5 Recruiter secrets every job seeker should know

By Dominique Rodgers
Monster Contributing Writer

Professional recruiters have seen it all. They know how to spot the best candidates and match them up with dream jobs because they’ve waded through an ocean of awful candidates and terrible jobs first.

Think you’re gonna fudge your qualifications and put one over on them? You’re not.

Think you’ve found a unique trick to stand out from the crowd? They’ve seen it before.

Instead of reinventing the wheel, why not take these recruiter-tips to make your job search go smoothly?

First Impress the Robot

“Many job seekers don’t realize that busy recruiters and employers often utilize automated screening tools to analyze how closely a resume matches the job description. If there is not a strong correlation, then your resume may never actually be seen by a human,” says Bob Myhal, CEO of NextHire, a digital hiring solution.

To get past the software, use keywords from your industry on your resume. Use words that will correlate with job descriptions for the types of jobs you’re interested in.

Be Consistent Online and Off

Myhal also recommends keeping your resume consistent with any social media sites recruiters may check — and they will check. If the resume in the recruiter’s hand says you’re the vice president of marketing at Consolidated Widget Factory, but your Facebook says “marketing director” and your Twitter bio says you’re a “freelance consultant,” that’s bad and will raise all kinds of red flags about your skill level, your social media savvy and your honesty.

“Make sure your information across social networks is up-to-date and aligned with your resume,” advises Myhal.

Do Your Homework

When someone says to “tailor your resume to each opportunity,” they don’t just mean to be sure you’re addressing your cover letter to the right company. You should use social media and do some digging on your prospective employer, advises career coach Chris Delaney. “Dig deep and look up their values, beliefs and work ethic and relate to this in your application and interview. Interviewers often make decisions based on their judgement and commonality increases likeability.”

Quantify Your Accomplishments

A great way to make your resume stand out is to include a bit of quantification when discussing your accomplishments, says Erik Bowitz, Sr., a resume expert with Resume Genius. Explicitly state the size of budgets you controlled, how many people you managed, or the percent by which you reduced turnover. Bowitz prefers percentages and dollar figures “as they jump off the page and help your resume leave an impression.”

Check Back Every Week or Two

Great recruiters work to maintain a proactive pipeline. They’ll take your information even if you aren’t totally certain about leaving your old job or if they don’t quite have the right opening for you, on the chance that a perfect match will arise. This is all part of the plan.

“The best recruiters aren’t making arbitrary connections to meet a quota, but are patiently learning about the job seekers to place them in the right position,” says Patrice Rice, president and founder of Patrice & Associates, the country’s largest restaurant recruiting firm. “If a recruiter doesn’t come to you with a job offer right away, don’t be alarmed. The right opportunity probably hasn’t come up yet. But don’t be afraid to contact the recruiter every week or two so you remain fresh on their mind.”