How to convince recruiters that you’re the real deal


Invisible man

It must be a nightmare being a professional recruiter.

They juggle the needs of their industry with ever-changing job titles and skill sets. It must be a case of who knows what about what, and what can candidates actually do?

AI is making it hard to prove who really knows their stuff, and there will always be those who talk big but can’t deliver the goods. The job of a pro recruiter is to tell the difference between a chancer and the real deal. I’m not sure I’d be good at that!

If you’re an experienced freelancer, you’ve learned how to hone your message to make your offer simple. I’m a copywriter and podcast producer. My friend is a UX designer. Another friend is a product manager. Another a freelance illustrator. These are obvious titles and are easy to look for. The invisible skills are what makes us experienced, such as an aptitude in digital tools, or organisational skills chiselled to perfection by years of learning new techniques. Skills like these are often hard to demonstrate, especially so if we’re not given the time to do so.

I wrote a list of the tools that I use in my regular podcast production workflow. I have one for copywriting too, but the podcast list reveals a more varied toolset for creating an end product.

I encourage fellow independent freelancers to do the same exercise: List your invisible skills, if only to remind yourself of the process you go through, and the tools you use, to deliver high-quality results for your clients.

If knowledge and experience is hard for recruiters to quantify, let’s practice how we convey our abilities, so they can select the right people for the job.