No one likes to be ignored, least of all when it matters most. So why do job seekers get so few replies from recruiters?

Resumes down the drain?

Resumes down the drain?

Dear recruiters of the world,

Job seekers are tired.

  • Tired of spending hours sending you resumes only to never get a response.
  • Tired of having their hopes dashed daily as they continue what seems like an endless job search to nowhere.
  • Tired of getting phone calls years later with job offers that are no longer meaningful to them years later.
  • Tired of believing you can help and never feeling it happen.

The thing is, I know you want to help and can, and not just because you too have all been job seekers in the past.

  • I know you receive never-ending streams of email and resumes and faxes and cover letters and followups and phone calls and snail mail from job seekers.
  • I know that every applicant feels they are perfect for the job cited or any other opening you might have and can’t understand why that’s not the case.
  • I know that for every resume you receive and every candidate who calls, you rarely have a matching opening in your database at that moment in time when the job seeker is hoping for it most.

Job seekers need to know why recruiters are not calling them back.

So let’s end this communications failure.

Let’s end this disconnect.

Here’s how I’m going to help you do it.

Presenting the Bona Fide Recruiter’s Email Auto-response

From now on, use the following message as an automatic email response to every new resume you receive from prospective job inquirers:

Dear [candidate’s name],

Thank you for your email. We sincerely appreciate you taking the time to contact us here at [company name].

Your resume will go into our database where our systems will look for matches with open positions and future openings as they arrive. We will contact you if a match is found and *only* when a match is found, and we’re not just saying that. We succeed when you find work with us, so we’re hoping for a match as soon as possible just like you are.

Due to the number of resumes we receive and the changing nature of our clients’ needs, it can take a surprisingly long time for your resume to appear among the best matches for a position. And the only thing you can do to keep your chances high for a match is to make sure we always have an updated copy of your resume. We wish the process was easier for you but we prefer that you know the truth to keep your expectations realistic.

Before we let you go, here’s a read that makes us laugh and hopefully you will too:

Good luck with your job search,

[recruiter signature]

But will you use it?

If you have integrity as a professional recruiter, you’ll use this message or some variation of it.


Since your clients only pay you when a candidate is found or hired, it’s in your best interests to stay on good terms with as many candidates as possible in case you need them later, and this email does that with its memoriable openness and brutal honesty. You will also distinguish yourself positively by following this best practice.

Become a Bona Fide Recruiter

If you do decide to use this auto-responder message, please tell me so in the comments below and I’ll add you to a Bona Fide Recruiters list that I’ll be compiling for everyone to see. And if you won’t use it, can you tell us why? Do you have other suggestions?

Warmest regards,

Jacob Share

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-- Jacob Share