How to Respond to Recruiters on LinkedInIt’s no secret that LinkedIn is THE world’s largest and leading professional networking and job posting website utilized today. Not only is it beneficial for candidates who are searching for jobs, but also for recruiters to seek out potential talent and make professional connections. Often times, individuals overlook these messages thinking they are automated spam to your inbox. It’s important to remember, there is a human on the other side of these messages, so take the time to reply with a well-drafted response.

Recruiters are on LinkedIn to make your job search easier. And there are certain ways to respond to those recruiters once you get the notification of a private LinkedIn message (InMail). When you receive a message, you may be conducting a passive or active search or maybe you’re not looking at all. The most important thing to remember is, regardless of where you are in your job search, you’re making a professional connection. It’s a recruiter’s job to take time to find qualified candidates for their clients, so as a professional courtesy always respond promptly, interested or not.  

If a recruiter messages you about a specific company, industry or even a position that speaks to your experience and expertise, they’re doing so for a reason – they’ve found your LinkedIn profile impressive! You never know, they could be reaching out regarding an organization or job that you have been eyeing. On LinkedIn InMail, if a recruiter messages you about an opportunity you will be given the option of replying with an automated response – “No thanks” or “Yes”. You then can tailor your reply to what you want to further say.

1How to respond if you are interested in the role:

If interested, you should respond right away. Allow yourself to learn more about why the recruiter took the time to reach out to YOU. Also, keep in mind that simply responding to a message doesn’t indicate that you are applying to any role. A fluid conversation with a recruiter will allow you to provide information about yourself and your career goals and needs, and your genuine interest of the opportunity. If you do decide to set up a time to talk over the phone, have a copy of your resume in front of you so you are ready to discuss your background and qualifications. You can also prepare questions to ask the recruiter about the role. What are the responsibilities, salary, location, company culture, etc.?


How to respond if you are not interested in the role:

If you are not interested in the job, that’s okay…really it is! However, give the recruiter the same courtesy they’ve given you. Take a minute to thank the recruiter for reaching out. Provide a brief explanation of why this position may not work for you and/or let them know the type of positions you are open to. If the timing isn’t right, that’s not to say that at some point down the road, the timing might be right or there could be a more viable role. With that being said, do not completely cut ties with the recruiter…they can help you in the future! You can send them your resume to keep for any future opportunities. Also, you may know of someone like yourself that could benefit from connecting with the recruiter.

How to Respond to Recruiters on LinkedIn 1Regardless of the outcome, LinkedIn is all about building a professional network. If a recruiter does reach out to you, it’s good news! They could potentially match you with a new amazing career opportunity. I strongly advise you to answer recruiters when they message you, develop professional relationships with them, and keep an open mind.


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