Job hunting can be a job in itself. You are managing your inbox, social media presence, and recruiters – sometimes all at once. The best way to stay focused on your job search is to be prepared.

Managing Your Inbox
You will likely get approached by recruiters during your job search. Have a few response templates handy when these opportunities arise:

  • If you are not job searching – Thank them for their time and consideration and tell them you will keep in touch if you find yourself wanting to make a change in the future. This is also a great time to suggest a colleague and offer to pass on the recruiter’s information.
  • If you are looking for the right opportunity – Just like in middle school, you want to play it cool. Be open about where you are in your career right now and offer to schedule a quick phone call.
  • If you are looking for a job, just not this one – Not every job a recruiter approaches you with will be a fit. And that’s okay. While you are telling them that the position is not a fit for you, also tell them what you are looking for – ideal salary, a work-from-home situation, more opportunities to dive deeper into content development, etc. Ask them if they know of any opportunities that line up with these goals.
  • If you are interested in this opportunity – Yes! It looks like we might have a match! Confirm your interest and get an initial interview on the calendar.
  • If your dream job falls into your lap – Highlight your enthusiasm but also focus on the reasons why you are the perfect candidate for this job.

Managing Recruiters
Just like your mother said, not everyone who expresses interest in you is worth your time. Sometimes you must vet out a few bad apples to get to the good ones. Respond to them via email or LinkedIn InMail and ask if they have a specific role in mind for you or if they just want to get to know you. You can determine from there if you want to pursue the conversation further.When you do get on the phone with a recruiter, let them know what you are looking for. Focus on responsibilities, work environment, individual contributor vs. team, career growth if needed, flexibility and other elements important to you. If they ask for salary information on the first call, give a range of what you are looking for. You can discuss compensation in depth when there is a job you’re interested in on the table.Key to your success with recruiters, internal or external, is building trust in the relationship. Be open and transparent and expect the same from your recruiter.

Managing LinkedIn InMail
LinkedIn InMail has become a boon to working professionals, but like any social media network, it can be susceptible to a few bad actors. For a nominal monthly fee, you can pretty much get into anyone’s inbox. Be responsible with that privilege and use Inmail wisely and sincerely. This will lead you to the most responses and assistance with your search.

  • Check the settings on your account. Your choices here are limited – either everyone can reach you or you limit yourself to your first connections. You can also block individual accounts too.
  • Don’t use third-party spam apps. LinkedIn uses automated systems to root out spam, automation and other similar bad behavior. If you get caught spamming, LinkedIn could kick you off their network.
  • Target your audience and personalize your message.This might seem obvious, but you would be surprised at the number of folks who InMail anyone and everyone, without a thought about their goals and strategy. Make sure your message is relevant and that you are reaching your target audience.

A job hunt is quite literally, a job. Just like a job, a job hunt requires that you juggle many different details at once. Are you managing all of these details effectively?