One of the most common complaints that we hear from contractors/consultants is the inevitable ‘black hole’ of communication when working with agencies. We often hear that contractors agree to be submitted for opportunities, but then don’t hear back from the agency – and even worse, have calls and emails not responded to. While this should be considered unacceptable, there are several factors at play that are often make this unfortunate scenario a reality in today’s market.
The vast majority of large organizations in Toronto are now using VMS providers, which means that the days of being able to provide feedback to candidates or to provide status updates on where things stand with a particular opportunity are virtually over.
This can be extremely frustrating for candidates who are trying to manage multiple interviews and opportunities or who have no idea why they are not securing interviews for roles that they’ve been submitted for. Agencies are required to respond to a huge volume of VMS orders so are often unable to provide updates to candidates – particularly when there is nothing to update.
While we always try to set the expectation that we may not hear back with feedback or next steps unless an interview is granted, we still often get repeated requests for updates. A good recruiter will always respond to an email or call even without having information to provide, but this can be taxing.
We strongly recommend that you take an approach for ongoing communication that will show your interest and keep you top of mind, but not necessarily require a response. This ultimately shows that you remain interested in an opportunity, but have a healthy respect for the volume of work that is being managed on the agency side. Below is a great email template that you can use.
Hi (Recruiter Name),
I wanted to follow up on the opportunity that we spoke about last week. I assume that there hasn't been an update as of yet, but please do let me know if otherwise. I remain interested and available and am open to hearing about any other suitable opportunities that come up.
Thank you, (Your Name)
While all great recruiters will get back to you as soon as they have an update, this simple message demonstrates that you're still interested in the role and that you have an understanding of the situation. Your recruiter will appreciate hearing from you and will surely be grateful for your approach. Remember, how you communicate in these small circumstances could make the difference in whether or not your name gets put forward with future clients.