RE: ethical consulting practices?

Subject: RE: ethical consulting practices?
From: "Jeanne A. E. DeVoto" <jaed -at- jaedworks -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 3 Dec 1999 19:22:25 -0800

At 6:51 PM -0800 12/3/99, Andrew Plato wrote:
>> One of the biggest "traps" or "tricks" that recruiters use nowadays
>> is asking "have you had any interviews at any other companies?"
>> Frankly, that's none of their business. Period.
>Wrong. This is absolutely the agency's business. If you want to use the
>services of a recruiter, then you need to be honest with them about where you
>are interviewing.

I've written about this before, but I'll reiterate: there's a far chasm
between being honest when a recruiter is about to submit you for a
position, and giving that recruiter all details of your job search. Those
details *aren't* any of the agency's business unless the agency represents
you exclusively, a vanishingly rare arrangement in tech contracting.

Jobseekers should be aware of the problem of double submission, and be
prepared to help the agency avoid it. That generally doesn't mean telling
each recruiter every detail of your search, though. When a recruiter is
asking to submit your resume for a specific position, an alert should go
off in your head if it's similar to one you're already going for. A few
discreet questions and answers between you and the recruiter usually are
enough to figure out whether it's the same job.

This is not all that difficult, and it doesn't require either the agency to
disclose its entire client list, or the contractor to disclose all details
of the job search. I've never gotten flak about this approach from any
ethical agency.

>If you are not willing to help the recruiter do his/her job,
>then why should they help you get a job. You have to give a little before you
>can take.

Now that's just plain silly. Recruiters don't help you get a job out of the
goodness of their hearts, or because you're such good chums that you'll
help them do a little free industry research. They help you get a job
because they get paid by client companies to find and place people with
your skills. The company is the client, your willingness to contract is the
product, and if the placement and job go well, all parties benefit -
without any need for shenanigans or weird little guilt trips.

jeanne a. e. devoto ~ jaed -at- jaedworks -dot- com
Morning people may be respected, but night people are feared.

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