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Managing Recruiters on LinkedIn

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Data Engineer at Financial Company12 days ago

I'm currently at a Tier-3 company with 3.5 YOE and get ~5 recruiters reaching out a week. Some of the messages I can automatically ignore, while some are more compelling. I tend to ignore anything consulting-oriented and am more enticed by the recruiters for specific startups who say something like "come join our series A/B/C startup founded by engineers from Uber/Stripe/Meta! We have $X Million Raised!"

I can only imagine that folks working at Tier 1 or 2 companies must be inundated with these emails and messages all the time and from better companies.

What's good practice and etiquette for handling these? I'm aware of the masterclass on choosing a good team/company and since I'm aiming for Big Tech or Unicorn, it's somewhat helpful in being able to dismiss a lot of postings.

To make this more concrete, I have 2 specific questions:

  1. Is it worth the time responding to recruiters if the answer is no?

  2. If my goal is Tier 1 (MegaCap Companies) and I'm at Tier 3, would it be a lot more helpful to get there via Tier 2 (Unicorns and companies people have heard of)?

    Open to any other thoughts!

1 Like


  • Lee McKeeman
    Staff Eng @ Google, Ex-Meta SWE, Ex-Amazon SDM/SDE
    12 days ago
    1. If it’s 5 per week, I feel like you can answer. “I’m not in the market right now, but good luck on your search!” Is easy. If you want to be specific “I’m not interested in consulting roles right now, but I appreciate the consideration!”. That’s 30 seconds. If you do 5 at the end of the week, that’s 2.5 minutes. Recruiters are valuable connections to have.
    2. Where you’ve worked may affect recruiters, but once you get an interview (via a recruiter connection because you don’t burn bridges), as long as you’ve done complex work, and have the right skills, the interviewers or selection committee won’t care about this Tier stuff.
  • Rahul Pandey
    Tech Lead/Manager at Meta, Pinterest, Kosei
    12 days ago

    I don't reply to recruiters unless it's clear that they actually looked at my profile. If they spent the time to comment on a side project I worked on, a position I have on LinkedIn, or my YouTube channel, they have effectively "earned" my trust that it's a connection I want to make. Perhaps this is a low bar, but connections are free!

    My philosophy with LinkedIn is to blindly accept everyone who sends me a connection request. This will work until I hit 30K connections, which I'll hit in the next month or two.

    When it comes to replying to messages, though, I use the above criteria to see if I should bother replying.

  • Scott Gardner
    Mid-Level Site Reliability Engineer at Ping Identity
    11 days ago

    It's important to keep in mind that Recruiting is a numbers game for the most part, and LinkedIn is actually set up with this in mind - Recruiters have access to things like templates and variable replacement to assist this [1].

    Personally, I'll generally only respond if it's clear that it's not a templated/copy-pasted message. I've got an emoji in my linkedin name that effectively highlights a lot of automated messages.

    1: https://www.linkedin.com/help/recruiter/answer/a412196/create-message-templates-in-recruiter?lang=en

  • temp regex
    Mid-Level Software Engineer at Nike
    4 days ago

    I know i am late to answer this question. But, I too face this, fortunately not sure if you are aware of this, when a recruiter reaches out to me for a job, Linkedin has a feature in their messages which is you can select a “default” accept/reject message or auto decline their message without a formal note, it really helps me to not even type out anything just select one button and the rest is history. Maybe check that out if haven’t yet!

    1 Like