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From the mouths of recruiters – Part 1

It’s been more than a couple of years since I’ve run my own recruitment desk. And, while some job seeker advice is timeless (i.e. proofread your resume and dress for success), I wanted to share words of wisdom from Yoh recruiters who could provide the most current candidate recommendations, so I posed several questions to successful colleagues who have experienced recruiting across a variety of industry sectors.  More than one of these recruiters chuckled at my request to provide one tip or response to each questions as they had a wealth advice on each topic.  In addition, it was interesting to find reoccurring themes across some of the answers despite differences in the industries for which the recruiters specialize.  So without further ado, today I’m sharing the first segment of advice straight from the mouths of recruiters to you - if you have ever wondered what attracts (or detracts) the attention of a recruiter and/or hiring manager then read on, and I hope that some of these tips prove to be helpful!

Question:  What job searching tips do you have for candidates? 


  • Always network, as many opportunities are not found on the job boards.  Keep in touch with people that you worked with, go to Chamber functions and join associations that bring together people that are skilled in your profession.  – Kathy Pavlick

  • Stay open-minded, as there may be an area you never thought to explore professionally.  I’ve persuaded several candidates to interview for positions that they never thought they would be interested in, only to have them come back after the interview and want to start the position the next day.   – Jennifer Andersen

  • Do not embellish anything on your resume, as the hiring managers will find out.  Be confident in your abilities and know that you are not alone in your job search.  Talk to friends and network, you never know who you might meet who knows someone….who knows someone…who knows someone. –  Liz Kane

Question:  From your experience, what is the biggest mistake potential candidates do during their job search process? 


  • Many candidates fail to research the company for which they are interviewing; in order to make a good impression, it is critical that a candidate knows what the company is about as well as their mission statement. – Kathy Pavlick

  • Many people rush on resume preparation, and the resume is one of the two most important pieces to the job search!  Take the time to proofread, get input from others, and make sure the experience section is detailed; however, keep your resume to two pages in length or less.  Always include a summary on the top of the resume that reflects the job related experience pertaining to the position for which you are applying.   In addition, be careful not to jump at the first offer you get, it is very important that one ensure that the company, its culture and the job opportunity is what is truly desired.   – Lisa Flanagan

  • Being late and not being able to clearly articulate and explain one’s work history and responsibilities is a big issue.  – Liz Kane

  • A candidate not being honest or forthcoming about what they are looking for is the biggest mistake.  For example, a candidate may tell their recruiter that they are comfortable with a contract-to-hire opportunity, but then ask about permanent employment options in an interview with the client.  This makes everyone (both candidate and recruiter) look as though they did not prepare properly.  - Alexis

Question:  What is your number one piece of advice for job applicants? 


  • Be prepared.  Always show up on time and be immaculately dressed.  Also, be sure to know the job description and how it relates to your skills.  – Kathy Pavlick

  • Be realistic about your search and this means everything from the length of commute, salary/rate requirements, and the job responsibilities.  Be honest with recruiters with whom you are working about where you have been submitted / interviewed, and utilize both social media and personal networking to its fullest.  Finally, work only with a few trusted recruiters, and strive to build relationships with them.  – Lisa Flanagan

  • Put all relevant experience on your resume!  I have had so many applicants tell me that they were advised to keep their resume to only one page, only for me to find out they had extensive experience in the skill sets for which we were looking.  If keeping your resume to one page leads you to cut out information about your experience that is pertinent to the job you are applying for, then you may very easily get passed up without even receiving a phone call from the recruiter / hiring manager.  – Jennifer Andersen

  • Be yourself - you are interviewing the employer as much as they are interviewing you – don’t force the relationship.  – Liz Kane

  • Tailor your resume to each job you are applying for.  Make sure to thoroughly read the job description and take particular notice of specific requirements and preferred skills.  If you have that experience and qualifications, make sure that it is “front and center” on your resume!   – Alexis Henderson

Next time, I’ll share more recruiter advice on how candidates can stand out from the competition, what soft skills are essential for success and more.  If you have questions about your job search, anything from networking to interviewing and securing a new opportunity, let us know so we can share more relevant posts, advice and recommendations.

Check back with us for Part 2 soon!

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