The Top 3 Ways To Annoy A Recruiter – And Lose Out On A Job!

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stewingOnce you apply to a position, your resume will most likely be sent to a recruiter.  It’s important to know how to work with recruiters because they can be a powerful ally in helping you land your dream job or they can prevent you from being considered for a position all together.

This should be something that is easy to do and logical, but I am still surprised by how many candidates fail at this and never make it to the interview stage.

Here are the top ways to annoy a recruiter:

There is no contact information on your resume or it’s incorrect.

When I was working as a recruiter for a large company I would get at least 1 resume a month from an employee who was referring a friend to a position and that resume didn’t have any contact information on it.  I would automatically delete those.  I figured that if someone can’t put their contact information on their resume they weren’t worth our time!

And even more common than that is that sometimes candidates would put incorrect email addresses or phone numbers on their resume and then when I would try to reach out to them I couldn’t.


Make sure your contact information in on your resume and that it’s correct.  A recruiter could be trying to reach out to you about your dream job and the opportunity to make more money, but you will never know about it if we don’t have your contact information!

Aggressive follow up.

While I think it’s a good idea to follow up with a recruiter some candidates take this to a whole new art form!

I once had a candidate call me 6 times in 2 hours.  When I was finally able to take his call, I asked him if there was some sort of an emergency – because that’s the only reason that he would need to call me that many times in 2 hours.

He quietly said there wasn’t and got off the phone with me very quickly.  And that’s not an isolated incident, as I have had a fair number of candidates call me multiple times in a day.  Once that starts to happen I would inform the manager and we would drop the candidate from consideration.

We would do this because hiring someone takes time and if we have one candidate who is constantly following up with us that person becomes too time consuming to deal with.  And then we start to wonder when this person gets hired are they going to need this much attention to do their job?  The red flags get raised and the candidate has now presented themselves as a risk.


If you want to follow up with a recruiter or hiring manager simply ask, “if I don’t hear back from you within a week is it all right if I give you a call or send you an email.”  Most of the time everyone will say yes!  And if they don’t they will say something like, “try us in 2 weeks.”

And when you follow up if the recruiter or hiring manager still doesn’t have an answer for you for where everything is in the hiring process ask the same question again.  Eventually you will get your answer and they will respect that you are not taking up their time.

Attitude is everything!

Every once in a while we deal with candidates who are stubborn, uncooperative, or just downright rude.  I once had an employee refer a friend of his to me and this candidate seemed to think that I worked for him.

He wasn’t a fit for the position I had open, but as a favor I told him that if he tailored his  resume to more accurately match the job description that I would send his resume over to the hiring manager.

He became very combative with me and told me he didn’t understand why he had to do that and that he wasn’t going to do that.  Then started telling me to name all the positions that I thought he might be a fit for and to send my resume to those hiring managers.

Once we got off the phone I called one of the hiring managers to tell him about the candidate that was just referred to me and why I didn’t think he fit into our company’s culture.  The manager agreed with me and we never considered him for another position.


Be nice to your recruiter and let your attitude shine.  Did you know that many times when a recruiter has a great conversation with a candidate that is one of the first things we tell the hiring manager?  People will always choose a really good candidate with a great attitude over an excellent candidate with a poor attitude because once they hire that person they could be working with them 5 days a week for years to come!

By Ryan Fisher