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  • Writer's pictureKelly Adams

How I Reach Out to Recruiters on LinkedIn


A woman is on her laptop on an online meeting

A few weeks ago I decided to reach out to recruiters/hiring managers. I've heard great results from my network and I wanted to give it a try. I was focusing on networking with other data professionals, creating portfolio projects and posting on LinkedIn. This is an experiment for my job search. Testing what works and doesn't. At this point anything helps. Since I made a post about this I've gotten a few questions on how I reach out. I'll be going into my two main methods below along with my results.


I have two approaches for contacting recruiting/hiring managers:

  1. First apply for a job then message the relevant person (usually whoever posted the job on LinkedIn); or

  2. Reach out to recruiters that work for companies I'm interested in and hire for the type of jobs I want (e.g. data analyst).

As a note I've never been a recruiter or have hired for a role. This is based on advice I've seen from other people in my LinkedIn connections and stories I've heard from my network. And while I'm talking about recruiters the same idea and methods can be used to find the hiring manager for a position.


My Approaches

Below I go into my two approaches. For each I include: (1) how I find the recruiter/hiring manager and; (2) how I make the initial contact.


1 Apply for a job first then reach out

In this scenario I've already applied to a job either on Indeed and LinkedIn. Both are my main sites I apply to. Then I look to connect with the recruiter or hiring manager.


How I find the recruiter

If I apply on LinkedIn first I always check to see if the job posters profile is provided. If it isn't shown or I apply on another site like Indeed I go to the company page on LinkedIn. Then search in the people section on the company page. I look for either the department that's hiring and type in "marketing" and search for the hiring person there. Or I type in "recruiter" and scroll through the people that show up. Before I reach out to the recruiter I make sure they hire for the role I'm interested in. I wouldn't message a recruiter that focuses on administrative if I'm looking for a data job. This information can usually be found somewhere in their profile. If not you can make your best guess here.


How I reach out

Once I've found this person there's two ways I've used. One is connecting first using a personalized invite and the other is if you have LinkedIn Premium.


Personalized Invites

Connect with the recruiter first. I usually add a personalized invite (these are limited to 300 characters) to them explaining why I want to connect. In this case it would be something like:


Hi Jane. I saw you posted about a data analyst position with [company name]. I applied to the position. I would love to work for [company] because [reason]. [Something we have in common or why I’d be a good fit for the job]. I would love to connect and chat more about the position. Thank you – Kelly


Then if they connect with me I send a follow up message depending on their response. Usually it's them confirming a time to talk/chat or answer any questions. But if that isn't the case I will send something like this (which is similar to the template for my LinkedIn Mail:


Thanks for connecting with me Jane! As I said before I applied for the data analyst position at [company] (link to job post or job post ID). I'm interested in joining the company because [reason].


A bit about myself :

  • [1st experience related]

  • [2nd experience related]

  • [3rd experience related]

I'd be happy to talk more about how I could help your team or answer any questions you may have. Please let me know if there's anything else you'd like to know about me or my work. I can send my resume if you need it.


Looking forward to hearing from you. Thank you!


Kelly Adams


LinkedIn Premium

Using LinkedIn InMail (included with LinkedIn Premium) I send the following message to the person. As a note, I try to make these messages as concise and brief as possible. For the experience sections I only include a sentence or two for each.


Hi Jane,


I saw you're recruiting/hiring for a data analyst role at your company (link to post/job posting). My name is Kelly and I'm currently a tutor at Boosted Learning. I am switching careers to become a data analyst.


I'm interested in joining the [company] because [reason].


A bit about myself:


- [1st experience 𝐫𝐞𝐥𝐚𝐭𝐞𝐝 to the job posting they shared]

- [2nd experience, similar format as above]

- [3rd experience, similar format as above]


I'd be happy to talk more about how I could help your team or answer any questions you may have. Please let me know if there's anything else you'd like to know about me or my work. I can send my resume if you need it.


Looking forward to hearing from you. Thank you!


Kelly Adams


This template was helped created by Diego Granados in his LinkedIn post.


2 Reach out to the recruiter first

In this case I haven't applied to any specific job. I reach out to the recruiter first and see if there's any positions open that I would fit.


How I find the recruiter

My search is based on recruiters that work for companies I'm interested in and recruit for roles I want. I search in two main ways:

  1. Find the company page on LinkedIn and go to the "people" tab. Then I search for the word "recruiter". From there I look at people's profiles to see if they recruiter for the roles I want. For me it's data/business analyst roles. I wouldn't reach out to a recruiter if they only hired engineers. As a note if the recruiter doesn't look like they're that active on LinkedIn I usually don't bother.

  2. I search the word "recruiter" + data/business analyst. Sometimes recruiters post about jobs they're recruiting for or they mention what roles they recruit for. I take a more general approach with this. I do the same thing and check out the profile. I also tend to focus on recruiters that are more local to my area (California). Unless the recruiter hires for remote roles (be sure to double check this).

How I reach out

Once I've found this person I connect with them using a personalized invite. This template is like the one I used above. Except there's no specific job posting associated. The reason why I don't use my InMail in this case is because I like to save those for when there's a specific job posting involved.


Personalized Invites

Below are a few connection requests I've sent:

Hi Jane, I see that you work for [Company]. I've heard [something about the culture] from one/some of my connections. I wanted to reach out because I'm currently switching careers to become a data analyst. I’d love to find out if I may be a fit for any of your current openings. Thank you! - Kelly


Hello Sam, I noticed you're located in [City]. I'm planning on relocating there [timeline]. Currently I'm switching careers and am looking for data/business analyst positions. It would be great if we could connect. Thank you! - Kelly


Hi Sarah, I noticed that we [mention something I have in common]. [Further talk about our shared interest]. I'm currently looking for data/business analyst positions. It would be great if we could connect. Thank you! - Kelly


Then if they connect with me I send a follow up message depending on their response. Usually it's them confirming a time to talk/chat or answer any questions. But if that isn't the case I will send something like this:


Thanks for connecting with me Jane! As I said before I 'm switching careers to become a data analyst. I'm looking for [remote/on-site] roles in [field].


A bit about myself :

  • [1st experience related]

  • [2nd experience related]

  • [3rd experience related]

I'd be happy to talk more and answer any questions you may have. Please let me know if there's anything else you'd like to know about me or my work. I can send my resume/portfolio if you need it.

Looking forward to hearing from you. Thank you!


Kelly Adams

Other Tips

Below are some other random guidelines/tips on reaching out.

  • Every interaction you have makes an impression. Stay professional and friendly.

  • People are busy. If you want to send a reminder message that's okay. But don't spam the person.

  • Sometimes people don't answer. I wouldn't take this too personally. They might not respond for a variety of reasons. If they don't after a reminder message then it's best to move on. I did hear a story from one of my connections that he messaged a recruiter for a job but they didn't respond. But he was moved up in the interview process and he speculates that his message may have helped. Whether or not they respond it may help anyways.

  • While I provided a general template for reaching out (specifically the longer message). Remember you're talking to a person. Focus on having a conversation with them. They're more likely to help if you do this. No need to spam them or sound robotic.

Conclusion

I've reached out to about 20-25 recruiters so far and about 5 have replied. I didn't expect everyone to respond. I was hoping for responses about 20% of the time. I've done a mix of approach # 1 and # 2. But I've noticed more of a response when I send a personalized invite then a follow up message. Then I'm also connected with the person which may help in the future. Overall this has been a good experience and I've had great conversations. I'm going to continue reaching out to recruiters throughout my job search. I'm aiming for at least 2 every weekday. Everything I provided here my own approach and what I've found works for me. Feel free to change and make it your own. Hopefully this helps you on your job search. Feel free to email me at: kelly@kellyjadams.com with your experience.


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