1/29/17 - The Recruiter Wants Me To Rewrite My Resume -- Should I Do It?
I updated my LinkedIn profile and it's made a huge difference in my job search. I am employed but I'm looking for a better opportunity.
Two recruiters contacted me because of my new and improved LinkedIn profile. One of them was kind of a jerk. He demanded my salary information right away. I told him my salary target, but he said that wasn't good enough.
He said he needs to know what I'm earning now. I told him it wasn't a good fit and I got off the phone.
The other recruiter is awesome. His name is Mike. He has two job opportunities that may be a good fit for me.
We've talked on the phone twice and we're supposed to meet in person next week. Mike asked me to send him my resume and I did.
It's ironic because Mike told me he was very impressed with my LinkedIn profile, which I re-wrote in a human voice following your instructions a month ago. He liked the human voice in my LinkedIn profile well enough to contact me, but when he got my resume he said "It's too conversational."
When I sent Mike my Human-Voiced Resume he said his clients don't want to see resumes that use full sentences.
He wants me to re-write my resume in that zombie style that I just evolved out of a month ago. Should I do it? I firmly agree with you that only the people who get me, deserve me!
Congratulations on your re-branding and your new partnership with Mike!
A recruiter is a partner in your job search. You get to decide which recruiters to partner with, if you partner with any of them.
If Mike has strong relationships with his clients, then I recommend that you revise your resume and send Mike what he's looking for.
He knows his clients. Some employers are on the ball and excited to meet a candidate with a human voice in their resume, and others are not.
If Mike knows that his clients would love to meet the real Nora but would be freaked out to meet you via your Human-Voiced Resume, then follow Mike's instructions. If you trust his judgment, then it makes sense to go along with his instructions.
You are smart to think about how far you are willing to bend to get a new job. It's one thing -- a relatively minor thing -- to revise your resume in accordance with a recruiter's wishes.
However, what if the next instruction you get from Mike is to lower your target salary expectations?
What if Mike tells you that you have to take online tests and supply his client with free work in order to be considered for employment?
I hope at that point you will say "I like you, Mike, but I don't like you enough to lower my standards!"
Every job-seeker has to have a floor beneath which you will not sink. If you do not establish standards for your job search (and for any recruiter who represents you), you will waste countless hours and brain cells.
You don't need to contort yourself into pretzel shapes to get a job. The right employer -- and the right recruiter -- won't expect or require you to crawl over piles of broken glass to get a job.
You can make your expectations and requirements clear to Mike right now, at the beginning of your relationship.
You can tell him "Mike, I'll be happy to revise my resume and send you a version that uses sentence fragments, even though I don't like that communication style.
"I will be as flexible as I can in meeting with employers when it works for them, but I can't be all that flexible because I am working full-time. I know that you are dealing with me on one side of the desk and your client on the other side, but I need to let you know right now that I am not desperate. I have a job already. My brand is important to me, and the way I am treated during the recruitment process is extremely important to me, too."
Way too many job seekers submit to horrendous treatment from recruiters and employers because they think that's just the way things work. That is not the way things work!
No one can mistreat you during your job search without your permission.
Listen carefully to Mike's response when you tell him that you will disappear from his life and his candidate roster the minute you feel the chill wind of candidate abuse blowing in your direction.
Not all employers deserve you -- and not all recruiters do, either!
All the best to you --
Liz Ryan is CEO/founder of Human Workplace and author of Reinvention Roadmap. Follow her on Twitter and read Forbes columns.