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Should I Try to Bypass Recruiters and Apply for a Job Directly? |

Should I Try to Bypass Recruiters and Apply for a Job Directly? |

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This is a common question that people ask. After all, so many never hear from a recruiter after the initial contact about a job. Here, I offer no BS advice.


The question is, "Should I try to bypass recruiters and apply for a job directly?"
Now I'm going to work with the assumption in answering this question that a recruiter has reached out to you about a particular position, told you about it, and you're now asking this question, "Should I just tried to bypass them?" Now, here's my issue with this. I want to start by saying, I have no skin in this game anymore. I worked as a recruiter for more than 40 years. I have their perspective, I have the job hunter's perspective, because I've spoken to hundreds of thousands of you during the course of my career, both in recruiting and in coaching.
Here's the issue. Let's say you did that. And I'm not going to speak ill of recruiters here. I just want to simply say, let's say you do that. You're applying for a job. What you've now done is go through the black hole. Seriously, why would you want to put yourself in the position of going through the black hole when someone can circumvent this process and get you in front of a hiring manager? Or get your resume in front of that hiring manager directly? Why would you put yourself through that? It makes no sense to me.
I listened to job hunters complain for years, to this day, complaining about the black hole, and you want to apply for a job directly? It makes no sense. If the recruiter is incompetent, well, I pause for a second and say, what makes them incompetent? That they couldn't get you in the door is normally the answer.
Normally, they can't get you in the door because your resume doesn't demonstrate a fit or there's something incongruent about your background, and how you're presenting itself yourself to them. If you're not really a fit, what good is this going to do to contact the firm directly? Heyll you're doing . . . you're spinning your wheels, going through the black hole, no less. I'm thinking it's going to come up with a different conclusion.
They are talking directly to a hiring manager or to an HR person; they are not applying through an automated system like you are that's designed to shield you from having a direct contact with the hiring manager or with HR. It makes no sense to me.
Now, let me go one step further. Let's say this recruiter has contacted you. They're saying they're going to present you and now you want to apply directly. Here, I'm going to be blunt. You are a thief. You're stealing information from this person for your own benefit and depriving them of the potential of earning an income.
Why in God's name would you do that? Seriously, why would you do that? Why would you be a thief and steal from them? Seriously, it's like they're subhuman to you. You treat them as though they're less than human beings. Yet you want to be catered to? Why is it that they deserve that from you?
Let them do their job and earn their income. They have earned that privilege by providing you with that information that you're not going to act on. You think this is a good thing. It isn't. Putting aside karma for for a second, I'll just simply say if you want to do all the work, without any input from someone who may know this client better than you ever will until you to join, by all means go ahead.
But I'm going to be point blank with you. It's stupid on your part. Let them do the job. Don't steal from them. Let them work the system to their heart's content and sit back and see what the consequences are. There's no reason to step into this situation.


Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter
Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a career and leadership coach who worked as a recruiter for more than 40 years. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with more than 1400 episodes and his newest show, “No BS Coaching Advice.” He is a member of The Forbes Coaches Council. “No BS JobSearch Advice Radio” was recently named a Top 10 podcast for job search. was also recently named a Top 10 YouTube channel for job search.

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