Recruiters' Biggest Pet Peeves & How to Avoid Them

Pain points that make a recruiter’s job more challenging

September 9, 2021

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Every industry and every job type has its own set of pet peeves. Things you encounter, sometimes on a daily basis, that make your head spin. Job seekers and hiring managers beware; recruiters have their own set of pain points. Just as it’s important to know what to do, it’s also important to know what to avoid while applying, interviewing, or hiring as recruiters are usually your first point of contact for your potential dream job or dream candidate.

On Resumes & Applications

Overly Creative Resumes

Everyone wants to stand out, especially when you’re looking for a new job. Be careful and put some thought into your resume’s design. It’s definitely a trend now to play with the traditional layout and add in colors or a funky design but don’t go overboard! If your resume is at all confusing, it will quickly be passed over. Remember, sometimes less is more. And on that point, a friendly reminder that your resume should ideally fit on one page, or two pages max!

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When Candidates Apply in Bulk

This is something recruiters hate to see because it indicates the candidate doesn’t know what they are looking for and/or isn’t paying close attention to job descriptions. How is it possible that a candidate could be right for a marketing position, a sales position, and an accounting position all at the same company? Job seekers, remember: It’s very likely that the same recruiter will be seeing all of your applications for one company.

Misspellings and Poor Grammar

The saying goes, you only get one chance to make a first impression. If your resume or application is riddled with errors, or even a few, this reflects on your attention to detail and makes you seem like a careless candidate. If you are applying for a competitive role, a typo or two gives the recruiter or hiring manager an easy reason to pass on you. Proofread your work multiple times and always get a second set of eyes on anything before you submit.

For Interviews

When Candidates Cancel Last Minute

Canceling day-of, and worse, less than an hour before an interview, is bad manners unless you have an actual emergency. As a candidate, if you get cold feet about the job itself, or feel anxious about interviewing, look at the experience as good practice in the long run. Just because you schedule one interview doesn’t mean you’ll have to take the job if it’s offered. If you’re nervous and the interview doesn’t go perfectly, look at it constructively and consider how you can improve for the future. You can always ask the interviewer for feedback and this reflects positively on you as a candidate.

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When Candidates Don’t Do Their Homework

This is a big no-no for recruiters because not only does it reflect poorly on the candidate, it makes them look bad with the hiring manager as well. As a candidate, always research the company before the interview. Hopefully, they will also carefully review the job description and skills required. Another tip from recruiters: Review common interview questions and roughly outline answers in your head. If you are nervous or uncertain about what to expect, practice with a colleague or friend!

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In Working with Hiring Managers

When Hiring Managers Don’t Know What They’re Looking For

Recruiters can’t recruit if they don’t know what to look for. Before beginning a search, hiring managers should meet with your recruiters to formulate a solid job description and skills list. Come with what qualities will make for a successful hire and what should be avoided.

Check out our tips for building better relationships with hiring managers.

When Clients or Hiring Managers Don’t Provide Helpful Feedback

Feedback is essential to a recruiter finding you the right talent. Recruiters love to hear what hiring managers liked or disliked about a candidate so they can make adjustments to their search. If you are a hiring manager, communicate with the recruiter on the candidates themselves without piling on too many new requirements. A few tweaks here and there are helpful, but veering too far from the original job description indicates that you weren’t sure about what you wanted to begin with. Which brings us to our last point…

When Hiring Managers Take Forever to Reply

Recruiters can only work as quickly as hiring managers do. Everyone wants the open position filled as soon as possible, which can become a challenge if hiring managers take days to reply to interview scheduling emails, feedback requests, or offer negotiations. Responsive hiring managers and clear communication is key to ensuring your company doesn’t lose its favorite candidates to other job offers.

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Between job seekers and hiring managers, recruiters have a lot of expectations to manage. Job seekers can avoid missing out on great opportunities by steering clear of recruiters’ pet peeves. Most of these are simple mistakes that can be avoided with attention to detail and respect for others. For hiring managers, avoiding the above pitfalls will help recruiters help them throughout the hiring process! Keeping an open line of communication will go a long way in building trust with recruiters, improving workflows, and hiring top candidates.

Recruiters, if you want to avoid other pet peeves that come with the job, like having 200+ tabs open at once or working late hours in order to source enough candidates for your roles, reach out to us! Fetcher will save you time and energy by sourcing candidates for you and automating your outreach, so you can focus on hiring strategies and candidate engagement.


Check out our other blog posts for more talent acquisition tips and insights into recruiting trends.

About Fetcher

At Fetcher, our mission is to introduce companies to the people who will help them change the world. Our full-service, recruiting automation platform automates those repetitive, top-of-funnel tasks, so you can focus more on candidate engagement & team collaboration. Simplify Sourcing. Optimize Outreach. Hire Top Talent. Learn more at fetcher.ai.

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