What Does a Recruiter Do: Duties, Skills and Salary

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 10 November 2022 | Published 13 September 2021

Updated 10 November 2022

Published 13 September 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

If you want to work in human resources, you may think about becoming a recruiter. In this role, you may have the opportunity to assist others in finding and securing their ideal career. Similarly, it's your responsibility to assist employers in assembling a team of competent employees. In this article, we discuss what a recruiter does, how to become one and answer some of the most commonly asked questions regarding the role.

Related: What Is Recruitment? (With 7 Stages of Recruiting)

What does a recruiter do?

A recruiter is someone who discovers people to fill available vacancies. In this capacity, a recruiter may discover qualified individuals for each job vacancy. As a recruiter, you're essentially in charge of the majority of the recruiting process. It's your goal to assist individuals in finding jobs they enjoy and companies in finding excellent workers.

It's essential for recruiters to be pleasant and amicable because recruiters frequently interact with applicants and assist them with their applications. Throughout the job hunt, you can be someone both applicants and employers can rely on. It's critical that you possess a thorough understanding of your field so that you can reach out to the right prospects. Outlined below are some common duties outlining what a recruiter does:

  • Meeting with prospective employers to learn about their staffing requirements

  • Attending job fairs to meet prospects and attract talent

  • Looking for suitable applicants on job networking websites or online employment portals

  • Posting vacant jobs on job boards, social media sites and company websites

  • Interviewing applicants to learn about their professional aspirations

  • Conducting phone interviews and background checks to screen candidates

  • Interviewing candidates who pass the screening procedure

  • Learning more about the abilities, credentials and professional background of applicants

  • Negotiating employment offers with top candidates

  • Finalising and making employment offers

  • Calling references to learn more about candidates' past work experience

  • Processing employment papers and beginning the onboarding process with new recruits

Related: How To Work With a Headhunter To Find a Job (With Tips)

How to become a recruiter

Outlined below are the steps you may consider taking to become a recruiter:

1. Obtain a bachelor's degree

The majority of recruiters have a bachelor's degree in a relevant subject, such as business administration, human resources or psychology. You may consider enrolling in classes that allow you to study individuals and their habits. Psychology, sociology and communications are excellent disciplines to study for prospective recruiters. Although some employers may not need a higher degree, having one can help you stand out from the rest and negotiate a higher earning potential.

Related: What Are Recruitment Strategies? (Plus 10 You Can Use)

2. Gather relevant experience

Get used to engaging with others during the course of your job. Gain expertise in this subject during your undergraduate studies by participating in relevant student groups and obtaining human resources internships. Job shadowing a professional recruiter is a wonderful method to learn about the field and build relationships in the industry. During your work shadowing day, you may ask your mentor all the queries you have regarding this profession.

Related: What Does a Recruitment Consultant Do? (Definition and Skills)

3. Discover what discipline of recruiting you enjoy

There are various types of recruiter paths you may pursue. As such, it's essential to understand the characteristics of each and discover which one speaks most to you. Narrowing down the recruiting niche you want to do can also assist you in specialising in a specific skill set. Employers might prefer applicants with more specialised experience. Outlined below are the several types:

  • Headhunter: You work for a hiring firm that places people in a range of roles. It's your responsibility to identify competent applicants for these various positions.

  • Executive recruiter: You specialise in locating executives for high-level positions. To identify highly qualified leaders, it's essential that you've got the necessary skills.

  • Internal recruiter: Instead of working for a recruitment firm that outsources hiring, you would work for a company that does it in-house. As such, you may expect to source candidates within your own workplace.

  • Information technology (IT) recruiter: You especially seek applicants for IT positions. You look for employees who have technological talents such as coding, data analytics and software development.

  • Legal recruiter: Your duty is to identify applicants for various legal positions such as lawyers, attorneys and paralegals. You can also specialise in a particular field, such as family law or corporate law.

  • Management recruiter: Your primary goal is to identify candidates to fill managerial positions. It's essential that you understand how to identify natural leaders.

  • Military recruiter: It's your responsibility to persuade people to join the military. You inform potential recruits about career prospects in your specialised branch of the military.

  • Pharmaceutical recruiter: You specialise in hiring individuals for pharmaceutical positions such as sales representatives, pharmacists and technicians.

  • Sales recruiter: You fill sales positions across a wide variety of industries. Job openings you may fill can vary from entry-level to executive-level positions.

  • Sports recruiter: It's your responsibility to discover and sign athletes for your sports organisation or team. You often find employment with schools or professional sports clubs.

Related: What Is Headhunting? (And How It Differs From Recruiting)

4. Expand your network

To fill roles constantly, it's essential that you cultivate a wide social network. You may then ask your contacts for recommendations or contact individuals directly. Your contacts may know someone who would be a good fit for your employment vacancies. Social networking websites are one method to expand your network. Interacting with your followers' posts regularly and offering intriguing career-related information is a wonderful approach to connecting with others. Recruiters can also attend networking events or career fairs to meet new people.

Related: Why is Networking Important?

5. Pursue further studies and education

You can continue to study about this job even after you graduate. Attending professional development workshops and seminars is an excellent method to remain up to date on the most recent recruiting practices. You might even get a relevant credential to help you advance in your recruitment career.

Read more: How To Build Education Section In Your Resume

Frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding a recruiter role

Outlined below are some of the most commonly asked questions about the role of a recruiter:

How much does a recruiter earn?

The national average salary for a recruiter is $53,894 per year. Be mindful that this figure is highly dependent on your level of education, field expertise and professional experience. It may also vary greatly depending on your employer's type and size. Moreover, your final take-home pay may also depend on whether your employer gives commissions or bonuses for successful talent selection and recruitment. Generally speaking, common benefits that come with this position may include paid time off, work flexibility, health insurance, commuter assistance and subsidised gym memberships.

What skills does a recruiter need?

Outlined below are some of the most common skills you may consider developing to succeed as a recruiter:

  • Attention to detail: It's essential that you're detail-oriented as you manage a wide range of tasks and frequently try to fill numerous positions at the same time. Keeping precise plans and notes might aid in the management of several activities at the same time.

  • Analytical skills: As a recruiter, you've got to be analytical to study prospects for the demands of the organisation you're hiring for. You may also utilise these abilities while analysing resumes, evaluating applicant potential and negotiating job offers.

  • Industry knowledge: Equipped with good knowledge of the industry, you may be able to better match and bridge employers' requirements and aspiring candidates' aspirations.

  • Sales knowledge: It's important for you to possess good customer service skills to analyse the requirements of both candidates and employers, answer inquiries and solve problems as they occur. Customer service abilities are also essential to develop relationships with clients and applicants.

  • Written and verbal communication skills: As you spend a significant portion of your days phoning, writing and speaking with colleagues and clients, it's essential that you're able to talk and write properly to communicate their messages accurately.

  • Computer and clerical skills: It's vital that you've got basic computer abilities to manage data, write notes, send emails and prepare presentations. Many recruiters are proficient in conventional human resource software platforms, as well as word processing, spreadsheet, presentation and email applications.


  • 10 Essential Recruiter Skills (With Steps to Improve Them)

  • Top Transferable Skills To Include in Your CV

What is the work environment of a recruiter?

An office setting is the most common type of work environment for recruiters. As a recruiter, you can expect to spend the majority of your work time on the internet or on the phone to do your research and connect with applicants and employers. You may also be required to travel to meet with applicants, attend job fairs and tour university campuses. During regular business hours, most recruiters work full-time.

Related: Recruitment Process: Definition, Methods and Steps

What are some related job titles?

The following job titles are related to a recruiter:

  • Labour relations specialist

  • Compensation manager

  • Training and development manager

  • Human resources generalists

  • Benefits coordinator

  • Career advisor

  • Human resources manager

Related: How to Respond to a Recruiter Email (With Templates)

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at the time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.

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