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Reverse recruiting: what is it and can it benefit you in your job search?

Reverse recruiting: what is it and can it benefit you in your job search?

Artwork by: Antonina Kasyanikova

  • What is reverse recruiting?
  • What can a reverse recruiter can do for you?
  • 4 Steps to reverse engineering your job search
  • What does a reverse job description look like?
  • Background
  • Company description
  • Expectations
  • Priorities
  • How can reverse recruiting benefit me?
  • Key takeaways

Finding the perfect job to apply for before other applicants snatch it up can be challenging. Working with a reverse recruiting professional can help with that issue. In this blog, we will discover what a reverse recruiter is and how one can be beneficial to your job search.

Searching for a new job isn’t always easy. Sometimes it can be challenging to find the right job listing that fits your skills and expertise perfectly. To make things easier, some job seekers choose to rely on the help of a reverse recruiting professional. If you are considering going this route, this blog will cover some of the things you will want to know about this type of job search.

Here are some of the things we will be discussing:

  • What is reverse recruiting?

  • What is reverse engineering in recruitment?

  • What is a reverse job description?

  • How can reverse recruiting benefit me?

What is reverse recruiting?

In essence, reverse recruiting means that you work with a recruiter who searches out jobs that will work best with your goals, skills, and experience levels. If you’re considering transitioning into a new career, reverse recruiting can make your search easier. Instead of you doing the work of fitting your resume and cover letter for a particular job listing you happen to run across, the recruiter finds the listings that fit you.

What can a reverse recruiter can do for you?

  • Run the job search. One of the most time-consuming portions of the job search process is the physical searching for and vetting of potential positions. The reverse recruiting method can take that job off your shoulders since your recruiter will be vetting the jobs for you. 

  • Give career coaching. A recruiting professional can also provide you with valuable coaching sessions that can set you up for a better overall package when you are offered a new position. They can assist with getting you ready for an interview, teach you how to negotiate your salary, and even give you tips on how to best market yourself.

  • Document strategy consultations. Ensuring your resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile is designed to catch the attention of a hiring manager is a critical part of the job search process. With a reverse recruiting professional’s help, you can be certain that your skills and experience are displayed in the best light possible.

4 Steps to reverse engineering your job search

Before you can truly begin searching for a new position, it’s best to know exactly what you are looking for. Breaking down your skills, goals, and work history, which is known as reverse engineering, is the perfect way to determine what type of career path you should be on. 

Here are four steps you and your reverse recruiting professional can take during this process.

  1. Gather information. Collect information about your strengths, past work history, and future goals so you can analyze the data and determine what type of job you will be most successful at.

  2. Create a job description: Write out an imaginary job description that describes your ideal job and the type of company you want to work for. Don’t forget to include your salary expectations and desired benefits in the equation.

  3. Evaluate the job market. Once you know exactly what type of job and company you are looking for, take a look at the real-life companies that fit into that mold and begin looking for ways to open yourself up for potential employment opportunities.

  4. Look for similar positions and openings. A reverse recruiting professional can then take the information you’ve created and use it to identify and promote your application to ideal positions that are already open in similar companies. 

What does a reverse job description look like?

When you are creating a reverse job description, you are outlining what the perfect employer will look like to you. You can set it up much like a traditional job description, but be sure to include the following information.


Before you can determine what the perfect employer looks like, you will need to have a good grasp on where you are at in your career, what your skills are, and what you want in your next role. Include this information at the very beginning of your reverse job description.

Company description

After you know where you want to go in your career, add a brief description of the ideal employer. Include what type of industry they are a part of as well as any other information that would be important to you as their employee.


You should then include your expectations for your next role. Include the type of work you want to complete as well as the ways you want to contribute to a company’s success. Add any type of benefits or pay requirements you have into this section as well.


Finally, determine a list of priorities to include in your reverse job description. Some of the things to consider adding should be what you want the company’s culture to look like, your expectations for work-life balance, and even what a desirable interview process looks like.

How can reverse recruiting benefit me?

Reverse recruiting can benefit a job seeker in several ways. Utilizing this job search strategy in your job search can help you:

  • Know the exact position you are searching for can help make the job search process easier and faster.

  • Easily identify which jobs wouldn’t suit your skills and experience based on your reverse job description.

  • Be in a better position to negotiate your salary when you receive a job offer because you will be more informed about the market as a whole.

  • Find potential positions faster so you can get your application in front of hiring managers before other applicants, which can give you an edge over the competition.

Key takeaways

  1. With reverse recruiting, job seekers will imagine the perfect job that fits their skills and expectations so they can streamline the job search process.

  2. Reverse engineering the type of position that would be desirable can help you find potential opportunities for employment within desirable companies.

  3. Creating a reverse job description can help you determine the types of jobs you should be searching for based on your current goals, experience, and work environment expectations.

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