Earlier this week, one of my resume clients asked me, “Should I connect with recruiters on LinkedIn?”
I said, “Absolutely!”
How to Connect with Recruiters on LinkedIn — the Warm-Up
But first, the warm-up.
Before you start reaching out:
- Optimize your profile to attract recruiters and stop them from finding other candidates via your profile.
- Follow the recruiter’s company on LinkedIn.
How to Find Recruiters
If you’re saying, “OK, that’s done, but how do I find recruiters?” read this post. It tells you everything you need to know about finding recruiters.
How to Connect with Recruiters — 2 Approaches
Then, when you’re ready, you can take one of 2 approaches to connect with recruiters:
I outline how to do both below.
How to Connect with Recruiters on LinkedIn — Cautious
If you’re feeling cautious, InMail the recruiter with the following message:
I understand you conduct national searches for CFOs. I’m a CFO and thus would like to connect with you here on LinkedIn.
With your permission, I will send you an invitation to connect.
If that works, would you please let me know via your reply to this message?
When I get a message like that, I always reply, “Happy to connect,” and then accept the invitation when it comes through.
How to Connect with Recruiters on LinkedIn — Bold
If you don’t like the 2-step, cautious approach, the single-step, bold option is to send the recruiter an invitation to connect, along with the following message:
I understand you conduct national searches for CFOs. I’m a CFO and thus would like to connect with you on LinkedIn.
Thanks in advance,
Send your invitation via the Connect button on the recruiter’s profile:
- Press “Connect.”
- If you don’t see a “Connect” button, click on the 3 dots to the right of the person’s photo.
- Press “Connect.”
- Press “Add a note.”
- Add your note and send your invitation.
When I recruited, I also accepted those invitations.
Now, here’s a pro tip:
Check the recruiter’s profile for signs of life:
- Are they a Premium member with a gold “In” badge to the right of their name?
- Does their profile show any recent activity?
If not (many don’t), they might have researchers, sourcers, or junior recruiters who spend their time on LinkedIn while the recruiter works with clients and candidates. If that’s the case, try to find those people and connect with them too.
Stay Out of Jail
When you’re speed-growing your network, you have to be careful to avoid LinkedIn jail.
After I invite someone I don’t know, I give them 30 days to respond, and then I withdraw my invitation.
I keep about 40 outstanding invitations on my account, and I’ve never had a problem with LinkedIn freezing it for spamming potential connections.
I don’t know the upper limit of outstanding invitations, nor do I know how many you can send in 24 hours.
You can test the limits once if you want. If you get frozen, LinkedIn will probably restore your account. I’ve never wanted to go there. I know people who have had their accounts frozen. None of them enjoyed the experience.
What About Unconnecting?
As you grow your network, you might get a few people who make you feel uncomfortable. This post tells you how to unfollow, unfriend, and block people on LinkedIn.
Let’s Connect on LinkedIn
Please 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.
Updated January 2022
© 2013 – 2022, Donna Svei. All rights reserved.
Donna Svei, an executive resume writer and former C-level executive, retained search consultant, and CPA, authors all of AvidCareerist’s posts.
She is a Fast Company Contributor and has written for and been quoted by 100+ business and general media outlets, including Forbes, Inc., Entrepreneur, CNBC, the New York Times, USA Today, Time, US News & World Report, CBS, the BBC, Lifehacker, Social Media Today, IT World, and Business News Daily.
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