So, I've been getting a variety of emails attempting to recruit me for years. Some are worth responding to; others are clear misfits, or look like the sender never actually read my LinkedIn profile. This I understand.

But over the past year or so, I've been getting repeated low quality recruitment emails from the same source, with the followups having text like "Just wanted to follow up one last time to see if you would be interested in hearing more about xxxxx! Please let me know and I would be happy to set up a quick chat!" It's not one recruiter or one company, and it's in-house recruiters as well as body shops. The main thing they have in common is that the original email feels generic, or in some cases is peddling obviously unsuitable positions.

What I'm wanting to understand is when and why recruiters send these emails. Does it imply anything about their difficulty in filling the position(s) they are peddling? Does it imply anything about their evaluation of the email recipient (me)? Or is it most likely just that they've adopted a new (and annoying) practice of retries even for generic stable-building, perhaps encouraged by some new recruiting software package?

[Edit: I'm asking about the meta-recruiter spam in particular - spam encouraging me to respond to earlier spam from the same recruiter. Some answers seem to just apply to recruiter spam in general.]

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    "What I'm wanting to understand is when and why recruiters send these emails." - because spam is cheap and it sometimes works. Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 16:10

3 Answers 3


It's just recruiter spam. They search profiles for the necessary skill-set they want to target and send out emails.

You've not been accepting all LinkedIn contact requests, have you? If anyone sends me a contact request that says "I'd like to add you to my LinkedIn network", I simply delete it (even if it's someone I know). If people can't be bothered to construct a targeted invitation, I can't be bothered to network with them.

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    Nope, I don't accept LinkedIn contact requests unless I know the person well enough to potentially recommend them - and would be inclined to do so. Which means I have approximately one recruiter on my list. Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 15:41
  • I can see why they might send me one random email. Or accidentally send another when they find me on another search. But acting as if I didn't ignore them on purpose the first two times?! Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 17:11
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    @ArlieStephens are you assuming they are 'hand' composing the mail? As Richard U point out it's probably a script doing this for thousands of names. If they think it might result in one lead from 10,000 emails it's worth it for them. If it clogs up you inbox and wastes your time. Too bad. It has no impact on the recuriter. Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 18:11
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    @CharlesE.Grant Many of them look far too generic to be hand composed, especially the followups. So it's probably a program. Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 19:54

They're trying to fill jobs that they have and by so doing, they get commissions. The more people the reach, the greater likelihood someone will respond and they'll fill the job that much sooner.

That's all. Nothing complicated. Sometimes it's automated, sometimes it's cut & paste.


It's a simple program combined with their resume database.

They run a query that gives them a list of names of candidates who meet "X"% of the profile requirements, then do an email blast.

More sophisticated systems know if you've replied, so that's the reason for the follow up spam. Sometimes there is a human behind the follow-ups doing a cut and paste to anyone who hasn't replied to the previous email.

The good news is that the reason behind it is that the market is tightening up again. Some companies are even paying referral bonuses again, so if you do know anyone who is out of work, those spam mails may be useful.

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