How to work with a recruiter to find a job

Recruiter talking about CV with job seeker

Recruiters can make your job search easier, so here are a few tips about working with them.

Recruiters specialise in parts of the job market, and:

  • register relevant job seekers like you
  • have contacts who tell them about job opportunities.

When a job comes up, they think about which of their job seekers could do it and then contact them.

So a good recruiter can play an important role in helping you find the right job.

If you’re hired, your recruiter is paid by the employer.

Choose the right recruiter

There are many recruiters to choose from, but you need to find one who’s right for you.

  • Get recommendations from co-workers and friends who do similar work to you.
  • Look for experienced recruiters who have good contacts in your job market.
  • If you’ve used a good recruiter in the past, get in touch with them again.

Meet your recruiter

Recruiters who have seen your CV often want to meet face-to-face so they can:

  • get to know your personality
  • build trust and a working relationship with you
  • match you with the right job opportunity.

These meetings aren’t as formal as job interviews, but it still pays to:

  • dress and present yourself well
  • be prepared to answer questions about your CV and yourself
  • think about what kind of job you want.

Meeting your recruiter is also an opportunity to ask:

  • if they specialise in contract or permanent roles
  • what the job market is like
  • about the roles they have available
  • if your CV can be improved.

Be available, honest and clear

If you don’t get the first job your recruiter asks you to interview for, stay in touch regularly and make it easy for them to find you another opportunity.

Good recruiters will be honest and clear about jobs and the job market, so be honest and clear about what you need from them.

Answer them quickly if they tell you about an opportunity because some roles can be filled within a day.

Find out more


  • CIO, ‘9 rules for working with headhunters and IT recruiters’, 12 November 2018, (
  • Dogoodjobs, ‘5 Tips for Job Hunting with Recruitment Agents’, accessed July 2019, (
  • Live Career, ‘15 Tips for Working with Recruiters and Headhunters’, accessed July 2019, (
  • Owens, R, associate consultant (marketing and communications), Madison Recruitment, interview, July 2019.
  • Top Resume, ‘Tips for Working With Recruiters’, accessed July 2019, (

Updated 3 Oct 2019