Applying For a Job Through a College Classmate
December 6, 2013 7:14 AM Subscribe
A college classmate who I didn't know well/at all is a recruiter at a company with an open position I'd like to apply for. What's the best way to approach this?
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (12 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
The ol' class letter showed up yesterday, and I learned that a college classmate of mine is now a recruiter at a company I'd be interested in working for. I popped on their website, and they have a position that looks quite attractive. Based on the skills and experience mentioned in the posting, I believe I would be a very good candidate for this position even without the classmate as a connection.
But I know the value of networking, and want to figure out the best way to approach applying for this job. Particularly because after viewing the classmate's LinkedIn profile, it became clear that they may well be the lead recruiter for this position (they are listed as a technical recruiter, it's a technical position, and it's not a big company.) Moreover, this company offers a pretty hefty referral bonus, so I believe the classmate would have incentive to support me over similar, non-referred candidates.
The only thing that gives me pause is that I don't believe I actually know this person as more than a passing acquaintance. Their name didn't ring a bell, and looking at their picture on LinkedIn triggered only the faintest of memories. While this wouldn't be particularly unexpected if we went to a larger college, our class size was only ~350, and in general, it's the kind of place where the "everyone knows everyone" trope exists, even though (clearly) it's not true.
I've got a resume and a formal cover letter ready, and have considered a few options:
1. Send the resume and cover letter to the classmate through LinkedIn with a message acknowledging that we were classmates and expressing interest in the position. Nothing exaggerating the depth of our relationship, simply a few lines along the lines of "Hello Recruiter, Anonymous of AnonymousU Class of Aught Aught here. Got the class letter and noticed you were working for Anonytech..."
2. Send only the LinkedIn message noted above and hold off on resume/cover letter until I get a response (or, if I don't get one, apply through their website X days later.)
3. Apply through the company's website and list the classmate in an appropriate box (if one exists.) Optional: Send the classmate a note after doing this.
Appreciate your thoughts!