When beginning your job search it’s natural to want to give yourself maximum exposure in order to land that elusive ‘dream job’. It makes sense to speak with professional recruiters to see what opportunities they have available in addition to your own methods, but have you ever stopped to consider how much is too much ? Can spreading your profile too widely be detrimental to your job prospects?
When considering the job market, there are an increasing number of ways to find opportunities or make it known that you’re looking for work. The most common/well known methods being Online Job Boards (such as seek.com & mycareer), careers section of your local newspaper and seeking assistance from a Recruitment Agency. Social media is also becoming an increasingly popular way for companies to advertise their vacancies and for job seekers to let their networks know they are seeking employment. So which method(s) are right for you?
Advertised vacancies are a great representation of what’s currently available to you, and can be advertised directly by a company, through an agency or more often than not, both. Agencies are also able to give you access to those opportunities that may not be advertised or be able to represent you to their client base and uncover additional opportunities for you. Knowing this it makes sense to register with an agency in addition to your own efforts but many job seekers fall into the trap of thinking the more agency’s they register with, the more opportunities will come their way. While this may be true for the passive roles, the majority of opportunities will come from advertised vacancies and in order to get the best candidates, clients will often work with a number of agencies, making the possibility of doubling up extremely high.
Clients like to know that you are taking your job search seriously and if they are receiving your resume from a number of recruitment consultants it can reflect poorly on you. This makes selecting which agencies you work with very important as not all agencies will contact you prior to putting you forward for an opportunity. I have had candidates turned down by a client for a position they really wanted because they had been put forward by another agency without their consent. When you register with an agency, 9 times out of 10 your resume will remain on their database unless you request it to be removed so it’s easy to see how you could lose track of how many copies are floating around out there if you don’t limit your search.
My recommendation when commencing your job search is to select 2 or 3 (at most) agencies who you know are going to be ethical and work with you throughout the process. A good indication if they are going to take your search seriously and act ethically is if they ask you to come in and register / interview with them. If they just ask you to send in your resume, chances are they will be fairly relaxed in sending it out without bothering to call you and if they haven’t interviewed you, how well can they really know what type of jobs you are looking for or suited to?
In summary, take your time when applying for jobs directly and choose which agencies you work with wisely. A good recruitment consultant will be able to work out a plan with you that will ensure you are getting the exposure you need to land that job, without sending your resume all over town.