A powerful message from a candidate to recruiters

Recruiters who are successful are the ones who believe that empathy, compassion and a little bit of kindness are absolutely crucial to the hiring process

  • Feb. 1, 2022

We read somewhere that there are more open jobs currently than there are candidates available - which means that this is a candidate’s market. While it is understandable that recruiters out there are trying to reach out to as many candidates as possible, we believe that certain best practices are being missed in the process specifically in terms of communicating and following up with candidates. This true story (shared by one of our readers who was approached by a recruiter) depicted below portrays a breakdown in the process that we have heard many candidates talk about and we encourage every professional to show more empathy and humanity - whether you are in the recruiters’ seat or the candidate’s seat.

Yesterday, a recruiter approached me letting me know about a potential role that I might be a great fit for. To be honest, I am not really looking for another opportunity as I really like the current job I hold but as a courtesy, I replied stating that I would love to learn more before I say yes or no as it does not hurt to learn what's out there. She promptly replied with extreme enthusiasm stating that she wanted to chat with me asap even if it meant jumping on a call yesterday. I replied stating that my schedule was open and I also mentioned that I would work around her schedule.
Surprisingly, two days have passed by and I haven't heard from her. I am just wondering - Why would she be so prompt and enthusiastic asking to chat with me asap and suddenly disappear? Does she now think I am not a potential fit? To begin with, why was I even approached then? I am ready to show empathy by accounting for unforeseen events but all I am trying to say is that if you are a recruiter, please be mindful about these things - If you approach a candidate about a job opportunity with enthusiasm and promptness, it is equally your responsibility to let the candidate know if something came up or if the role now requires a different candidate portfolio. That shows your integrity, reliability, and promptness! Just putting this out there as I know recruiters expect the same communication standards from candidates.

Worth a read, isn't it? Here are 3 qualities we think that all successful recruiters have:


We can't lay enough emphasis on this. If you are a recruiter and are approaching candidates with enthusiasm and expect quick answers and replies from them, please be mindful and reciprocate. Email candidates back or give them a quick ring in case search profiles have changed and if the clients are looking for a different candidate portfolio.

Setting Realistic Expectations

Setting realistic expectations is key. If the interview timeline would take two to three weeks, then it is best to be upfront with the candidate and communicate the same. Salary ranges should also be communicated so that the candidate knows if this role would be a step up or a step down from the current role the candidate holds.

Being Kind

If we have learned anything from covid, it is to be kind, empathetic and compassionate. We are all humans and there are a lot of unexpected events that can take place in life so don't be quick to judge a situation for your personal benefit. Give the benefit of doubt to others and give a chance to everyone to be heard. For example, if a candidate replies back stating things have changed and they aren't interested in the role they were being recruited for, ask them and understand the why along with stating you are happy for the candidate as long as the candidate is happy. If a candidate needs to reschedule an interview due to some unforeseen events, be understanding and state that you would ask the client for a day that works for them and that you would do everything to make sure the interview can be rescheduled.

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