Submitted by freeborn on
Question: Ought I let a contingency recruiter know my interest in a position before I apply?
I am exploring new opportunities. Following my substantive conversation with a recruiter he asked I "let him know what positions I like" and he would let me know if I am a good match and provide salary information.
This sounds like an odd arrangement enabling the recruiter to contact the potential employer before my application--and legally obligating the firm to pay the recruiter fee if I am hired.
Have you listened...
to the podcast on handling relationships with recruiters?
The cast details how to maintain control of your resume, while working with contingency recruiters.
Read: Rites of Passage
I'm no expert on recruiters, but I would recommend reading Rites of Passage, even if it's just the chapters on recruiters. A lot of it is geared towards senior executives, but it also provides a lot of basic information about how recruiters work and it does point out that early on in your career contingency recruiters can be very helpful in getting noticed.
The conversation you've described sounds similar to conversations I've had with a few recruiters lately. He is trying to fill as many positions as possible, and if you clue him in on ones you are interested in then it makes his job easier. He's being a bit lazy, but it's also not his job to go looking for positions for you... It's his job to fill as many positions as he can.
I don't think you have anything to gain by talking to him about positions you find, unless he has a contact with the company or some type of supplier relationship. If you're going hunting and you find a position, it's probably better for you to try and find someone you know in the company, or even someone who knows someone in the company. Use LinkedIn, it's great for that. If that fails, then you can either just apply through the web or seek out a recruiter who works with the company.
Proceed with caution.
If you are inclined to trust him, do so and see what he does. If he tries to get between you and the hiring firm, dump him and let him know so. If you are wondering what he might do when you let him know, tell him you would consider it unethical to do so.
Keep us posted.
Sent from seat 6b, aa flight aa753, lga-DFW.