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Handy Guide to Calling a Recruiter

Updated: Nov 30, 2021

People who call (and impress us) tend to get interviews. It’s as simple as that. We know it can be a bit nerve-wracking to pick up the phone. So in case you’re not sure of what to say, here is a quick guide to preparing for a call.

Things to know before you pick up the phone

First of all, be sure that you have read the advert thoroughly first; so you can be sure you aren’t asking questions we have already answered.

Secondly, if you are calling a recruiter, we generally can’t give you the name of the client (or the exact location) until you come in for an interview – this is to protect the privacy of our client, and to protect us from unscrupulous recruiters who will contact our clients (sadly, this actually happens).

Thirdly – make sure you have access to your diary/calendar and know what days and times you may be available for an interview – as we might book you in right away – be prepared!

Here is the way we envisage the conversation would go:

“Hi [person who answers the phone], I am [your name] how are you today?

I would like to ask you a couple of quick questions about the job for a (title) advertised on (date) through (website, word of mouth etc). [They may transfer you to the right person, or might be able to help you themselves – where possible – ask to speak with the recruiter]. Then you could ask us questions like this:

Can you tell me what the three most important things are that you will be looking for in the successful candidate?

Is there anything in particular that you would like me to address in my cover letter?

Is there anything else I can send along to support my application? (i.e. Portfolio, Certificates, Diplomas).

The call will probably then go one of three ways:

We might look at your resume right there and then, and possibly give you some bad news – but usually also some feedback about how to improve your application next time, or advice on the sort of roles you should be aiming for.

We might book you in for an interview.

We might need to take a message and get back to you.

It’s as simple as that!


Written by Jodie Perram, Founder + Director, Itch.

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