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How to Properly Reach Out to a Recruiter

Working with a recruiter may be an unfamiliar process to many job seekers. Many people think that recruiters are always the ones who reach out to potential employees. While that may be common, how then, will a recruiter know about you? 

In fact, it’s perfectly acceptable to reach out to a recruiter for general job searching inquiries or even for specific postings.

Reaching out to a recruiter can be intimidating, but it can also be very beneficial, especially when the competition is tough. Follow these tips and guidelines for the best approach to contacting your local recruiter.

How Do You Reach Out to a Recruiter?

Understand How a Recruiter Works

A recruiter must understand each job position enough to find the right skills and capabilities. Then, they must convince the best candidate to accept a job offer when they’re the right fit. In this way, and because of many others, recruiters act as a salesperson, cheerleaders, coaches, and strategists to both job candidates and companies looking to hire.

Because of their busy roles, and the fact that they are managing roughly 50 candidates at a time, it’s important to reach out in a purposeful, targeted manner that will grab their attention.

Know Which Type of Recruiter You’re Working With

There are three types of recruiters, internal, external, and executive. Before you reach out to a recruiter, know which type you’re communicating with so you can make a relevant connection.


Internal recruiters are responsible for a specific area of the company. For example, a recruiter in the finance department will only be looking for candidates that are a good match for jobs in the finance department. Internal recruiters generally do not have a database that keeps past candidate information, so if you see a posting that you’d like to be considered for, you’ll have to apply, even if you have done so in the past. If you know a current employee at the company, that can be a great way to connect with the internal recruiter, as well.


External recruiters do not work for a specific company but tend to specialize in a few different industries. Depending on the recruiter, they may only specialize in one industry. External recruiters are often compensated by the quality of hires they match with a company. They are often hired by a company when internal recruiters aren’t finding the right candidates. External recruiters often have databases so reaching out to them can benefit your job search in both the short or long term.


Executive recruiters are only meant for VP-level or higher roles. They may recruit for positions that aren’t even posted.

Know How and When to Connect with a Recruiter

Once you’ve determined which type of recruiter you need to reach out to, here are a few tips to follow.

Be Buttoned Up

Don’t reach out to any recruiter for a job position until your resume and all social media profiles are cleaned up and updated. Do your research and be prepared to interview soon after you reach out. You should also know which industry or type of jobs the recruiter hires for. 

You’re Confident You Can Fill a Role

If you see a specific posting and you’re confident that you could be chosen for the role, it’s a great opportunity to reach out. If you can find the recruiter’s name (LinkedIn is a good place to search) personalize your email or letter. Include the specific job title when discussing your interest and attach your updated resume, cover letter, and any other helpful information. Briefly discuss your capabilities but leave the rest of the convincing to your attachments.

You’re Confident They Can Find You a Role

You can contact a recruiter without knowing of a specific job opportunity. If you know which industry the recruiter does work in, and it matches with your interests, go ahead and make contact. In this instance, your information may be put into a database if there’s not a position available that fits your skills and experience. If there is an opening, then you might be contacted. You’ll want to attach an updated resume and cover letter in this email as well. 

Since you’re not applying to a specific position, including what type of work you’re interested in doing in your email. You can list specific titles, companies, a geographic area of interest, and even a salary or pay range. Feel comfortable getting specific, but if you can allow a few different options, including those as well since the recruiter will have access to several different opportunities at any given time. 

Get Serious About Finding Your Next Job

If you’re ready to find the next right job for your career, contact Axiom Staffing Group.

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