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Dealing with professional recruiters or 3rd party hiring professionals is not easy, especially if they are armed with sneaky tricks and practises. I have 10 of the more common red flags and how to spot them.
misleading job descriptions
This is one of the most common
forms of abuse.
Hiring professionals who post a job description
for a legitimate position for a client, but spruce
up some of the information to entice
For example, a recruiter will inflate the
salary/compensation portion of the job
description or inflate the job responsibilities
while dumbing down the job requirements.
So , if you are at selection stage , ask for the
original Job description to double check.
decoy-and-switch job descriptions
Hiring Professionals who advertise jobs that
do not exist or are already filled
just to receive resumes from job seekers that
they can add to their database.
This is very similar to a tactic that real estate
brokers use to lure potential buyers.
# 3 Cold calling and pressuring low level employees
Hiring professionals who call low
level employees at a company and
pressure them to pass the caller
along to a hiring manager at the
This is the poorest of business
development skills but not
uncommon with desperate
professionals who need to meet
their recruiting targets.
# 3 Cold calling and pressuring low level employees
Pressuring job seekers into interviews
Pressuring a candidate into interviews
that they don't want to go on tends to
happen when you deal with recruiters
under target pressure or time stress to
present suitable candidates.
Sure, job seekers should stand up to
them and say, "I’m not interested in that
job" but when a recruiter responds, "I'm
not going to put you in front of
<company> unless you go to this
interview," job seekers may give in.
So if you encounter this sort of situation
back away, it’s not a job opportunity!
Recruiting the referees
of a job seeker
Hiring professionals who request
references from job seekers and
recruit those references
Later, job seekers learn from their
references that their recruiter
pressured them for resumes to send
to clients, sometimes for the exact job
the original job seeker was up for!
Particularly popular practise with
‘rookie’ hiring professionals, so be
careful not to disclose your references
Faking a relationship
Recruiters will hear that XYZ PTY, a company they have no relationship with, is hiring.
Instead of approaching XYZ PTY about working for them, the recruiter will solicit
resumes from potential job seekers for exciting new openings at XYZ PTY.
The recruiter will then approach XYZ PTY with the resumes they have.
If XYZ PTY rejects the recruiter, the recruiter will then tell the job seekers that XYZ PTY
said there wasn't a fit for them. Fake from start to finish.
Sending false offer letters
Recruiters who reach out to job
seekers with fabricated emails or
contact calls for alleged
opportunities with companies
they're having trouble getting
These recruiters will act quick to
present you to that company once
If the company likes the candidate,
the recruiter makes sure to process
and negotiate the offer, sometimes
issuing a "revised" offer to the job
If there is not a fit for the job seeker at the company, the recruiter is no worse
off than when they started, and they just drop all contact with a job seeker.
Rookie hiring managers will promise a job
seeker that they will not submit other job
seekers for the same position as long as the
job seeker agrees not to talk to any other
The rookie then submits multiple
competing job seekers for a position,
because that’s how he earns his money.
If one is rejected, he tells that job seeker
that the company decided there wasn't a fit
and continues to send him to other
Genuine hiring professionals don’t offer
exclusivity as it is un-real and does not
Promising exclusivity to job seekers
Discrediting an employee's current company
Hiring Professionals with poor ethics will
contact an employed potential candidate
and tell them that their current company is
in a precarious financial state and offer to
find the employee another job.
They will even do this to employees of
their own clients.
Don’t be alarmed, just be alert and if you
encounter one of these – steer clear!
When a company sends an offer to
a job seeker, some recruiters will
tell the job seeker that they
only have X days (where X is usually
1 or 2) to accept the offer.
Otherwise, it will be rescinded.
This practice is a bit more rare
because job seekers and companies
know each other by this point,
but I do hear of this happening.
Don’t allow anyone to stress you for
a signature. Take your time and
remember when you are job
seeking to hunt wisely !
Simulating expiring offers