The Do’s and Don’ts of Being Your Own Recruiter

Sometimes, it’s important to take control of certain aspects in your life in order to obtain the best outcome. This certainly applies to the job search.

Understandably, it may be intimidating to take the reins of your own search, but this simple fact remains true: no one else is going to fully do it for you (or be as invested as you are) even if they claim they will. Further, by being your own recruiter, you may get more out of your job search. After all, no one knows you better than yourself.

So, if you’re ready to take control of your job hunt, here are some do’s and don’ts of being your own recruiter:

DO take the time to conduct your research

Before you begin any major tactic, it’s important to conduct proper research in order to make informed decisions. The same goes for the job search. Be sure to take the time to do your research in regards to which companies you’ll be targeting, what kind of candidate they are looking for, and how you are going to contact them. By doing so, you’ll be able to perform your job search better and be a more suitable recruiter for yourself.

DON’T make the mistake of looking for jobs incorrectly

Part of being your own recruiter is looking and reaching out to employers correctly. However, if you don’t do this properly, you aren’t going to do yourself any favors.

For example, if you are using a job board, it’s better for candidates to search for opportunities by sourcing occupational categories, not job titles. Many jobs have transferrable skills — therefore, employers place jobs by occupational categories, like education or management, in order to reach the most candidates. Further, just because you search by title doesn’t mean you’re going to get the best results.

DO reach out to your network

The people you keep in your network are important. So, when you’re being your own recruiter, it’s advisable to reach out to your network for job search and industry advice. This is not to say you only use your network when you need them–that’s not how it works. On the contrary, you should have already given your network a reason to help you in the first place, by offering to help them with their own projects, giving them ideas, and just maintaining a healthy relationship with each person.

When it comes down to it, you should give them a reason to divulge information like job openings or future opportunities. After all, referrals are pretty powerful in the job search, but you won’t get them if you don’t have solid and sustainable connections.

DON’T think the job search is easy

If you’ve been on the hunt for a while, you know it’s not. And it’s not supposed to be. So, by being your own recruiter in an unpredictable job market, things may get lost in the stacks. However, this isn’t a reason to give up. You still have the same end goal: successfully landing a job in the career you love. Your tactics may just have to change in order to get there.

Do yourself a favor and analyze how you’ve done your job search so far. What’s worked and what hasn’t? Are you not getting a call back because you have a bad online presence? Is your resume up-to-date? Are you reaching out to employers directly? Answers to these questions are important, and part of being your own recruiter is being honest with yourself. By doing so, you may be able to turn things around.

Be smart, be proactive, and stay informed. The recruiter in you will be able to source and land the best opportunities this way.

What are some other do’s and don’ts of being your own recruiter?

About Mary Marino

Mary Marino is the founder of, a job search resource. has launched its “Occupation Pipeline” widget, a unique tool which enables users to search employment opportunities by sourcing occupations and employers, rather than job titles. Connect with Mary at or on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

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