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Starting the search for a new position – or even thinking about pursuing new opportunities – can be a big move that requires a lot of preparation. In every case, connecting with a professional recruiter can help make the process more efficient and fruitful for you.

 

While LinkedIn is typically a good place to start, finding a recruiter that’s an ideal fit for you is about more than simply connecting with a name. Once you establish a candidate, it’s good to have a one-on-one question so you can determine if a recruiter is the right one for you. Here are five questions to ask during that conversation to find out if he or she has your best interests at heart, possesses a knowledge of the field, and has the connections to find the right position for you.

 

Does your recruiter specialize in placing your specific skill set?

Once you select a recruiter, make sure you find out if, first and foremost, he or she has experience placing professionals like you. Holding specific knowledge about tech, for example, gives them much more insight into salary requirements and benefits others in the field may be offering than recruiters experienced more in general placement.

 

Does your recruiter have longevity and seniority within their company?

Everyone has to start somewhere, but ensuring your recruiter has some longevity in their position ensures they’re not starting with you. It also lends credibility to their industry knowledge and negotiating experience if they have some time in the field. Going with a green recruiter can mean your job search may take longer than you’d like.

 

Does he or she have any mutual connections with you?

Word-of-mouth truly is the best way to find a recruiter. If any of your mutual connections has worked with the professional you’re considering, they can give you insight into their experience. Make sure you ask around your network before landing on any one choice.

 

How involved are they in the process typically?

It’s essential to tap a recruiter who is with you every step of the way, from helping you build and review your resume to offering assistance as you prep for the interview, and finally as you stage an offer. It’s also helpful if they keep in touch after you’ve been successfully placed. That way you know it wasn’t simply a transactional relationship and is instead one you can return to when you’re ready to make another move.

 

How are their communication and sales skills?

Communication is always key. Having a large network is a plus, but you have to be able to trust that your recruiter will present you in the best light and act as a good middleman in the hiring process. You always want a representative that has strong negotiating skills that you’ll need during the offer stage.