I spend a significant amount of time communicating via email with candidates to set up meetings/phone calls. I have a Recruiting Coordinator that sets full interview loops, travel, and phone screens with hiring teams (although sometimes I do this myself the RC is super busy or it is a management level candidate.) Generally I am responding to either employee referrals, LinkedIn outreaches, resumes I’ve sourced online, or direct applicants to my positions via our Applicant Tracking System (applications from our corporate website).
And I have found far too many examples of candidates, especially entry/early career stage, who don’t actually pay attention to what I am sending them. This is simply a lack of attention to detail.
It is frustrating when I send an email requesting a phone call with them and they don’t give me the information I need. (Please note this isn’t an auto-generated mail, it is coming from my email address and I fill in the info as needed in the subject line and name)
Here is my standard request for incoming candidates (those that have applied directly to our roles). The subject line is the company name – position title:
Hello *first name*,
I am a recruiter, and you recently expressed an interest in one of my openings. I would like to set up 20-30 minutes with you to go over your background, the process, any questions you may have, etc. Please reply with the following if you are still interested:
‘ The best phone number to reach you
‘ 2-3 times you would be available for a 30 minute call between 9-2:30 Pacific Time
90% of the time, if I get a quick response, candidates *don’t include a phone number.*
Here’s the thing: I don’t automatically ASSUME that the number on your resume is the best way to get hold of you.
Often candidates will reply asking "what job is this for?"
Candidates, you should be keeping track of what jobs you have applied for. If you have applied for multiple jobs at a company, *tell the recruiter* you have done so. "I have applied to three different software engineering positions with your company; can you tell me which team this is for?" You look disorganized, unprofessional, and desperate (looking for ANY job) when you don’t even know what job you are talking about. *Hint: most recruiters will have the teams/groups they recruit for in their LinkedIn profiles if not the actual JOBS they are recruiting for. I have both on mine.
Many times candidates don’t check their email, *including their junk folders*. If I try twice with no response, I will send a politely worded sytem-generated decline and the reason in the system is "Candidate Did Not Reply".
If you use multiple email addresses, CHECK ALL OF THEM WHEN YOU ARE LOOKING FOR A JOB. I have had more than one candidate create their account on our website with one email address, but they don’t used it anymore. Guess what? *That is the address we use, not the one on your resume, including offer letters. Login and update your email address if it has changed.
And the one that kills me: candidates that don’t apply with a resume. If you apply via a LinkedIn file, that is ok, *as long as you have a complete profile* that gives me the same level of detail as a resume, not just "company, title, dates" with no content. Again, you will get an auto-decline email.
It is a super competitive market out there. I have done everything I can to give candidates a chance to move forward with a job they have expressed an interest in; it is up to them to do their part.