The Worst Recruiter Habits

Let’s get it out in the open, we’re all guilty of a few bad habits. The problem is, in a job like recruitment these can seriously cost you. When you work in an industry that’s so highly stereotyped, it’s not difficult to forge a bad reputation for yourself. These are the worst recruiter habits you really ought to avoid.

Being Too Pushy/Salesy

Let’s start this with one of the most frustrating traits of recruiters – an overly pushy or salesy attitude. Moving jobs or hiring a new employee is a huge commitment. If you try too hard to force that placement through, you’re guaranteed to grind on all those you’re working with.

Try having a discussion to overcome objections and reassure your client/candidate – don’t just pitch to them.

Send to All Templates

Dear [insert name here], do you think we can’t see through your generic send to all template emails/InMails? Drop the mass messaging and add a little personality. You do it when sliding into DMs on Instagram, so why should your InMails be any different?

Talking Too Much

Okay, all recruiters love to chat but you know you should be listening more and talking less.

Selling a Dream

Unless you’ve got the job of a lifetime sitting on your desk (which you probably haven’t), stop selling the dream. Get your head out the clouds and talk to the candidate about the facts – they’ll appreciate your honesty.

Being Dishonest

While on the topic of honesty, we’re going to leave this one here.

Misleading a candidate or client just isn’t cool. Don’t do it, there’s no excuse! Every job has its less enjoyable tasks, every candidate has their weaknesses. In an industry showered with criticism, an honest approach speaks volumes.

Not Preparing for Meetings

You may be busy, you may want to focus on your hot jobs – but you still have to find time to prep for meetings. Whether you’re seeing a candidate or client, turn up ready for whatever they throw at you. If you’re meeting a client, always have a few versatile CVs ready to show off. If you’re meeting a candidate, make sure you’ve actually read their CV.

Not Researching a Business

If you’re calling a business to chat to a client, make sure you actually know what they do. It takes three minutes to skim a company’s website.

An Unoriginal Sales Pitch

Companies get a lot of calls from recruiters. If your sales pitch is unoriginal, you won’t stand a chance. You need to find an edge – think of it as you own personal USP.

Not Following Up

Called a candidate who couldn’t talk? Did they ask you to phone back later? Did you forget?

Even if you get back to them at a later date, by not following up or keeping your word, you’re giving yourself a reputation for unreliability. If candidate or client asks you to follow up, do it – it will be noticed.

Stringing Candidates Along

So, you’ve sold a candidate on a specific job, they’re keen and get an interview. If this candidate gets rejected, it’s your obligation to notify them.

Stringing a candidate along just isn’t fair – it’ll leave a sour taste in the mouth. They may not be suitable for this role but they could be perfect for the next.

Putting Irrelevant Candidates Forward

In many respects, recruitment is a numbers game. That doesn’t mean you should put irrelevant candidates forward to your client. It’s wasting everyone’s time. Focus on quality over quantity, it’ll benefit you in the long run.

Putting All Your Eggs in One Basket

This one will fall away with experience. New recruiters are renowned for pinning all their hopes on one candidate. Putting all your eggs in one basket is guaranteed to lead to disappointment – don’t worry, we’ve all been there!


From the new watch to back-to-back deals, recruiters love to brag. Working hard and being rewarded deserves a little self-congratulation. Just try to stay humble, if at all possible.

Not Building Rapport

Another one that falls away with experience. If you’re unable to find common ground with your client or candidate your calls will feel cold and unnatural.

Drinking Excessively

As if this one’s going to change anytime soon…

Procrastinating on LinkedIn Reading Recruitment Blogs

Oh come on… We’ve got to let you get away with this one! A little coffee break content doesn’t hurt from time to time.

If you’re looking to take a step up to the next level, we want to hear from you. We have plenty of high quality roles for top experienced and entry level candidates. We only work with the best, if that’s you we want to know. Have a browse of our job board to get a feel for the type of vacancy we have on offer.


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