The recent posts by Joel Spolsky on recruiters (you can start here and work backwards) are spot on. Recruiters seem to not only never tell you the name of the company they’re hiring for until you’ve totally confirmed that you will apply and they have to tell you the company name because you need to actually find the building for the interview, but they’re mostly clueless about the job requirements which a) the company is advertising for and b) which would meet your skillset.
I feel quite raw about this issue. I got my new job a year ago (I can still call it new if it doesn’t feel that long, right?) and I’m still getting emails and calls from recruiters asking if I’d like such-and-such a position or am I free for contract work? Oh? You have a job already? We didn’t know, can you tell us more about that so we can update our database? Thanks. Oh, and we’ll call back in a month to see if you’re still happy.
If I want a new job, I will go and look for one. I will notify the agencies and websites etc. etc. and do that on my own without you having to prompt me! Furthermore, when I do get a job, and you next email or call me and I tell you I have a job, write it the hell down! After I’ve started a job, I expect those calls – after all, how do they know I’m now employed? But after I’ve told a different recruiter from the same agency for the tenth time that I’m not interested, seriously, my patience starts to get a little bit tried and honestly, it means I’m not going to actually deal with you next time I am looking for work.
Even worse are the emailers. TOP LONDON JOB NOW! £££!
What really gets me about the emailers are the ones which aren’t even mailmerged, they don’t even say “Dear Phil” at the top, it’s just the same mail sent out to hundreds or thousands of people around the country who come up on the “matching skillset” search on their computer. How lazy can you possibly be? I will never, ever reply to one of those mails, and the chances are I’ll write the company name down and never deal with them again either.
In fairness, there are some good ones. There might be an early phonecall after I put my CV up and notify companies, and then the following emails (even if there turn out to be loads of them, which is not often the case with these companies) are always “Dear Phil, Thanks for X. How’s the job at Y going?”, so even if they are mailmerged from their database it’s such a tiny amount more work that I will instantly love the company in comparison and be a million times more likely to use them in the future.
I’ve almost vented my frustration now, but just to conclude: I’m still receiving comments and emails about a blog post I made this time last year, in which (the otherwise good) Computer People make a demand for a photocopy of my passport with no explanation why and then their legal department phone me when I post about the possibility of it being an identity theft scam.