I just formally accepted a written offer from a company.

As a courtesy, I told an external recruiter I was working with on a different firm that I was no longer interested in continuing the interview process with that firm.

He's now asking for the name of the firm I accepted at.

It seems like a reasonable question, but looking at related questions here I'm not entirely sure it's a good idea.

Of course I understand that I don't actually owe him an answer.

Should I answer him?

  • 1
    What is your question? Nov 16, 2015 at 16:26
  • 9
    It is not a good idea. He has not valid reason he needs that information. He may go to the firm and tell them they owe him a commission.
    – paparazzo
    Nov 16, 2015 at 16:32
  • @Wesley Long: thanks. Edited to add actual question. Nov 16, 2015 at 17:50
  • @Frisbee - They could just as easily do that after you change your linkedin information.
    – user8365
    Nov 16, 2015 at 19:57
  • @JeffO If OP had changed LinkedIn recruiter would not be asking for that information.
    – paparazzo
    Nov 16, 2015 at 20:03

2 Answers 2


Just don't answer. He will figure out where you work eventually via LinkedIn or some other source. You are just wasting your time answering him and quite possibly setting yourself up for a conversation with your new HR. They might have to ask you what involvement this person had in you learning about them and getting hired. Much better to have these conversations a month or two later when you are more secure in your position and know people better.

Note: My suggestion would be to not update your LinkedIn (or similar site) information for as long as possible. I would wait at least a month. Also as I said I would simply not reply to the recruiter, much like you fell off the face of the Earth. I think that starting a new job and being excited about learning that new job is a good cover. There is no use in damaging a relationship no matter how superficial it is. It is just easier to do nothing, act like nothing happened, unless that recruiter has your number but that is a different question.


The recruiter DOES have a valid reason to ask this. You have a relationship with him, and even though he didn't manage to close the deal with you, he sees you as a possible in-road to this other company. Recruiting is all about referrals.

If he's a GOOD recruiter, he'll probably even go further and ask who your hiring manager is and how to contact him...to find out if there are more open requisitions! I would not go so far as to hand that info out, if it were me, if something came up, I would pass along his contact info to the hiring manager.

The other answers to this question that raise fears of the other recruiter trying to poach a commission are unfounded. There is either a direct relationship between the recruiter and the hiring company, or there isn't. It isn't a grey area.

  • 6
    The word "valid" here is dependent on your point of view; and I think the only one where it is valid is from the recruiters. I've personally seen recruiters try to sabotage a new hire and I've seen them try to lay claims where none existed.
    – NotMe
    Nov 16, 2015 at 17:11
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    I think all I'm trying to say is that there is zero benefit to the OP for giving out that information while at the same time there is (even if it's slight) a risk to divulging prior to starting the new job.
    – NotMe
    Nov 16, 2015 at 19:33
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    @dwoz That's not entirely true. In Australia for example if somebody is receiving unemployment then the recruiter could claim that they assisted or placed this person into their new position and receive funding from the government. It's quite a well known practice here, and a definite grey area.
    – Michael A
    Nov 17, 2015 at 5:32
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    @emory And if a recruiter is dishonnest and makes you believe the position is perfect and possibly by lying to you... Well they got the bonus and you learned a lesson :)
    – Puzzled
    Nov 17, 2015 at 13:38
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    @emory and NotMe...another point to make is that as a contract developer who works with recruiters every 3-6-12 months...it's awfully nice to think of those recruiters the way you think of, say, your barber...(or, maybe your proctologist?!!!) Someone who is an available resource for you, someone who also looks out for YOU. Being part of a reputable recruiter's "stable of fast horses" makes the whole process so much easier...especially when the hiring managers trust those recruiters. I think that adds LOTS of "valid" to the mix.
    – dwoz
    Nov 18, 2015 at 15:48

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