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People Talent
First Call

The Significance of the First Call in Recruiting: Building Trust and Making Candidates Feel Special

When reaching out to a candidate for a potential opportunity, many recruiters simply assess their interest in making a change. If the candidate expresses disinterest, the call often ends there. Conversely, if they show interest, recruiters typically inquire about their experience, project details, compensation expectations, and notice period. This approach is commonly adopted by 95% of recruiters in the industry, leading to frustration when candidates are perceived as lacking commitment to the opportunity.

To address this challenge, recruiters must recognize that they can foster stronger connections by making candidates feel important, valued, and desired. It is crucial to set themselves apart and establish a foundation of trust. Building this trust ensures that candidates will openly communicate any changes in their circumstances, preventing them from abruptly abandoning the interview process.

This trust continues to grow with subsequent conversations, contributing to a reduction in last-minute withdrawals. The initial call is paramount in recruitment—unfortunately, many recruiters fail to grasp this concept, rendering themselves mere telecallers. To distinguish yourself from the crowd and make candidates feel special, you must seize the opportunities presented during the first call.

During the first call, you have the power to:

Make an Impression

Use this opportunity to leave a lasting impression on the candidate.

Cultivate a Sense of Importance

Convey to the candidate that they are vital to the recruitment process.

Align Expectations

Clearly communicate your expectations and ensure the candidate understands them.

Present Your Company

Tailor your description of the company to match the candidate’s preferences. This approach proves beneficial when the candidate receives multiple offers, as you will not appear as if you are selling your company but rather reiterating what was discussed during the first call.

Assess Fit

Determine if the candidate is suitable for the position based on their responses and qualifications.

Emphasize the Position’s Importance

Help the candidate comprehend the critical nature of the role and the organization’s reliance on their commitment.

Earn Trust

Build a foundation of trust with the candidate by showcasing your passion for recruitment, prioritizing their needs, and demonstrating your commitment to their success.

Invest Time

Dedicate a sufficient duration, around 15 to 20 minutes, to engage with the candidate and ensure they feel valued and appreciated. Convey that their talent holds significant value for both you and your organization.

Early Warning Signs

Use the first call as an opportunity to gauge the candidate’s potential likelihood of withdrawing later in the process.

Demonstrate Passion for Recruitment

It is crucial for candidates to witness your enthusiasm for the recruiting process itself rather than solely for your company. This authenticity fosters trust.

Go the Extra Mile

Even if the candidate is not currently interested, invest effort in leaving a positive impact on them if you believe they could be a valuable addition to your organization.


Ultimately, the first call helps you decide whether to invest more time and resources in a candidate. By creating a comfortable environment and demonstrating that you are not just a telecaller but a recruiter who appreciates and values their skills, you can cultivate a positive impression of both yourself and your organization.

In summary, the first call serves as the foundation for successful recruitment. By approaching it strategically, recruiters can build trust, establish rapport, and make candidates feel genuinely valued and enthusiastic about the opportunity at hand.


Amrutesh Iyer