messages to someone asking them to read your resume or review your profile, and have them get back to you if they have something that would be a good fit.
Phrases such as, “Hi, can you look at my profile?” or “Do you have any opportunities for me?” are a guaranteed way to never hear back from a recruiter. These people are not spending all of their times just doing you favors. They have jobs as well - and it’s your job to show them why you’re the best fit for a job! Recruiters are receiving as much as 100 messages a day, depending on their field. Don’t just ask someone to do something for you, without attempting to build an actual rapport and showcase a genuine interest in getting to know them.
2. Personalized care and genuineness need to go into every message you send.
The initial messages that you send should be short but still customized as much as possible (at the very least, add a name). Don’t just copy and paste the same message to a million different recruiters. You’re more likely to mix up information and names this way, and we also heard that they can definitely tell the difference between personalized and generic messages!
Following up with these recruiters is also key, if you haven’t heard from them after the first message. Don’t be afraid to reach out more than once. Sometimes these messages are getting lost in the inbox section of the LinkedIn platform, so it doesn’t hurt to try sending a message, an InMail, and connecting with a note attached.
3. You don’t need to wait until a job is actually open at a company to reach out to a recruiter.
If there is somewhere you’re dying to work at, start connecting with a recruiter within the company, and stay in touch so they remember you when something does come up. Try reaching out for general career advice or tips on how you can improve your presence. Ask them directly what they are looking for in a candidate!
4. It’s also important to not just blindly send a message to a recruiter if they have some other way of contacting them on their profile.
Always take a moment to look through their summary and profile information. Due to a large number of messages (or their lack of preference for the platform), they may have listed a better contact method via email or phone number in this area.
6. Make sure that you’re actually a qualified applicant for specific positions or a company before reaching out to a recruiter.
If you’re just reaching for jobs anywhere you can get them, your desperate attempts will become apparent, and you probably won’t ever hear back. Quality over quantity!
Don’t just reach out to any type of recruiter and hope they can help you. Make sure these recruiters are specifically working in the fields that you’re trying to land a job, and are hiring for those specific roles. Remember, recruiters are only getting paid by their clients to match them with the best candidates. If you are not a good fit (and you should know that based on your experience), then you may not hear back from these recruiters.
7. Join groups on LinkedIn and be active in comments and messages.
Recruiters are actually spending time in these groups, and they’re paying attention to who is responding often and who isn’t. Find groups related to your industry and recruiters will most likely be in there also looking for qualified candidates
8. If you’re not hearing back, don’t give up on sending messages.
They may not be the best recruiter to contact, and you may need to look for someone else to connect with, but there are good ones out there that really do want to help. A lack of response is also a good way to vet companies for yourself. If you’re not hearing back from a recruiter or hiring manager on LinkedIn at all, then that may be a sign that this isn’t the best company to work for.
We also heard that don’t be afraid to pick up the phone and call these recruiters unless they state specifically otherwise. Taking the time to find their phone number definitely shows that you made an extra effort.
Another reason you may not be hearing back from recruiters is due to a poorly built LinkedIn profile. If your profile is missing a lot of information or not filled out correctly, you’re missing a picture, or other flaws, then recruiters may be passing up on yo. To them, if you can’t put the effort here on your profile, then there’s no use in contacting you for more details on a great job for the company.
9. If you do hear back from a recruiter, then it’s also incredibly important for you to continue the conversation and keep following back up with them!
We also heard that recruiters are still actively responding or reaching out to people, but never hearing back from candidates themselves. Don’t fall into this trap! Overall, out of nearly 200 comments on my recent LinkedIn post, all recruiters agreed that good recruiters may take a little bit to respond, but they will message you back.
Now that you have all of this information - what do you do next?
First, check your LinkedIn profile to make sure it’s full, clear, and professional. If you’re not sure, reach out to us via email and ask us to take a quick look. We’ll let you know if we can help!
Second, make sure you’re signed up to our mailing list! See that little pop up that comes up on the screen when you visit our website? That LinkedIn Messaging guide has worked time and time again for our clients who have struggled with finding jobs in the past, and getting recruiters to respond. This is the template you need!
Third, watch our recent Facebook Live segment below where we went over more details about that LinkedIn post, and extra tips on how to improve your chances of landing a job faster!