No Feedback from the Recruiter – Why? And What You Can Do.
by Cathal McInerney – Recruitment Associate at Flagship Management
When I start to work with a candidate on a role, I always try and have a conversation about how we are going to interact and co-operate during the process, so that we are all on the same page. One topic that always comes up and seems to be the biggest area of complaint is feedback, or lack of it. I hope this article will provide some answers for those who find themselves in this situation.
- You had a very interesting chat with a recruiter; they described a role that sounded perfect for you; they were excited and promised to submit your CV to their client and asked when you could do an interview… and then nothing.
- Your CV does reach the client; you go for an interview; the interview goes well and you get on well with the interviewers; they ask very positive questions… and then nothing.
This can be very frustrating, especially if you have gone for interview, but unfortunately it does happen occasionally. There are a number of reasons for this, which I have outlined below. I have also added a few actions that you can take to try and avoid the ‘no feedback trap’ and have also added one or two things not to do.
Common Reasons Why No Feedback After Sending CV:
- Role is not a priority for the client. Your CV goes in an email folder and waits for role to go live. Sometimes the role never materializes, so no feedback is given.
- Role is already at the final interview or offer stage but you are a good match so your CV is filed as back up. Unfortunately the closing process can take anywhere from 1 to 6 weeks and your application gets forgotten about.
- Role is put on hold and the client does not inform the recruiter.
- Some clients never revert back to recruiters with feedback, so there is none to give.
- Interview process can drag on for anything up to and over 1 year.
- Client does not have the role at present, but will have in the future, so is compiling CVs in advance. This is not explained to the recruiter.
- Internal changes or budget issues may lead to the role being put on hold or cancelled.
- You have unfortunately been contacted by an unprofessional recruiter who does not give feedback, is not recruiting for a real position and has no relationship with the client
- Recruiters are people too, and pretty busy ones at that, so sometimes following up on feedback from the client can sometimes get overlooked. To anyone who has not received feedback from me on a role, I offer my apologies.
Common Reasons For No Feedback After Interview:
- A common issue that I have come across is that senior management has not approved the role. The hiring manager will advertise a role, select a candidate and then look for headcount approval. As the proper internal process has not been followed, things may take longer to work through. As well as this, senior management may have a different idea of what kind of person is needed, so the search may be restarted.
- Decision-making can also take some time, it is now normal to see a recruitment cycle of 9 months or more.
- The client likes you but decides to hold on for the ’perfect’ candidate and so does not come back with a definite answer to you.
- Unfortunately you have interviewed with an unprofessional company and they do not get back to the recruiter or you.
- Role is put on hold, and the whole process can drag on.
What To Do:
- Agree on a feedback timetable with your recruiter identifying checkpoints in the process when they are to get back to you. You should ask the questions “When do you expect to get feedback?”, “Will you get back to me even if you do not have feedback?”. If you have not done this, then check in regularly with your recruiter.
- When speaking with a recruiter at the start, take the time to really get an impression of them. Do they know what they are talking about? Do they seem professional? Do they have all the information about the role?
- If you feel uncertain about the recruiter’s professionalism, do not give them your CV or work with them on a search. Would you want an unprofessional person representing you?
- Sometimes the only thing to do is to mark it down to experience and move on.
What Not To Do:
- You should at all times remain professional. Do not get involved in a war of words with your recruiter.
- It is ok to follow up with your recruiter, but multiple calls and emails will be counter-productive.
- Do not contact the client yourself. This always puts you in a bad light.
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