contacting recruiters on LinkedIn

Should You Contact Recruiters Who View Your LinkedIn Profile?

One of my LinkedIn connections sent me this question about contacting recruiters on LinkedIn today: “Do we send a note to recruiters once we know they’ve visited our profiles?”

As I typed my thoughts, it occurred to me that other people might wonder about this too. Hence this post.

My answer varies depending on your connection status with the recruiter.

If You Are Connected

First, if you have a job, you can send a message like this:

Hi Tom,

I noticed that you viewed my LinkedIn profile yesterday. Thank you. I want to let you know that, while I’m happy in my job, I am always open to hearing about a great opportunity.

Also, if I can help you with any of your searches, please reach out.

Kind regards,

Donna

Second, if you don’t have a job, or you’re in consulting mode, you might send this:

Hi Tom,

I noticed that you viewed my LinkedIn profile yesterday. Thank you. I’m always open to hearing about a great opportunity.

Also, if I can help you with any of your searches, please reach out.

Kind regards,

Donna

Be a Source

If the recruiter thought you might be a fit for a current search, they would have initiated contact.

Nonetheless, establish that you can be a source for them.

Recruiters love good sources (people who understand what the recruiter needs and refer good fits — bad referrals are a dime a dozen — good ones are gold).

Contacting Recruiters on LinkedIn When You Don’t Know Them

Third, when you don’t know the recruiter, be proactive and send an invitation to connect like this:

Dear Tom,

Thank you for looking at my LinkedIn profile. I would like to connect because, while I like my job, I am always open to hearing about great opportunities.

Also, if I can help you with any of your searches, please reach out.

Kind regards,

Donna

Let’s Connect on LinkedIn

Please don’t hesitate to invite me to connect on LinkedIn here: Donna Svei, Executive Resume Writer. The more I know about my readers, the better I can make my blog.

Image: Fotolia/AVAVA
Updated April 2019

© 2013 – 2019, Donna Svei. All rights reserved.

Comments 25

  1. Donna, you’re so right on all counts! I spent a while as a recruiter. If I don’t absolutely have to spend time dealing with something as a recruiter, I’m really grateful!

    Thank you Ed! Donna

  2. Donna,
    You are spot on. I tell clients that recruiters are your friend.They are people people. Recruiters also move around a lot, and if you consistently connect with recruiters in the long term those relationships and connections pay off.

    When one looks at your profile it means there was some interest there. Find out what that interest was.

    Marc, You’re right. I recently reached out to recruit someone for a search who I’ve known since the first year I recruited. Donna

  3. Good point, Donna. Even though I am currently happily employed, I always connect with recruiters or HR folks who view my profile. The only caveat is we have to be connected by 2nd level connections.

    Here’s what I say:
    ————————————-
    Hi [name],

    I am [position] at [company]. We have a few connections in common (name 1, name 2, name 3). I’d like to add you to my LinkedIn network as well.

    Larry Engel, OMCP
    Cell: ###-###-####
    ————————————–

    I add common connections names and my cell # to add relevance and validity to the request. I get about a 90% acceptance rate and no IDKs.

    I invite all recruiters and HR peeps to connect with me at: http:www.linkedin.com/in/LarryEngel

    Larry Engel, OMCP

    Hi Larry, I love it when a comment actually stands alone as a “guest post.” Thank you for the terrific template and the reasoning behind it. Donna

  4. Great article, Donna. I have always tried to steer correspondence from written to phone or in-person. Also, a true love for meeting new people goes a long way as I am very interested in the life of a lawyer. Every time someone in my field contacts me, a million questions naturally come forward and help to inspire natural dialogue with the recruiter who reached out to me. I have ended up with many close connections here on LinkedIn that started as mere visits to my page.

    Eric P. Hoffman

    Hi Eric, Thank you for your comment. I’m really enjoying the efforts LinkedIn has made to become more social. It has become at least as effective as Twitter for taking relationships that start online forward to the phone and IRL meetings. Donna

  5. If I took a look at your profile, I’m either interested in you for a position right now, for something coming down the line, or I’m interested in someone in your network. Either way, we’d both benefit from you dropping me a brief note and connecting. I’m also connected to lots of recruiters who share content and positions with me that I share on my profile.

    Loura, Thank you for your insight. Building on what you said, we recruiters tend to connect with each other. Thus, if you’re a first level connection in one recruiter’s network, you become a second and third level connection in many more recruiters’ networks. This will almost always pop you up in their search results over “out of network” people. Donna

  6. Good article Donna. I will generally shoot recruiters a note if I see they viewed my profile. Even if I wasn’t a fit for what they were looking for this time, I may be a fit the next time – and in that case I’d rather be connected ahead of time. As the saying goes – “luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity”.

    Andy

    Andy, Exactly. And you’re so relaxed about it! Reaching out doesn’t have to be a big deal. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Thank you, Donna

  7. I have a question similar to this one. Now that I’ve posted my resume on some job search sites, I have been getting e-mails from recruiters about positions they’re looking to fill. Unfortunately none of them have been a fit for what I’m currently capable of. I have been replying to their e-mails anyway to thank them for contacting me, letting them know what kind of work I am looking for, asking them if they would like to connect on LinkedIn, and asking if they would keep me in mind for future opportunities. So far I haven’t gotten any responses from that. I haven’t tried calling them, because I didn’t want to take up their time since I’m not a fit for the position they’re trying to fill. Is it considered acceptable to call in this situation, or should I just stick to what I am doing and keep replying to the e-mails?

    Thank you,
    Joshua Hatcher

    Hi Joshua, Great question. Let me suggest that you continue to reply to their emails just as have you described with one tweak. Rather than asking them if they would like to connect on LinkedIn, tell them you will send them an invitation to connect on LinkedIn and then do so. Good idea to NOT call. They have to focus on serving their clients, the companies who pay them to fill positions their open positions. Donna

  8. Thank you so much for the quick response. I will definitely take your advice on the change to make. I can see that working much better.

    Joshua Hatcher

    My pleasure Joshua. Donna

  9. Thank you Donna for this article. How would this email template change if the person who viewed my profile is the hiring manager (based on title displayed) and I can not see their name?

    Hi Avi, If the person has hidden their name, I wouldn’t reach out. Donna

  10. Hey Donna! Enjoyed your thoughts and completely agree on your approach. I have even wondered if the recruiters paying for access to the LinkedIn pool show up under “Who’s Viewed Your Profile”?

    Anyway, great insights and thanks for sharing. I am passionate about personal visibility and with the Internet being the new first impression it’s advice like you’re dispensing that’s invaluable to most!

    Thanks again!

    Tom McCollum

    Wow Tom! Thank you for your kind words. Donna

  11. Great article.
    What kind of note do you recommend to send to a person that I do not know but I am interested in adding as a contact? Have you written an article related to this question?
    Thanks for your king attention
    Regards’
    Ricardo Cabrera

    Hi Ricardo,

    Thank you. Try this if the person is a second level connection: HOW TO: Invite 2nd Level LinkedIn Connections to Your Network http://buff.ly/15Pyt6J.

    If not, join a group that the person belongs to, then send them an authentic note mentioning that you both belong to Group X, that you would like to be connected to them, and explain why.

    Good luck!

    Donna

  12. Hi Donna,

    I would like to thank you for such a great and informative article. I am in a similar situation and would appreciate your take on it. I applied for an entry-level position where I am currently an intern. I noticed that the head of the department who will be part of the interview process viewed my profile. Do I send a request to be part of my network and what would I say in my customized message?

    Thank you,

    Kristen

    Hi Kristen,

    Thank you. I would hold back on linking to the department head at this point. If you get the job, then ask your direct supervisor if inviting a connection would be appropriate. If your internship ends without permanent employment, then invite everyone you met and worked with to connect.

    Kind regards,

    Donna

  13. Donna, as always a great post. And giving scripts to people is so empowering. I find that most people don’t do things in job search because they don’t know what to say. Scripts make it possible for people to take more action – and action leads to results in most cases. Thanks for this post! Julie

    Thank you Julie. Donna

  14. Thank you for the advice and the examples are great! I will have to keep that in mind. I would like to twist the question up: I have recently applied for a job (2weeks ago) and the person that the position would report to has viewed my profile yesterday, should I contact him (inmail message) reinstating my interest in the position and saying good luck with your search without asking anything that is related to the job? I dont want to take up his time and don’t expect a response. I wanted to do a follow up but I’ve read very different views about it and haven’t done so yet. I don’t have any personal connections with him but I am in two of the same groups as him.

    Thank you,
    Monica

    Hi Monica,

    Great question. I wouldn’t mind getting a brief follow up note that reiterates your interest and briefly discusses your motivation to do the job along with an example from your past that demonstrates you’re a self-starter. If I’m planning on interviewing you, the note wouldn’t hurt. If I’m on the fence, gaining confidence that I wouldn’t have to motivate you (one of the toughest managerial jobs) might just make me schedule the interview.

    Kind regards,

    Donna

  15. One other note I forgot to ask. Is it okay to connect with him? There is no option to just inmail his profile. Thank you so much for the quick response! I will definitely be reaching out to him. I look forward to your other words of advice!

    Monica

    I would hold on that. If you get the job, ask him in person if it’s OK to connect. If you don’t get the job, wait until he completes his search, then send him a connection invitation saying that you would like to be in his network for future searches (nothing ventured, nothing gained).

  16. Great post! I’ve actually applied to a position last week, and noticed that a manager from the company viewed my LinkedIn profile yesterday. Should I send her a note, a connection request, or ignore it? If I should send her a note, what should I say? I don’t want to be intrusive and ruin my chances of landing an interview.

    Thank you!

    Hi Julie,

    Thank you for your questions. Check out my replies to Monica in the two comments just above yours. I think your questions are similar enough to Monica’s that my answers apply here.

    Best of luck!

    Donna

  17. Hi Donna,

    I really liked this post and the sample notes your provided as well as the discussion that has followed! Remaining active in dialogue with everyone who commented and offering additional adivce and feedback is really great! My question may fall into Monica and Julie’s reply, but here goes. I would like to follow-up with someone who viewed my profile and is not a recruiter. How would your advice change or does it? I am asking in general, however in this specific instance, I have exchanged emails about a job opportunity about 6 months ago and I was asked to follow-up early June for an update. I sent that email, but got no reply. Yesterday I see the person viewed my profile. Perhaps the postion is opening up, not sure? I am curious what you recommend in this specific instance as well as in general? Thank you so much!

    Hi Bruce,

    Thank you for your kind words.

    On your current situation, I think it would be fine to do a note or call. I would mention that I had noticed the profile view and was checking in on the status of the possible position. Then I would reiterate my interest (a compelling “why” statement is always nice) and see what happens.

    Donna

  18. Hi Donna,
    I love reading your Posts. I will start to update my LinkedIn Profile (contacts) using the steps you have provided in one of your your many posts. Also I will use the LinkedIn Groups to make way for possible recruiters to find me or possible employees for that matter.

    Thank you also for sharing some tips on how to response should recruiters or someone elses view our profiles. I very much appreciated your great Posts and I’m very happy to be connected to you via LinkedIn because your sharings in your Posts have build up my confidence and knowledge gap and I’m always learning something new. Thank you so much!

    Awwww, you made my day Matilda. Thank you and good luck! Donna

  19. As a recruiter, when conducting a search, I could look at 500 different profiles per search. If everyone sent me a message thanking me for viewing their profile for every search conducted, my inbox would be full and I would never get any work done.

    As a recruiter, if I come across someone who is either a) suitable for a role or b) can assist in a search, I will contact them. It is in my interest to as placing people is how I make money.

    Viewing a profile means absolutely nothing more than “I want to know what skills you have”.

    Hi James,

    Thank you for your perspective. Fortunately, as we both know, we don’t hear from everyone when we view their profile. It would be overwhelming. However, because recruiters can view profiles anonymously, when they don’t, they open the door to reciprocal outreach. I don’t mind hearing from people as outlined above. If I did, I would view anonymously.

    Kind regards,

    Donna

  20. I recently submitted my resume for a position listed on LinkedIn.com, and subsequently noticed that the individual to whom I addressed my cover letter and resume to viewed my profile on LinkedIn.com. Should I send them a thank you note for taking the time to review my profile on LinkedIn?

    Hi Kevin,

    You could. I’m curious. How complete is your LI profile?

    Donna

  21. Good Morning, Donna!

    I have a somewhat similar question to what others have asked. I had mailed my resume to a company, and noticed that someone from that company in which I sent my resume to had viewed my LinkedIn profile. I went and viewed theirs and in return they viewed mine again. After much contemplation, I decided to send her an invitation simply stating: Thank you for viewing my LinkedIn profile! I want to connect because I am interested in a career with XYZ Company. They had accepted my invitation and connected with me. They then again viewed my profile again. Should I say anything and how would I go about this, phone, inmail, etc?

    It seems like they are interested because they keep viewing my profile.

    What are your thoughts?

    Hi Kristin,

    Your question makes me wonder how complete your profile is. If it’s complete, and by that I mean it contains your resume and contact information, they’ll call you if they’re interested (see comments from recruiters above). If it’s incomplete, complete it so you won’t have to wonder about this.

    Kind regards,

    Donna

  22. Just wanted to let you know Donna that I tried this. A decision maker at a company I recently applied to viewed my profile on LinkedIn. I thought it would be a great way to connect, reiterate my excitement for the opportunity, and be proactive. Well, first I tried sending an invite with the message, but LinkedIn’s system only allowed me one sentence. Then I tried sending an InMail, but I would’ve had to upgrade my LinkedIn profile to a paid account. Then I tried sending an invite again, and instead of giving me the opportunity to change the message the system just sent an invite with the generic LinkedIn text.

    So I wouldn’t assume that every time a recruiter or hiring manager gets a generic LinkedIn invite it’s because the user was too lazy to write a thoughtful note. Just wanted to share another perspective as I assume a lot of job searchers don’t pay for Pro LinkedIn accounts.

    Hi Mandi,

    I’m curious. Were you on your phone?

    Thank you,

    Donna

  23. Hi Donna,

    love your posts very useful. What would you recommend I do in this situation : I applied via Linkedin a week ago, then the recruiter sent me an invite to connect, which I accepted of course but then nothing. I want to follow up on my application but I’m not sure how to do that effectively without being stalkerish. Can you help ?

    Thank you

    Hi Sally,

    Thank you. You can follow up with one phone call without being a stalker.

    Donna

  24. Dear Donna,
    thanks for your advice and recommendations!
    I accepted an invitation from a recruiter without being interested in new opportunities right now – I’m very happy with my work ..
    Just a day later she asked if we can chat about new opportunities etc …

    Actually I’m wondering a) how to deal with recruiters invitations ? Accept even without certain interest? ( I thought this connection is maybe good for later..) B) how to react to the email?
    I feel a little bit sorry that she spent time for nothing..:(

    Thanks a lot!
    Jules

    Hi Jules,

    I would modify one of the notes above and send it to her. Go ahead and connect if you think the two of you might have a mutually beneficial connection at some point.

    Donna

  25. Dear Donna,

    A really helpful article. I stumbled upon it while researching for a tip that could guide me towards reaching out to someone on LinkedIn.

    I have over years read a lot of “TO-DOs” and “Don’t Dos” articles related to LinkedIn and have adopted many of the tips and advice. I have now managed to connect to around 2000+ professionals in my field. On a periodic basis I go through the profiles of my connections-be it professionals in my field or hiring managers/recruiters. etc

    I wondered if you could suggest how best to reacquaint yourself with an old connection-with the agenda of them noticing u again, and perhaps contacting you for any present or future opportunities. I believe recruiters might be having a huge database of candidates on and off LinkedIn and it is highly probable that they might overlook your profile-during a particular search.

    Any tips of how to proceed with this?

    Thanks
    Zinnia 🙂

    Hi Zinnia, I assume you’re talking about an old recruiting contact here. I would call them to let them know you’re interesting in hearing about opportunities. Kind regards, Donna

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