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Get noticed by recruiters

The number-one rule in attracting recruiters is, be assertive. Get noticed by recruiters The number-one rule in attracting recruiters is, be assertive.

Dear Molly: Is there anything I can do to make it easier for IT recruiters to find me? I posted my resumé on a bunch of the online job sites and haven’t heard from anyone. I have a background in JAVA and C+ programming, but I don’t like the company I am working for. I don’t have time to go looking for a job on my own–that’s why I want to work with a recruiter. What’s wrong? Why can’t I get anyone interested in me?

Molly says: Let me try to explain what may be happening. Only the most determined, and most hungry, reach for the apples in the highest branches of the tree. Translated, Grasshopper, this means that unless the apple is hanging in their face, most recruiters don’t bother. To get noticed, you have to get right in front of them and stay there until you have a new job.

If you haven’t gotten a nibble from what you’ve done so far, it’s time to refocus your efforts. You need to find the technical recruiting firms that specialize in placing programmers like you. Once you find them, don’t post your resumé to their Web site. Call and ask who the best recruiters are. A question like that will get you bounced right past the receptionist and you’ll end up talking to someone who can help you.

After you have the names, send your resumé in the mail to each recruiter. Make sure to include a good cover letter that tells them precisely why it would be easy for them to place you in a new job. Then stay in touch with these folks (but don’t pester them) until they realize you aren’t going away until they help you.

Your best bet for finding good recruiting firms is to ask other programmers. The other way to find them is to search the Web and fire off some e-mails to various recruiting firms. Ask if they would be interested in talking with you, and pay attention to how quickly they respond and to what they say. If they don’t respond to your e-mails in a helpful and timely fashion, how helpful will they be in other ways?

Once you find a firm that seems responsive, send in your resumé. Send your resumé in the mail and make it and the cover letter look really nice. No typos, and use good resumé paper.

Molly Joss also writes the monthly Career Advisor column for ComputerUser magazine. Ask a career-related question at [email protected]

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