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So I have been an intern at a company which is a blast to work at. A lot of relative young people who are really willing to help. The boss who is my tutor has dropped several times he wants to hire me and is really happy with the way I fit in.

No problem so far. Yet I have been approached through LinkedIn by a recruiter. He's asking questions regarding my current function and how much I like it at my work. I am curious what he has to say, but I am pretty sure the company I work at will offer me a job.

How can one handle such a situation? Should I keep replying to the recruiter and see what he can offer me? Or should I respect my current work situation and leave him be?

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First things first, the recruiter HASN'T offered you anything as yet! Hence, there is nothing wrong in being in touch with him.

I would suggest the following:

  • Stay in touch with him. Networking helps. If not today, you might require some help someday in future.
  • There is no legal problem involved here. The question is only a moral one. Talking to a recruiter doesn't mean you are doing any injustice to your current role.
  • You haven't got a job at your current place of work as well. Hence, don't prejudge.
  • In case you get a job offer from both the quarters, and if you are happy with your current employer, stick with him. Money does not equate to happiness or contentment (assuming you are getting a higher package from the recruiter).
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    YOU also need to remeber that whileyour boss may want to hire you, that doesnt mean that you will get hired. Sometimes, there is a corporate wide hiring freeze or something else that might affect his ability to hire an additional full-time person. It doesn't hurt to keep your options open and talk to recruiters. – HLGEM Jan 23 '14 at 15:38
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    @JoeStrazzere one of the problems with interns is that they tend to believe that they'll definitely get the job. – Ricketyship Jan 23 '14 at 18:43
  • I took your advice and replied the recruiter. You're right about me not being 100% certain. My boss is setting a cursus for me to be more of an asset of the team as of now, so I am pretty certain I will get the job. But nothing is 100% certain. – Kevin Jan 24 '14 at 13:21
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Ultimately, remember this - most recruiters only care about your interests insofar as they hope to get a nice fee from your next employer. They are just as much about trying to sell jobs to you as they are selling you to jobs.

So by all means stay in touch with them (they might turn out to be a good one, after all), but take every lead with a pinch of salt, and beware that they may overhype your capabilities, talk down your current employer, and misrepresent the jobs market simply to get bums on interview seats. Most importantly, if you are content in your current place of work, enjoy it while it lasts. Don't let a recruiter talk you into being discontented.

  • The recruiter asks what my function is at the company. My boss asked me to leave out the intern description at my function description at LinkedIn, because that would make me less reliable to potential customers. What should I answer? – Kevin Jan 23 '14 at 11:51
  • I don't see any point not being honest with the recruiter. Your boss's concern is that customers don't feel short-changed by knowing they are dealing with an intern; the chance of the recruiter comparing notes with your customers is practically nil. – Julia Hayward Jan 23 '14 at 11:57
  • I agree with Julia, I'd say be honest with the recruiter. It ties in with what Unsung was saying about networking as well. They may be able to help you in the future - you never know - and you should be open with them if you want to build a good relationship. – starsplusplus Jan 23 '14 at 16:11
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I want to say that recruiters are head-hunters. Their job is to fill a role. That doesn't mean that you'll be offered a job. This is more of a hand-out for filling out an application, because they have a position that needs filling. No offense to you or anyone that has had a recruiter contact them via LinkedIn (I have had some too), but they don't really care who you are, they are just doing a simple search for anyone with expertise in a certain area. They send out mass cookie-cutter emails about a job, and asks if you aren't interested to please forward to someone who may fit the role. It's what they get paid for.

  • I'd like to point out that while this can be true near the beginning of your career, it will be increasingly important to maintain good relationships with recruiters as you progress into higher-level positions. Hiring managers and people at the director level (or who aspire to be at this level) particularly need to develop long-term relationships with key recruiters. This helps managers obtain access to the best candidates for openings and has benefits in personal career development as well. – Roger Jan 23 '14 at 18:50

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