Work With Me! Thoughts from a Recruiter on Best Practices

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 “The ability to form ongoing relationships with influential recruiters can prove more critical to your career success than any other networking outlet,” says Medical Science Liaison Executive Recruiter, Nihar Parikh. Here is some more essential information from Nihar to inform your working relationship with your recruiter.

How to Find a Recruiter

  • Make it easy for recruiters to find you. Your linked in profile should list your industry, various titles, skill sets, degrees and years of experience. Don’t be nuanced. You want LinkedIn searches to find you.
  • Ensure that your resume is the marketing document it is designed to be and highlights your experience, utilizes the right keywords, is formatted for easy reading and typo free. Generally, less is more. Make direct statements of skills, degrees and work experience and be honest, but sins of omission are permissible. Unfortunately, the reality is most people skim resumes and don’t read them in detail. Account for this human flaw and design your resume to take advantage of it!
  • Find a recruiter in your niche. The most important thing you can do is find a recruiter who works exclusively in your profession or industry, the more specialized to your role the better.

How to Assess a Recruiter


It’s a two way street. When being interviewed by a recruiter or even by a hiring manager you should both be exchanging information. Sure the recruiter is interviewing you but you are also interviewing them. Are they someone you want to work with that can add value to your career, your brand and represent you well? You’d be amazed how you can build a relationship by both giving information and asking for information. Let the information flow both ways!  Here are six key takeaways for assessing your recruiter relationship.

  1. They find job opportunities you otherwise would not know about.
  2. They provide insights into the job market.
  3. They review your resume with you and provide interview tips.
  4. Your recruiter negotiates higher compensation packages that better fit your priorities.
  5. They discuss your career goals and are frank about their viability/achievability.
  6. They are a career touchstone that will present you with opportunities for years to come.

How to Work with a Recruiter

  • Find a recruiter to work with before you need a recruiter.
  • Remember, recruiters do not work for you. They work with you but fortunately, for you, they are paid by the companies not the candidates.
  • Keep current detailed records of your applications. Keep a list of all applications you have submitted or have been submitted on your behalf by recruiters. The list should include; who submitted you, the date, the title, the company, which resume and any detailed information you provided like a cover letter of information. Be aware, once you submit your resume to any role at a company, a new recruiter may not be able to represent you at that company for a year or more.
  • Recruiters are not generally good at helping with a career transition. Recruiters may have helpful industry advice to share but they need candidates with on target experience, the career transitions are up to you!
  • Expect no feedback. Treat any feedback as a bonus and engage to get as much information as you can. It does not mean the feedback is correct, but try to understand the basis for it and perhaps you can proactively adjust for typical misunderstandings going forward.
  • Your recruiter should negotiate your compensation package. Do not let the negotiation of your compensation package wreck your job offer. You always have the final say on accepting or counter-offering but in a focused discussion with your recruiter you can let them know what you are targeting salary wise and other benefits like bonus or vacation time and what is most important to you. It is important not to get into any disagreements with your potential employer before you are on board. Use your recruiter as your proxy and work together to get the best package without emotions even having a chance of getting the better of you!

Interested in conducting a job search and need a recruiter?  Contact Smith Hanley Associates‘ Medical Science Liaison Executive Recruiter, Nihar Parikh at nparikh@smithhanley.com.

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