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  • Dear Justy,

    I don’t understand recruiters. I get calls every so often from recruiters whom I have never spoken to before but they tell me I would be great for a search they are doing. The jobs they talk about often sound fantastic so I send my resume to the recruiter…and never hear from them again.

    Huh? Haven’t they heard of a little something called courtesy?  What’s their game?

    Your advice please,

    Left in the Dark

    Dear Left Dark,

    Your frustration is not new, I am sad to say. I commonly hear from frrrrustrated lawyers that recruiters don’t follow up or get back to them, and never update them as to applications. I know some who do however. Unfortunately I fear that those ‘good guys’ are in the minority in an industry where the average recruiter doesn’t last more than a couple of years and has zero work experience and almost the same life experience.

    You however need to take some responsibility. Some guy calls you, dangles a juicy job in front of you and you send your resume? Just like that? If you are acting so free and easy with your information, then these recruiters you speak of are likely treating your CV and time in the same manner – free and easy. I know of one case – and it’s not that rare – whereby a recruiter sent an individual’s CV to firm client without permission. The individual and the law firm heard about it from the client. And another case where a CV was sent to a Managing Partner who happened to be the best friend of the lawyer’s Partner. Good luck trying to explain that.

    Sure, they should let you know what happens with your application however the onus is also on you to know where your information is going at all times.

    You are a lawyer, you have research capabilities. Do some basic due diligence! Does the recruitment firm have a website (and not just a template place holder)? Is the recruiter you are speaking with on the website or is he/she just a body in a huge organisation and maybe just passing through? Does the recruiter have an online profile, or at least a LinkedIn profile with referrals and information that you can verify? Crazy thought: why don’t you meet him/her and listen to your instincts? Does the recruiter know anything about the market or is the recruiter just good at bullshit? I had a recruiter once tell me that I would be perfect for a Wall Street firm and I could definitely make Partner there. That sure sounded good but I had to honestly ask myself “is that realistic?” Thereafter, everything that recruiter said to me made sense; his motivation was to serve himself in the short term.

    Sure you need to take a (small) leap of faith in trusting a recruiter who cold calls you. However do yourself a favour and at least do what you can to check someone out before you fling your resume out willy-nilly. And only give permission for selected roles you think you are a fit for. And that is best done by email so you have a record of it.

    IF you don’t do these things then don’t be surprised if you continue to be left out in the dark as to where your information or who is working on your behalf.

    I hope that shed some light on your question.

    Posted by 


    The Legal Beagle

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