Learn how to feel more confident calling a recruiter

Before you call a recruiter or prospective employer, you should always take time to prepare.

You should always start by introducing yourself by name and explaining which job ad you are calling about. Usually there’s a reference number or code so you should have this available. You should then briefly ask for the information you require. You can use this to discuss if your experience is suitable for the position. You’ll want to present your experience in such a way that the person understands there’s a potential “fit” with the position but also a genuine reason why you feel unsure about just applying online.

It’s important to understand that as soon as you start speaking you are giving the person who is managing the recruitment process a chance to get to know you and what you sound like. If you sound confident and strong (but friendly!) you are more likely to make a good impression and be memorable. 

Following up is important too! Once you have ended your call with the recruiter you should either send an email to briefly thank them for their time and attach your CV if you are suitable for the position that they have advertised or, if you are not suited for the position you should send an email to briefly thank them for their time and confirm when you will be in contact again to see if they have any other jobs that may be coming up.

To feel prepared for your conversation, write down some questions you have about the position and any reasons why you feel your knowledge/experience matches the description. Here are some ideas to guide you in these conversations:

Information about you:

  • I have been working at (Add company name) as a (Add position title) for (Add period of time) years
  • My key skills are: 
  • My main responsibilities have included: 
  • Previously I worked for (Add company name)

Questions about the position/company:

  • What exactly would the role involve?
  • How much travel is there?
  • How could you describe the work environment?
  • How do you think they’d feel about hiring someone who comes from (Add your country)?

Make sure to listen carefully to what the person says and how they respond to your questions. What words do they use and what keywords from your background/experience do they seem interested in? Note these down and make sure these stand out in your CV and cover letter.

Before ending the conversation always thank the person for their time. Wait until after your call has ended to make the decision about whether you want to apply for the position.

Good luck!