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For the last two years, our team has monitored the outreach from Recruiters to a FICTIONAL passive candidate we created on LinkedIn. Our team knew that demographically, our fictional Jane Doe – a female Java Developer with experience at big-name companies – would be in high demand to hungry recruiters. What we didn’t anticipate was the nearly 300 messages and job offers from recruiters at Fortune 500 companies.

In today’s talent shortage, it’s become accepted – sometimes even encouraged – behavior for a recruiter to make contact with the candidate at any means necessary. Often this can mean being deceptive, devious, and dishonest in order to make an impact and solicit a response.

Recruiters must keep in mind that the candidate comes first. Our findings offer solutions for common issues with recruiter outreach and strategies to alleviate the disconnect between candidates and recruiters amid today’s competitive market.