Often, I get proposals/conversations on LinkedIn that look like this one:


Hi [Name],

Would you consider moving to [location] for a job?

For one of my clients - a manufacturing industry leader - I am looking for a person experienced in working with...


I would like to give you more details over the phone. When could we have a chat?

Kind regards,

Or like this:



I would love to tell you more over the phone. My client is offering a permanent position (it's not a contract) - what do you think about it?


Permanent is nice. But I don't talk over the phone with every recruiter. Give me the financial details of this position, and if I consider the position is worth a calling, we will have a call.


I'm sorry, I can't disclose all the details via linkedin - I hope you understand it.

Naturally, I have nothing against speaking over the phone, but my experience tells me another thing. During my job hunting I made literally hundreds of such calls and 99% of them were not useful. Moreover, I had been charged roaming charges, international call fees, had bad voice quality frustration and similar glitches.

Recently, I decided not to practice such calls anymore. During my extensive experience of calling with recruiters, their voice speeches were by no means more useful than their LinkedIn messages, just generic questions: about my expected salary, have I ever heard about company X and so on. A fair amount of them never bounced me back with call. I tend to think they are not aiming to hire anybody but doing their best to fulfill their KPI (N phone calls to candidates in 1 day, N calls in a week, etc). Am I right?

I spoke to several recruiters where I felt that they had a real interest in me, and these interviews were presumably (but not always) after a long messaging history via private messages. There were a few such occasions, the vast majority of calls were useless.

The question: how to recognize and filter out recruiter calls "just-for-a-show" from real calls with real intention to hire?

UPDATE: proposed question about unsolicited recruiter calls does not fit, as my case is a bit different. The thing that discussed in the above question is cold calls, i.e. calls that are done without previous probes of candidate and without preceded discussion, while my calls are not unsolicited, the recruiters always notice me they want to call.

  • have you tried asking them?
    – Kilisi
    Feb 2, 2020 at 21:49
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    yes, but none of them tells the truth. They always play-act an interest in me
    – Suncatcher
    Feb 2, 2020 at 21:55
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    Recruiters (at least where I live, in the UK) usually get a percentage of your salary for a period and have nothing to gain from calls alone, so it's in their interest to ensure they get a viable candidate without wasting too much of their own time. They may be trying to make sure a real person is behind your profile, or are genuinely bad at their job. I suggest sticking to messaging and rejecting any recruiter who attempts to call you too soon. Just as they screen their candidates, you also have to screen your recruiters.
    – Rei
    Feb 2, 2020 at 23:37
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    Does this answer your question? Preventing unsolicited recruiter calls
    – dwjohnston
    Feb 3, 2020 at 0:23
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    In update I explained why this question does not fit
    – Suncatcher
    Feb 3, 2020 at 9:34

3 Answers 3


If phone calls are an issue, then you can attempt to have the recruiter send you information via email. As a communication channel, it should be secure enough for them not to worry about "LinkedIn" reading their message and its a professional method of communication.

You can also clarify what information they should send you. E.g. Job Title, Pay, Job Type (full time, part time or contract), location. Recruiters usually don't pass you the original offer they have (or you can just contact the company directly) but should have this information readily available. Then you can bulk scan/process/parse your emails to see if you are interested in the job offer.

If they can't send you an email, then its probably not worth your time. Either they have a potential job with a company and are doing pre-scouting (nothing set in stone yet), or they can't be bothered to forward you the requirements for the job which they also received via email (or at least have it written in some document on their computer). Either way, the recruiter probably doesn't have anything solid lined up for you and is just scouting for potential leads (e.g. you reply so they know you are interested in that sort of job and will send more in the future).

In terms of calls, there are a couple of things you should do.

  1. Have the recruiter call you. This way you can avoid any extra charges. If you are worried about your number being sold, simply buy an extra sim and use that number to receive calls. If a recruiter has a job lined up for you, or you are a good fit, they will call you. They make a commission once they fill the job, so if you are a good match, they will contact you.

  2. Don't call international numbers. You should be able to tell if a number is international. There should be an attached country code or it should be in a format you don't recognize. In this case don't call. You don't need to deal with an international recruiter, unless you are looking for a job in a different country (if you are then have them call you, so you save the money).

  3. Don't pick up unknown numbers or suspected calls. If a recruiter calls you, you want to have the ability to call them back. If they hide their number you can't do that. If they are interested in further communications, then it is in their best interest to have a clear and convenient communication channel between you and them.

  • If phone calls are an issue, then you can attempt to have the recruiter send you information via email that is the problem, they don't want to tell smth neither in Linkedin nor in email. Only via call
    – Suncatcher
    Feb 3, 2020 at 9:11
  • Have the recruiter call you. This way you can avoid any extra charges I travel a lot and when they are calling me while I'm overseas, even receiving a call costs me money
    – Suncatcher
    Feb 3, 2020 at 9:12
  • You don't need to deal with an international recruiter, unless you are looking for a job in a different country I do not deliberately search for an international job, it is international recruiters who contact me first very often
    – Suncatcher
    Feb 3, 2020 at 9:14
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    @Suncatcher If only by call then don't bother. They are, 99%, going to tell you amazing things. Writing them down would make you call on them and have proof. Verbal offers are worth the paper they are written on. Feb 3, 2020 at 10:06
  • They are, 99%, going to tell you amazing things it was a joke?)) BTW, Polish recruiters like this ugly practice a lot
    – Suncatcher
    Feb 3, 2020 at 10:27

There are two types of recruiters.

1) They are an employee for a specific company. If they reach out to you it is because they have a specific opening they are trying to fill, and they want to get you to the interview stage.

2) They work for a company that is hired to to find candidates/employees for their clients. They probably are looking for people that they can submit to multiple opportunities. They may have current opportunities, or they might be gathering resumes to use in the near future.

The example message in your question is an example from category 2. Yes, people do find jobs this way. But my personal experience with those from that category has not been good. They make it sound like you could be interviewed in a couple of days, but it always takes longer because they need more approvals even if they have a position right now.

For my most recent job search I avoided all 3rd party recruiters. I either ignored their messages, or if they were persistent, I contacted them once to decline their contact.

You have found that the vast majority of 3rd party recruiters don't work for you, so don't feel bad about rejecting them. Either ignore their contacts, or reject them quickly.

  • The example message in your question is an example from category 2 exactly! I feel that majority of recruiters that resemble the pattern I described were staffing companies. Internal recruiters do not practice that
    – Suncatcher
    Feb 3, 2020 at 11:57

In my experience, the issue comes down to LinkedIn simply having too many of these types of recruiters. For every 1 good interaction I was having, I had about 99 that did not add value. Most recruiters don't seem to even bother to actually read your profile, and some will even send me messages that were so clearly copy-pasted that they forgot to swap out the last person's name with mine.

If you're fishing in a pond that is oversaturated with recruiters trying to meet KPIs, those are what you're going to catch. You can try adding a quick note on your profile saying you'd like to discuss salary and other details ahead of time, but in my experience that doesn't really help because again, these KPI seeking recruiters don't seem to actually read profiles.

What I have done about this, which you understandably might not be willing to do, is delete my LinkedIn profile. This has forced recruiters to find me though other channels, and while the quantity of recruiters engaging me is definitely lower, the quality is much higher.

Note: if you are currently underemployed, deleting your LinkedIn may not be the best idea. In that case, you may need to just put up with lousy recruiters. In my situation, I am happy at my current place of employment and not actively seeking a new job, but I am open to new opportunities. For me in that situation, LinkedIn just wasn't working out.

  • Yes, deleting profile is too dramatic for me :) I'd rather being more picky in communicating with recruiters, but I want to know how. I am also not actively seeking now, but it happens that very tasty offerings arise in LI, so it worth monitoring. In our region the market is not so hot as in US, so all channels matter
    – Suncatcher
    Feb 3, 2020 at 13:55

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