Tips for Texting With Recruiters

business woman texting
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Before you start your job hunt, brush up your texting skills. More than 60 percent of hiring managers have communicated with job candidates via social media or text, according to one survey.

Keep a Professional Tone

You will show yourself at your best if you maintain a degree of formality and professionalism in all your communications with a recruiter, regardless of the tools you are using. Many use a casual tone for texting. You need to lift it up a notch when you're talking to a recruiter or any other professional connection.

Don't Initiate Contact by Text

Generally, you should not be the one to initiate the contact with a job recruiter or potential employer through a text message. Communicate by email or phone when you need to. Your first contact should not come by text. Your follow-up after an interview should not arrive by text.

However, if a recruiter reaches out to you by text, then they will expect a text in return.

Use Business Standards

Your text message should be correct in every detail and as carefully written as any business communication with someone you don't know well.

  • Spell out all your words, using no abbreviations or acronyms.
  • Don't use any emoticons.
  • If you have a text "signature" that is sent at the bottom of every text message, make sure it's appropriate for use in a professional communication.
  • Check and re-check your spelling, grammar, and punctuation, and watch out for auto-correct errors.

Get Your Message Across

You want to keep your text message as short as possible, but don't be afraid to convey information that will heighten the recruiter's interest in you.

  • Express enthusiasm for the opportunity you're writing about, just as you would in person.
  • Briefly mention the qualifications or experience that make you ideal for the job.
  • Before you hit send, check that you're sending the text to the right person.

Stand By to Respond

After you send your text, make sure you're ready to respond as needed.

  • Promptly reply to any questions asked by return text.
  • If the recipient responds at all, a simple "thank you" for the response can be a polite gesture.
  • Make sure your voicemail message sounds professional, just in case the person decides to call you back rather than texting.
  • If you prefer contact by text, consider writing "Text Messages Accepted" next to your cell number on your resume.

Above all, don't worry that following these rules will make you sound like a cold fish. Your first few contacts with a job recruiter should show you to be professional. And that's true no matter what tools you use to communicate.