How to Get LinkedIn Recruiters to Actually Respond to Your Messages

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If you’re looking for a new job, chances are you’ve updated your resume, searched job boards, and begun to network. But don’t overlook the important strategy of connecting with recruiters on LinkedIn.


This approach reaches recruiters where they are. In fact, 87% of recruiters consider LinkedIn to be the best platform for evaluating potential job applicants. It’s a great way for job seekers to expand their network and discover new opportunities. If you’re wondering how to connect with recruiters, read on.

Prepare before reaching out

Before you reach out to a recruiter on any professional networking platform, especially LinkedIn, you’ll want to update your social media profiles. Recruiters check them to see the kind of information you share.


Make sure your LinkedIn profile includes:

  • A professional headshot

  • A high-quality banner

  • An optimized title and headline

  • A full summary

  • An employment history

  • Your educational background and certifications

Let recruiters know you’re open to opportunities by enabling your LinkedIn profile’s “Open to Work” feature.

Connect on other platforms

While the goal is to connect to recruiters on LinkedIn, you may have better results connecting on other platforms, too. If you follow recruiters on X (formerly Twitter), they’ll get a notice mentioning your name. You can like and comment on any business-related posts they make.


Interacting with recruiters on other platforms helps you establish a professional relationship with them, demonstrate your interest in their work, and build credibility with recruiters before reaching out on LinkedIn.


Check that your LinkedIn profile allows others to see your name and headline after viewing their profile. You can enable that option under Settings & Privacy > Profile information > Name, location, and industry.

How to find recruiters on LinkedIn

Once your LinkedIn profile is in tip-top shape, you’re ready to connect with recruiters. Create a list of companies you’d like to work with—10-20 is a good starting point. Look for those whose missions and values align with your beliefs. Also, consider their growth opportunities, industry reputations, and whether they allow remote work (if that’s a priority for you).


You can find the company pages using the LinkedIn search bar. Then, click the People tab to see all of the people who work there and have a LinkedIn profile. Click All filters and scroll down to the keyword section.


Under Title, you can type in common recruiter job titles, such as:

  • Talent acquisition

  • Recruiter

  • Recruitment manager

  • Head of talent

  • Hiring manager

  • HR manager

  • Headhunter

Then, choose the recruiter for your desired role and location.

How to connect with LinkedIn recruiters

Before you can message a recruiter, you’ll need to connect with them first. To do this:

  1. Go to the profile of the person you’d like to connect with.

  2. Click Connect located in the Introduction section.

  3. Click Add a note in the pop-up window.

  4. Write a personalized message in the text box.

  5. Click Send invitation.

Connection requests have a character limit of 300, so make each word count. Briefly introduce yourself and include a call to action (CTA) like “Let’s connect.” There’s no need to include lengthy details about your background—the recruiter can see that in your profile.


Some people like to use LinkedIn message templates. These suggest a choice of standard messages to use with a connection invitation. While adding a message to an invitation request is helpful, pasting a generic message isn’t the best approach for reaching out to a recruiter on LinkedIn. Create your own message or customize the template so it stands out from the crowd.


Check to see if the recruiter’s profile mentions details about the positions they’re recruiting for, such as type, location, or client. Choose recruiters who recruit for your desired position, or ask to be referred to the correct person.


Before sending a message, see if they list an email in their profile. If so, contact them by email. If you have something in common, like attending the same college, mention that in your message.


For example, you might say:

  • Hello, ____, greetings from a fellow Wildcat. I am a (title) in the (city) area looking for an opportunity in (industry). It would be great to know if I’m a fit for any of your job openings. I can also connect you with others in my field. Let’s connect.

  • Hi ____, I see you work with (company) here in (city). I am a (title) at ___ and thinking of making a move. May I send you my resume? Let’s connect.

  • Hi _____, I’m reaching out because I’m exploring new opportunities. I’m a (title) with (number) years of experience and looking for a new challenge. If you have time, let’s discuss whether I am a fit for any positions you’re filling.

Proofread your message carefully and use spelling and grammar software like Grammarly to correct any errors.

How to write your LinkedIn message

Once the recruiter accepts your connection request, it’s time to craft your LinkedIn recruiter message.


To start, it should include:

  • A thank-you for accepting the request

  • Your interest in a specific role

  • An attached resume (customized to highlight the skills required for the job)

  • Whether you have already applied online

  • A CTA such as asking to schedule a call

Some things you probably don’t want to do when messaging recruiters:

  • Don’t send a message just to say hello

  • Don’t send a generic message that isn’t customized to the specific job and recruiter

  • Don’t send a long message talking about yourself

  • Don’t forget to proofread your message

Subject line examples

The subject line of your LinkedIn message should be clear and concise. Lengthy titles can distract from the main purpose of your message, so it’s best to avoid them. To help you get started, a few examples of subject lines you can use are:

  • Experienced [Your Role] Seeking [Industry] Opportunities

  • Passionate [Your Profession] Interested in [Company Name]

  • Let’s Connect on [Field] Opportunities at [Company Name]

  • Skilled [Your Role] Open to Work in [Industry]

  • Dedicated [Your Role] Seeking Growth Opportunities

Body example

The body of your LinkedIn message should state your interest in their open job opportunities. Keep the formatting concise and professional, highlighting the value you could bring to their network. Here are some tips to help you write an effective message:

  • Begin with a polite introduction.

  • Mention what caught your interest about their profile.

  • Briefly outline your relevant skills and achievements.

  • Express enthusiasm about the possibility of collaborating.

Personalize your message to show that you’ve taken the time to research their profile and company. In addition, fix any grammatical errors.


Here is a sample message:


Dear [Recruiter’s Name],


I appreciate you connecting with me. I notice you specialize in hiring candidates in [Field], and I’m looking for new opportunities. I have [X] years of experience in [Field] with a focus on [Skills].


Can you tell me more about what your clients are looking for in a candidate or if there are any open positions you think I would be a good fit for? Depending on your availability, I’d be happy to chat over a virtual meeting next week.


I am looking forward to your response.


Thank you,


[name]


[phone]


[email]

Closing examples

End your message with a CTA that invites further discussion. You could propose a meeting or a call to discuss the opportunity or ask a question to prompt a response.


Below are examples of effective closing lines you can use in your LinkedIn recruiter message:

  • I look forward to discussing this opportunity further. Please let me know a convenient time to chat over a virtual meeting.

  • Would you be open to scheduling a call to discuss opportunities that match my experience?

  • Are there still positions available at [Company Name] that align with my skills? I’m eager to explore opportunities with your team.

  • Let’s set up a meeting to discuss how I can contribute to [Company Name]’s success. Is there a time next week that works for you?

8 Best sample messages to use on LinkedIn

Based on the guidelines above, here are a few message examples below to get you started. Begin with a greeting to address the recruiter. “Dear” is the preferred professional greeting, but “Hello” and “Hi” can work, too, if you’re looking to convey a more conversational tone.

Sample 1. Message regarding a posted position

Hi _______, thanks for connecting. If you have time, I hope we can discuss how my experiences fit the _____ position. I’ve already applied online. Attached is my resume. I hope to talk soon.


Best regards,


[name]


[phone]


[email]

Sample 2. Message regarding an internship

Dear _______, I am a sophomore majoring in ______________ at __________ University. I’d like to develop my skill set in a professional environment. Do you have any openings for interns this summer?


I’ve been following [company name] on LinkedIn for some time. Your work in [project type] is well respected. I’ve attached my resume for your review. I hope to hear from you soon.


Sincerely,


[name]


[phone]


[email]

Sample 3. Message to an independent recruiter

Hi ____, my name is __________. I’m a [title] at [corporation]. I’m interested in exploring new opportunities in [business sector]. Please review my attached resume and LinkedIn profile to see if my experience matches any of your current openings. Can we touch base by phone to discuss? I look forward to connecting with you.


Kind regards,


[name]


[phone]


[email]

Sample 4. Message when there’s no opening posted

Dear ________, thanks for connecting. I’m a [title] with [X] years of experience in [area of expertise]. I’ve heard wonderful things about [company name]. If you have any openings in [desired department], I’d appreciate the chance to discuss how my background could be a good fit. Enjoy your day.


Kind regards,


[name]


[phone]


[email]

‍Sample 5. Message when interested in an older posting

Hi __________. I am interested in the _____ position that [company] advertised on [name of website]. I noticed the ad was placed a month ago. Can you tell me if the position has been filled? If you’re still taking applications, I’ll apply. Thanks for your help.


Sincerely,


[name]


[phone]


[email]

Sample 6. Message when transitioning to new industry

Dear ________,


I appreciate you connecting with me on LinkedIn. I am reaching out because I am currently exploring opportunities in [new industry] where I can apply my skill set in ________. I notice you have ________ years of experience in the industry, so your advice would be greatly appreciated as I navigate this transition. Would you be available to discuss potential roles in [new industry]?


I look forward to hearing from you.


Best regards,


[name]


[phone]


[email]

Sample 7. Message when interested in learning more about a role

Dear ______,


I came across your LinkedIn job posting for the ______ position and am interested in learning more about this opportunity. I’m confident I would be an excellent addition to your team, as the job description aligns with my skill set.


Could you provide me with some more details about the day-to-day responsibilities in the role? I’d also be happy to share more about my background and skills.


Thank you for your time.


Kind regards,


[name]


[phone]


[email]

Sample 8. Message when interested in a company’s culture

Hi _____,


After reviewing [Company Name]’s profile and mission, I found that your values resonate with my beliefs and skill set. With _______ years of experience in the _______ industry, I want to advance my career. Could you provide more insights into [Company Name]’s culture, such as communication style and how they support employee well-being?


Hope to hear from you soon.


Sincerely,


[name]


[phone]


[email]

How to follow up with a recruiter

Not every message you send to a recruiter will get an answer, no matter how well you write it. You should follow up with a recruiter periodically.


Whether you’re interested or not, respond to recruiters promptly and appropriately. If a recruiter contacts you about an opening and you’re still interested, ask to schedule a call for more information.


If you’re not interested, thank the recruiter and let them know what you’re looking for. Say something like, “Thank you for reaching out. The manager position isn’t quite for me. With my skills and experience, I’m looking for a director-level position.”


Some recruiters may send you generic responses like, “Thanks, I’ll keep your resume on file.” Don’t be discouraged. Recruiters can receive hundreds of messages and job applications weekly—they can’t personally reply to each one.


If you’ve applied but haven’t heard back, wait two weeks before sending a follow-up message—but check the job listing first. Some recruiters ask candidates not to send a follow-up email. If it’s OK to follow up, send a message like:


Hi ______. I applied to the ______ position a couple of weeks ago. I wonder if you can share the timeline for your hiring process. I’m very interested in this opportunity and appreciate any updates you can provide.


Best,


[name]


[phone]


[email]


If you haven’t heard back after two follow-ups, move on. It’s time to find another opportunity.


As for recruiters who haven’t responded or recommended any jobs, only check in with them every couple of months. If you come across a thought-provoking article about their industry, you could send them a link with a brief note: “Did you see this? I thought you’d be interested.”

More tips to make your LinkedIn message successful

Below are some additional tips to improve your message:

  • Personalize it. To make a good first impression on a recruiter, personalize your message by reading their profile and finding something you have in common or that you appreciate about their experience in the industry. This can demonstrate your genuine interest in the opportunity.

  • Keep it concise. Avoid lengthy messages that go too deep into your experience and skills. Keep it brief, only including information about your overall industry experience and what you hope to achieve from this connection.

  • State your intentions. Tell the recruiter what you’re looking for. Ask specific, direct questions to gather the information you need.

  • Conclude with a clear CTA. Suggest a phone call, email, or virtual meeting to move the conversation forward.

  • Use a professional tone. Write just as you would speak during an interview or at work. Avoid using slang or informal language.

  • Include a compelling subject line. Keep your subject line brief and to the point. Consider mentioning your industry or current role and your openness to opportunities.

  • Reference mutual connections. If possible, reference a shared connection to create a more personalized interaction.

  • Highlight mutual benefits. Briefly mention why you’d be an asset to the team, whether because of your years of experience, skill set, or background in the industry. Mentioning your skills helps the recruiter envision how you would fit within the team.

  • Proofread before sending. Review your message to make sure the grammar and formatting are correct.

  • Follow up, but don’t spam. Follow up to let the recruiter know you’re still interested in the position, but only follow up once. Spamming the recruiter could cause them to ignore your message or even block your account.

You can also occasionally comment on recruiters’ LinkedIn or X (formerly Twitter) posts. Your LinkedIn posts will show up on their LinkedIn newsfeed if you’re connected, so it also helps to write posts on your industry or share relevant articles.

Seek expert help to make your LinkedIn profile stand out

Contacting recruiters on LinkedIn can be an effective part of your job search strategy. The first step is optimizing your social media so recruiters can find you.


This article originally appeared on Upwork.com Resource Center (Upwork is a company that helps businesses find talent and people find work) and was syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

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