What might a job recruiter/headhunter be looking for in a cold call?
April 20, 2015 4:44 AM   Subscribe

I'm in company A. Someone from company B in a very similar area to me has emailed to me to talk about something routine, and also to catch up on what I am doing these days. I do not know this person in company B, but they seem interested in my work. Assuming that they might be sounding me out, and also that I have a tendency to over think things, what might a recruiter be looking for in a cold call such as this? Thanks!

Company A has both pros and cons. I could however see myself at company B in the right circumstances, although the shift might take a lot of work. I would like (if this is a recruitment thing) to keep things open for a while.
posted by life moves pretty fast to Work & Money (6 answers total)
Best answer: They are calling you because they want to hire you, but are fishing for reasons not to hire you.

That, or they are updating your information so that they can sell you to more companies in the future.
posted by oceanjesse at 4:56 AM on April 20, 2015

Best answer: I'm not clear that person from company B is a recruiter. If not then they are networking in the hopes that your company has a job for them.
posted by dawkins_7 at 5:28 AM on April 20, 2015

This is also a typical (if somewhat unethical and quasi-legal) tactic in competitive intelligence.
posted by digitalprimate at 5:40 AM on April 20, 2015 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Hmm - dawkins_7 - I'm assuming that as they are senior to me (think manager versus team member) that they are not interested in coming to Company A. I've started reading some of their technical publications.
posted by life moves pretty fast at 5:42 AM on April 20, 2015

Best answer: Agree with dawkins_7 that they might not be a recruiter. Either that or they've never poached before because someone experienced in recruiting would just start by asking if youre interested in moving.

There's nothing wrong with directly asking what they would like to discuss in this meeting. Call them and if its not what you want to spend your time on, you don't have to go.

If you're interested in working for company B and that's what they want to talk about, make sure you're prepared to ask _them_ questions. They already know who you are & what you do. If they're recruiting, they're just looking to confirm you're not a weirdo. Dress nice.
posted by stellathon at 5:44 AM on April 20, 2015

Response by poster: Great answers, thanks very much everyone!
posted by life moves pretty fast at 3:51 AM on April 21, 2015

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