How to Reach Out to Recruiters on LinkedIn

Aug 2, 2021

6 Min Read

LinkedIn is a well-known global professional network with more than 756 million members in over 200 countries today. Moreover, it is a legit business platform where over 57 million companies advertise tens of millions of job postings.

LinkedIn offers job seekers the opportunity to job search, network, and build professional relationships. It also opens the door of opportunity for you to connect with the right recruiters that will help you define your career path.

Let’s now check out the roles and significance of recruiters and how you can effectively connect with them on LinkedIn.

The Roles of Recruiters

Recruiters are primarily tasked with filling positions for businesses. At the same time, they also play an advisory role for job seekers. They collaborate with you so you can confidently face employers. Recruiters guide you on:

  •  Interview étiquettes
  •  Salary negotiations
  •  Workplace culture and expectations
  •  Proper work attire

So when you’re job searching, you need to build relationships with recruiters.

Types of Recruiters

Here are the three most important types of recruiters you need to understand before deciding to work with any:

  •  Retainer-based Recruiters: Recruiters in this category act as a third-party consultant and charge a retainer fee upfront for a business. This process helps them find candidates in a quickBut, moree. More importantly, the candidates they seek are senior-level business people who meet specified job requirements.
  • Contingency-based Recruiters: The recruiters in this category are temp or staffing agencies hired to conduct a specific search for candidates to fill temporary positions. The positions they seek to fill often pay less than $100,000 per annum. As a result, contingency-based recruiters compete with other firms to select the right candidates to fill positions and only pay them when hired.
  • Corporate Recruiters: Corporate recruiters operate internally. Their roles include distributing job postings, sourcing candidates, screening resumes, shortlisting candidates, and presenting them to the hiring managers.

Why Connect with Recruiters on LinkedIn?

Based on Jobvite’s 2020 Recruiter Nation Survey, about 72% of recruiters prefer using LinkedIn to demonstrate and actualize their recruiting efforts. LinkedIn has also become a primary recruitment investment target for larger firms. So learning how to use LinkedIn effectively to be on recruiters’ radars can be helpful, whether you’re actively looking for job opportunities or not.

Who Should Connect with Recruiters on LinkedIn?

If you’ve been laid off or seeking a flexible work schedule, collaborating with recruiters will help you a lot. Your resume visibility for a given type of role increases as you work with recruiters. They know the companies that hire temps or permanent staff in your industry. They also know the salary and benefits such companies offer. If you need help with salary negotiations, they’ll guide you through.

Strategies to Connecting with Recruiters on LinkedIn

On LinkedIn, job seekers can connect with recruiters using both a passive strategy and a proactive strategy. The passive approach is effective when a job seeker has a completed SEO-focused profile with excellent visibility. Keywords heavily drive recruiters.

The proactive strategy is when a job seeker identifies recruiters who specialize in their industry, creates a clear message, and connects with them. In this sense, you already get the recruiter’s attention and proceed to build a professional relationship.

Passive and Proactive Tools

One of the most effective passive ways to connect with recruiters and leverage your LinkedIn profile is via the #OpenToWork function. The tool has the “Share with Recruiters Only” option. In addition, it notifies members who have paid access to the “LinkedIn Recruiter” service that you’re available for new job opportunities. With that, a LinkedIn member with an enabled #OpenToWork function (whose profile photo is enveloped by a green circle) becomes easily identified.

On the other hand, job seekers who are currently hired should approach this feature cautiously. LinkedIn safeguards your profile by preventing recruiters at your firm and related companies from seeing the open-to-work status on your profile. But it doesn’t guarantee complete privacy.

LinkedIn proclaims an advanced search experience from a proactive perspective and allows members to discover:

  •  Jobs
  •  Posts
  •  People
  •  Companies
  •  Groups in an organized, blended, filterable search results page

Connecting with Industry-Specific Recruiters Using LinkedIn Filters

Carefully select around 6-10 recruiters when preparing to reach out to them on LinkedIn. Avoid sending random connection requests to recruiters who don’t have any job opportunities in your industry or to jobs that don’t match your skills. Use a  laptop or tablet instead of a smartphone that might not offer all the options you need.

To find recruiters using LinkedIn filters, here are steps to follow:

  •  First, click on “My Network” from the home page.
  •  At the top left-hand column, click on “Connections.”
  •  Click on “Search with filters,” then at the top right, select the “All filters” box highlighted in blue.
  •  Choose 1st, 2nd, and 3rd connections in the pop-up box.
  •  Scroll down to the “Industry” section and select your industry of interest. It is necessary because you want to choose the recruiters that work with people in your career of interest.
  •  At the bottom of the box, scroll down to “Keywords.” Then, under “Title,” enter the keyword “Recruiter,” “Hiring Manager,” “Talent Acquisition,” or “Headhunter.”
  •  Click “Show Results,” then within your search results, click on the “Connect” button of each recruiter you want to connect.
  •  Use the “Add a Note” option to send a customized message to your recruiters.

In addition to your 1st connections, the search results will automatically provide you with the names of other people in your network who may look familiar to you. Also, be free to ask your connections for an introduction.

How to Message Recruiters on LinkedIn

Many recruiters get short and vague messages via LinkedIn every day. Professionally, let your message be similar to an email – not like a WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger message. From your message, you should be able to describe skills you’ve got, tools you use, and projects you’ve carried out.

Your message must also specify the same job posting you’re referring to and its requirements. With that, the recruiter will realize you’ve done your research, understood the requirements, and see how you meet the requirements.

Make your message intentional when customizing it. For example, you should know whether you’re connecting to build a relationship or fill a position because you already know you’re a good fit for it.

A Template for Messaging Recruiters on LinkedIn

One of the effective ways to messaging recruiters on LinkedIn is the ability to introduce yourself briefly. In the process of messaging recruiters, add the following in all InMail messages:

  •  I recently applied to the [NAME OF POSITION] concerning requisition number [ADD NUMBER]. It helps recruiters locate the role in their applicant tracking system.
  •  I meet the qualifications needed for the [NAME OF POSITION] and [NAME THE TOP QUALIFICATIONS].
  •  According to my research, I believe this is the position you are working to fill. If you are not the assigned recruiter for this position, can you connect me with the recruiter? (This approach will keep the conversation in progress. With your requisition number, the recruiter will find the recruiter assigned for the position and deliver your message).

A Sample of What Your Message Should Not Say

Hi Dean,

I notice you’re an IT recruiter and would like you to help me find a job. I have comprehensive experience in IT and would fit any role that you might have.

Please call me! I would be glad to discuss my extensive experience with you.



Wrapping it Up

While LinkedIn continues to be a go-to professional social media platform, it’s also used regularly by recruiters worldwide. So, are you a job seeker? If yes, complete your profile and use the LinkedIn tool ─ #OpenToWork. The tool will make recruiters reach out to you when conducting a search or making their recruiting efforts.

When job seekers are connecting with recruiters on LinkedIn, they need to have realistic expectations. Recruiters won’t treat you as a priority if they aren’t looking for someone with your skills. Don’t take it personally. Instead, admit it’s a part of relationship building. Why not just consider it an investment where you don’t expect quick returns, and move on!


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