Home > Uncategorized > Recruiters – How do you look at out-of-state resumes?

Recruiters – How do you look at out-of-state resumes?

Someone asked this question the other day and I didn’t have a good answer so I wanted to get some feedback from the recruiters out there. The question was; “Do out-of-state resumes automatically go in the trash?”

Recruiters, please add your response as a comment and thanks for your input!

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  1. Ken Horst
    June 23, 2009 at 12:45 pm

    Alright, I’ll get this thing started! In my experience out-of-state hires have generally come from an executive recruiter trying to fill a hard to fill position.

    If an out-of-state applicant was serious about moving to a particular city, you could always get a P.O. box in that city and explain your out of state prefix as being your cell phone.

    Just a thought.

    • kerrierieo
      June 29, 2009 at 9:51 pm

      I have been contemplating the PO Box and think I might just do it. I have a few friends that were not getting any responses with out of state addresses, and as soon as they updated their resume with a local address, even if it was a temporary address (e.g. with a friend or relative), they started getting hits.

      I think it’s much more common to keep out of area telephone area codes now. Many friends have kept their cell phone numbers from 5, 10+ years ago because there’s no point to change it once you get rid of your home phone. It just becomes a hassle and usually you get a recycled number which includes many “wrong number” calls.

      Thanks for posting. I’m off to usps.com!

  2. June 25, 2009 at 7:49 am

    It is a very interesting point. I’m not a recruiter, I’m from other side. So I would like to try to get job in US or Canada while based in other country. And from my point of view most resumes from people like me go in the trash automatically.
    And at this hard time I think that getting job in US is possible only by personal promotion, etc.
    I missed the point with PO box and cell phone. Does it mean I have to have and PO box in the US?

  3. Kara Denfeld
    July 7, 2009 at 2:26 pm

    As Nurse Recruiter, here are my two cents:

    I do review resumes from out-of-state candidates. I look for reasons they are applying to this position (returning to home town, to be closer to family, change in martial status/relationship, etc.); I also look for a date that the transition will take place. If I don’t see obvious answers to these questions a call or email confirming that they truly are interested in my position usually clears it all up.

    ~ Include the date you will be relocating to the city – I realize you’d like to have a job first, but why would an employer consider you if you aren’t certain you are moving there.
    ~ Include dates that you will be in town for interviews – this shows the seriousness of your decision to relocate.
    ~ Include the reason for the move (without giving too much information)

    The PO Box or local address is a good idea, but it does set the recruiter up for disappointment if you still haven’t selected a target relocation date.

  4. July 30, 2009 at 3:49 pm

    I currently am the principal of a search firm, but I’ve also done corporate recruiting (the one on the “inside”). Here’s what my experience says about hiring from out of state.

    The candidate pool in the location where the job is located, will determine the willingness to spend the money to relocate someone. For example, if you’re looking for a software engineer with a specific technical skill set in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, you may need to expand beyond the borders of that metropolitan area. However, if you are looking in Silicon Valley, chances are, you don’t need to extend the search (and the cost) to find out of town talent.

    Also, the level of the position will often determine the willingness of a company to expand their geographical search. Typically a more junior position is less likely to consider out of town candidates. This goes back to candidate pool.

    Now many of you are thinking — but I’m not asking for help with relocating, I just want a job so I can move to that location. I’m sorry to say, that it is often true that your resume may be discarded if it shows you are from out of town. This is where it is important to say up front that you intend to move to this city no matter what…. and say it early. Maybe in your cover letter. There’s no rule that says you have to have a physical address on your resume. Just have your cell and email address.

    Relocation is costly for companies, and that includes flying someone in for an interview. Additionally, it takes time for someone to move (and depending on many factors, some moves take longer than others). Companies will typically look locally first to avoid the complications and the risk of a relocation. The more you can do to alleviate those concerns, the more likely you can make a move to a new city with a job offer already in hand.

  5. August 13, 2009 at 5:15 pm

    Considering out-of-town resumes has typically been based very much on the type of position. How hard is it to find the talent needed locally, vs. having to go farther away to find what I’m looking for. This is a place where the cover letter can have a big impact. It’s great to say the spouse is being transferred so I’m looking to for a new position in your location. Yes, I don’t really want to know about a spouse, but it eases my mind about the geography. The reason that causes more concern is the spouse being accepted to graduate school. When graduate school is over, will you go back to where you came from, so am I happy getting 2-3 years from you?

    The rental mail box (provides a local street address and usually costs more than a US postal box) is a good way to disguise where you are. A challenge can come up if you’re called and requested to come in for an interview soon. That may not be possible. The other aspect is whether the company or candidate will incur those travel expenses (my last company picked up the expense) and how many rounds of interviews are likely to occur.

    Years ago, when I wanted to relocate back to CA, I did get a rental mail box and put the address on my resume, with my local CO phone number. In my cover letters I indicated I was relocating to CA and would be as flexible as possible for interviews. I had no expectation of relocation or the company picking up my interview expenses.

    Bottom line, it sounds like there’s not a clear yes or no answer to this question. It’s case-by-case, as is often the situation in the employment process.

  6. Deborah Shapiro
    August 17, 2009 at 7:30 pm

    I concur completely with Angee Linsey. I will not reiterate what has been already written, however I too want to weigh in by saying that in this job market, I generally will not consider out of state resumes, or even an out of towner who would need to travel a significant distance. The exception would be when I am trying to recruit for high level executives and “hard to fill” positions. If we can have our pick of a variety of extremely talented individuals who live within close proximity, why take on the extra work or aggravation.

    I have done mostly corporate recruiting for the past 20 years. I’d be curious to hear if my own thought process differs much from my fellow counterparts.

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