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The time has finally come — you’ve applied to your dream job, waited patiently for a response from the recruiter and now you’ve just received an email about following up with you. How do you respond?
Or perhaps you have been contacted by a recruiter about a job that you didn’t even apply for, which happens most often on job sites like LinkedIn. How do you respond to a LinkedIn message or email about a job that you know nothing about? No matter what, getting contacted by a recruiter is an exciting moment. Someone has looked at your information and is ready to learn a bit more about you.
Now that you know what to think about as you read the rest of this article, let’s get into the nuts and bolts of how to respond to a recruiter’s email if you’re interested in the position.
You’ve signed up for newsletters and email lists for job sites and suddenly you are receiving recruiter messages that look like they’ve been sent out to a thousand candidates. You are probably asking yourself, “Are these real job opportunities? And if so, are they worth pursuing?”
Sometimes these types of emails can be spam, but a quick Google search or LinkedIn search will give you a lot of answers about the legitimacy of the company that’s contacting you. If the company seems real and has some reviews on Zippia or another company review site, then you can probably assume that the job position is real.
Sometimes the recruiter isn’t for a specific company, but a few companies. Look up the recruiter on LinkedIn first to see if they have a profile. You can also ask follow up questions about them if you decide to respond.
The next step is how to respond.
In this scenario, you’ve applied for a specific job and now you’ve been contacted about your application to begin the next steps. It might seem scary, but it’s great news. Every time you have a chance to speak more with a recruiter, you have the chance to solidify their impression of you as a great job candidate.
However, try and keep the conversation to scheduled times set by the recruiter. If the recruiter is asking you if you have time to hop on a call to discuss your resume, use the email response to lock-down time to talk to do so versus talking about how great your resume is in the email.
If the recruiter is asking for more details about you, you can answer via email, but offer up options to continue the conversation in a call if they’d be interested.
Generally, the first times you communicate with a recruiter don’t need to be novels. They are usually logistical correspondences so that you can get to the great conversations face to face or over the phone.
A recruiter will generally ask you two different types of questions: logical questions to plan out a meeting to go over your application or informational questions to add certain details to your resume. Sometimes, questions may be industry-specific, like a practice test or proficiency test on skills related to the job position.
Here are a few common questions recruiters will ask via email and sample answers of how to respond:
Let’s say you get contacted by a recruiter but you are not interested in the job. Should you ignore them or reply?
If you are contacted by a recruiter about a job that you didn’t apply to, it is polite to answer them, but if you have no desire to work for that company ever then it’s not required. However, if you have applied for the position and a recruiter emails you about the position, but you are no longer interested, you should reply.
Here are two examples of responding to a recruiter for a job you are no longer interested in:
Thank you for contacting me about my application to (company). Unfortunately, I have already accepted another position and am no longer an active job seeker. OR Unfortunately, I am no longer able to pursue this job position. I deeply appreciate your time in reaching out to me.
Thank you for contacting me about this exciting opportunity at (company). At this time, I am not seeking employment but I appreciate your offer to discuss this position.
Responding to recruiters can be a scary experience: you are so excited that you’ve finally made it to the next step but you don’t want to mess it up. Luckily, there are common questions recruiters ask when planning the next steps in the job hiring process and we’ve come up with some examples to help you craft great responses.
Now that you’re a recruiter response pro, get back to your inbox, fire away some replies and get one step closer to your dream job.
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