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I'm new to utilizing recruiters and had a question.

I had interviews (one phone and then in person) with a company through a recruiter. The recruiter made a couple of mistakes 1) she confused my resume with someone else with the same first name for the initial phone interview and then 2) she mixed us up again for the times we were to have our in person interviews.

The recruiter also kept accidentally calling me instead of the other prospect and leaving messages that I knew were not for me or simply hanging up.

In other words, the recruiter kept making errors. Ones that may have cost me (or the other prospect) from getting the job.

I was told by the recruiter that I didn't get the job because they wanted more experience (it's an entry level position). The recruiter also told me that the company is not working with the recruiting firm any longer.

Neither of us got the job because I see the exact position on LinkedIn and via the company and not a recruiter.

My question: would it be ethical to re-apply for this position? I really liked the culture and the location. Should I even bother?

marked as duplicate by IDrinkandIKnowThings, gnat, Alec, ChrisF, mcknz Aug 28 '15 at 14:12

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  • OK the recruiter made mistakes. But you did get an in person interview and the company decided not to hire you. – paparazzo Aug 24 '15 at 17:45
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    Did you interview with the company at any point last time? Or just with the recruiter? – Brandin Aug 24 '15 at 17:50
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I was told by the recruiter that I didn't get the job because they wanted more experience (it's an entry level position). The recruiter also told me that the company is not working with the recruiting firm any longer.

I'm not sure I agree with the other answers that there is a legal liability if you re-apply directly.

However, you could easily contact the recruiter, indicate that since the recruiter told you you didn't get this job and that he is no longer working with the firm, that you feel free to apply for another position directly. Unless you hear back quickly from the recruiter, you should assume there is no liability involved.

Then, go ahead and apply on your own via whatever mechanism is indicated in LinkedIn.

Note that you don't actually know if this is the same position or not, unless there is a matching Requisition or Job Number or such. So treat this like you would a new application for an entry-level position.

Or as @keshlam points out, you could ask if this is a new position, or you could save one round of correspondence and include your resume with that query. "Hi, I saw that you are again (or is it still?) looking for... I'm still available, and still interested. Here's a fresh copy of my resume, in case you need it."

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    That last was the point I wanted to make. It may be for an equivalent position elsewhere in the company... or it might not be. You could ask, or you could save one round of correspondence and include your resume with that query. "Hi, I saw that you are again (or is it still?) looking for... I'm still available, and still interested. Here's a fresh copy of my resume, in case you need it." – keshlam Aug 24 '15 at 17:47
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    Yeah, there are also a variety of reasons they might relist it too. They may want to completely sever the relationship with the recruiter (so new req/job number helps this) etc. All sorts of "hr inefficiency" reasons... – enderland Aug 24 '15 at 18:06
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I don't think it's unethical to re-apply for the position, but depending on what the company's original perception of you as a candidate was it could potentially make you look bad.

Basically you're counting on the fact that the recruiter screwed up the presentation of you as a candidate. What you absolutely CANNOT do is attempt to hide in anyway that you were already put forward for the position. It should be front and center in your cover letter. State what happened, and exactly why you think you might not have gotten fair consideration and that you're very interested in a job there. If, despite the recruiters worst efforts, the company still gave you full consideration and ultimately passed, you've probably sunk any chance of ever getting hired there, but that's probably a risk worth taking.

If the company hires you they are probably also legally obligated to pay the finders fee to the recruiting firm, but that would be a question of ethics for the company and not you.

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    I doubt that displaying enthusiasm and determination will ever sink his chances of being hired, especially if he articulates the situation well. It may or may not help, in fact. Even if it doesn't help now, I doubt any company worth its salt will automatically dismiss you if you apply for a different position later. Companies aren't in the habit of declining good candidates just because they've been unsuccessful in different circumstances. – Jon Story Aug 24 '15 at 19:08
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    Be clear in your cover letter that you previously worked with the recruiter who you believe did not properly present your skills and now since you and the company have both severed that relationship you would like the opportunity to apply again. Note, you should read what, if anything, you may have agreed to with the recruiter about applying somewhere they represent. I had this with one agency I worked with. if this is the case, it's now more a legal question that you will need to consult a lawyer about untangling. – Bill Leeper Aug 24 '15 at 21:35
  • I don't see an ethics issue here. The recruiter no longer represents the company. The recruiter also couldn't get their candidates straight, which is probably why the recruiter lost the company. For all intents and purposes the recruiter completely failed at their job. If I was the OP I would apply directly to the company and wouldn't even mention having worked with that recruiter before. – NotMe Aug 24 '15 at 21:45
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You might think about contacting people in the company through linked-in (look for in-house HR people, as they are always willing to get new connections, also try to connect with supervisors) and tell them that you interviewed with the company recently and really liked the idea of working there, and ask if there are any open positions that would fit your skillset.

Once you have made these connections you can ping them every couple of months (assuming the answer to your question was "no") to see if there is another position that has opened up.

If you liked the company, but not enough to work this hard to get in the door then I would advise you to simply move on. There will be other companies, some of which you may like even more.

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The problem is that since you were introduced by the recruiter the company cannot touch you without creating a legal liability. If they hired you without going through the recruiter, they could be sued. I would move on and not waste any more time.

  • I can't see the harm in at least approaching the company. The OP said that the company is no longer working with the recruiting firm, so who knows what contractual rules are still in place. If there is a legal liability, the company will say so when/if the OP contacts them. – David K Aug 24 '15 at 17:19
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    And even if there is a liability, that will likely on extend as far as paying the recruitment company the fee they expected to pay in the first place.... Recruitment company fees are relatively insignificant in even a medium sized company's expenditure. Make sure the employer are aware of the situation and then leave them to the legalities... It's not your contract – Jon Story Aug 24 '15 at 19:09

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