When I worked in agency recruitment, I would present candidates to my clients who I felt were a good fit for their open role and organization, regardless of their current work status. If you’re a candidate who is out of work, I would still recommend contacting recruiters in your industry or field of expertise. I think everyone has an opportunity to raise their appeal on LinkedIn whether they are currently working or not. This can include taking LinkedIn learning courses to stay fresh on certain knowledge and adding keywords to your profile. Posting valuable content for your connections and engaging in industry conversations is also a great way to position yourself as a valuable resource.
What This Means for Your Client
It’s refreshing to hear the sentiment around out-of-work candidates is changing. More compassionate recruitment practices do not fault job seekers for unemployment. Recruiters can see past circumstances as long as the candidate has the right experience and demonstrated value. As career coaches and resume writers, it’s important we teach our clients to be upfront about what led to their current situation and what they are doing to stay engaged in their field while they are out of work. To avoid recruiters and hiring managers jumping to their own conclusions, these situations can be explained in the cover letter, resume, or LinkedIn profile.
There is also an opportunity to provide additional LinkedIn training and interview coaching, as we want to help our clients build confidence in navigating these difficult conversations. By helping our clients identify opportunities for professional growth and thought leadership on LinkedIn we can help them raise their visibility and appeal. It’s also a useful exercise to help them reframe situations so that our clients can approach difficult topics from a place of positivity. With adequate reflection and preparation, answering ‘Why did you leave your last job?’ or ‘What did you think about your last manager?’ will be smooth sailing.
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