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Recruiter: Job & Career Information

Recruiters are human resources professionals who specialize in matching qualified applicants with the right jobs. Read on for more information about educational and professional requirements, career outlook and salary prospects for recruiters.

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Career Definition for a Recruiter

Recruiters screen and hire job applicants on behalf of employers. After meeting with management to discuss the requirements of a particular job, the recruiter coordinates the search and selection process. He or she may advertise job openings, review resumes, screen candidates, verify work history and arrange interviews between candidates and supervisors. To attract candidates, recruiters frequently attend job fairs, visit college campuses or approach qualified potential employees directly. They often specialize in a field, such as finance, law or technology, as well as a particular type of employee, such as management or administrative personnel. Many recruiters work for employee placement firms or as part of an in-house human resources staff.

Required Education Bachelor's degree in business administration or human resources, or certificate in human resource management
Necessary Skills Communication, networking, sales, teamwork, diplomacy, employment law, technology
Median Salary (2015) $58,350 (for all human resource specialists)
Job Outlook (2014-2024) 5% (for all human resource specialists)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Education Requirements

Recruiting professionals often have a bachelor's degree in business administration or human resources; however, recruiters with degrees in other fields often complete certificate programs in human resource management offered through many colleges and universities. Some companies also offer human resources internships, which may give recent graduates a competitive edge when pursuing recruiting careers. Professional certification, such as the four types offered through the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), may also enhance job prospects (www.hrci.org).

Skills Required

Excellent communication skills, the ability to interact with job candidates and management, build relationships and represent companies at networking events and job fairs are key for recruiters. Strong sales skills, a solid understanding of recruitment strategies and a facility for teamwork are also required. In addition to possessing tact and diplomacy, recruiters must have expert knowledge of employment laws and the ability to organize and keep track of confidential information. They should also have strong computer skills and be proficient in the use of software specific to the human resources industry, such as applicant tracking software (ATS) and Human Resources Management System (HRMS).

Career and Salary Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the number of employed human resources and labor relations specialists is expected to increase 5% between 2014 and 2024, which is a comparatively average rate. Recruiters with a bachelor's degree and experience may find the strongest job prospects. As reported by the BLS, the median annual wage for these professionals was $58,350 as of May 2015.

Alternate Career Options

Some skills necessary to become a recruiter will help prepare you for jobs in other areas.

Compensation and Benefits Managers

Compensation and benefits managers determine benefits and salary amounts for an organization's employees, as well as how they will be compensated. Educational requirements include a bachelor's or master's degree in business administration or management, finance or human resources. According to the BLS, employment opportunities for compensation and benefits managers nationwide are expected to increase by just 6% nationwide, or slower than average between 2014 and 2024. In May 2015, managers employed in the field were paid median yearly salaries of $111,430 in May 2015 (www.bls.gov).

Training and Development Managers

Training and development managers plan and implement career-related development programs according to corporate goals and employee needs. While many prospective managers have bachelor's degrees in business or human resources, a master's degree in a similar field of study or organizational development may be required for other positions. As reported by the BLS, employment prospects for training and development managers across the country are projected to increase by a fast-as-average rate of 7% from 2014 and 2024. Those who were working in the industry in May 2015 earned median annual wages of $102,640 (www.bls.gov).

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