The way of recruitment is changing. Traditionally, an ad was placed and hirers searched and screened applicants who showed interest in the position. However, today with the increase in professional social media and networking sites, recruiters have the ability to review diverse talent and reach out with to them with opportunities, regardless of if the person has indicated interest. Building profiles on both LinkedIn and Seek allow recruiters to see skill sets and experiences. To access a greater pool of applicants, including both passive and active talent, it is common practice for recruiters to reach out to these highly capable talents for further discussion. Receiving an unexpected inbox, email or phone call for a position not even on your radar can be confusing, however following these simple tips can ensure you get the most out of the experience.
Whether or not you are interested, it is always best to respond. Just because position is not of interest now, it does not mean that down the track you would not be interested in pursuing something with the company. A polite decline will take seconds of your time, but will leave you in good stead.
If you have the slightest interest, enquire further
By enquiring further, it does not commit you to applying for the position. Sometimes it is best to find out more even if you are pretty happy in your current location – at the end of the day, if you never ask, you will never know. This could be a fantastic opportunity in a field you have never thought about. Find a mutual time to talk freely about the role. Understandably, this is much easier to do through nonverbal discussion methods, but if you are approached via phone call in the office, keep a calm and professional manner, indicate is not a good time to talk and suggest alternative times. Remaining vague will be fine – the hirer can likely gather you may not be in a position to talk freely.
Come prepared with questions
The opportunity presented to you will probably be very vague and you will obviously want to know more. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Make sure by the end of the discussion you have a good understanding of the role on offer. This will allow you to compare you current role to the new opportunity, and see if it is the right time for you to try something different. From here, you will know whether to proceed with an application or interview.
It can be flattering to be approached for a job you have not applied for but it can also be confusing and uncertain. By finding out more and asking questions you will never be obliged to apply, however you also don’t want to rush into proceeding with an application purely out of flattery that they have sought you out. Be rational but be open to new opportunities, and from here consider options and act accordingly.