Despite making Kandidate’s mission to ‘replace recruitment agencies’ clear in the first line of my LinkedIn profile – until recently, not a week went by without unsolicited agency emails landing in my inbox. I can only imagine how much worse it is for others!
Our team at Kandidate wanted to find a way to put recruiter email spam to an end – for good. With the help and contribution of other startups and candidates on our platform, as well as Alex Bird’s list on Github – we’ve put together.
What can we do with this, you ask? Well – with this list you can now stop unsolicited recruiter emails from clogging up your inbox, through one of the below methods. Note: we’ve tailored our step-by-step guide for Gmail users, but these methods also work on other email clients.
1. Prevent Recruiter Email Spam from Landing in Your Inbox
There are two ways to automatically prevent recruitment agencies from our list of 500+ from ever contacting you.
Option 1. Google Admin Accounts: Create a Blacklist
This option is particularly suitable if you are a company and want to automatically send any incoming recruiter emails to spam.
With access to the google administrator’s account for your organisation, you can pre-empt these emails and create a recruiter blacklist that will block all the addresses added to the list. Google has provided great step by step instructions; we’ve also created a version of the List of Recruiters that is ready to directly copy and paste into your new list.
Option 2. Non-Admin Account Users: Pre-screen and delete incoming messages via a filter.
If you are not operating the admin of your company’s email service provider, you can still use our list to pre-preemptively block recruiter email spam. In this case, return to the ‘create new filter’ page as discussed in points 1.4 and 1.5 above. Enter the email addresses from List of Recruiters into the “Has the Words” field, and select ‘create filter with this search’.
Finally check the box that reads ‘Delete it’. All messages from those domains will now be automatically deleted – if you want to receive messages from any of the domains in the future, simply edit the filter from the ‘Manage Labels’ >> ‘Filters and Blocked Addresses’ tab, and remove that domain from the criteria.
2. Make Recruiter Email Spam Skip the Inbox
If you want to keep all recruiter data in one place in case you need it one day, without filling up your inbox – this is your best option.
By creating a filter in Gmail that ‘skips the inbox’, if any of the 500+ recruitment agencies on our list tries contacting you, their email will not land in your inbox, and instead be automatically re-directed to an email label.
Here’s how to ‘Skip the Inbox’:
1. In your vertical menu, scroll down until you see the ‘Create new label’ option, like this:
2. Select the option and type in a label for the emails you will be filtering. For example, we’ve gone with “Recruiters to Contact.”
3. Now it is time to add the email addresses that will be filtered into the new label. Scroll down and select the ‘Manage Labels’ option in your vertical menu. Select the ‘Filters and Blocked Addresses’ tab from the horizontal menu bar at the top. Scroll to the bottom of your filters and choose ‘create new filter’ from the bottom center menu.
4. Select the ‘Filters and Blocked Addresses’ tab from the horizontal menu bar at the top. Scroll to the bottom of your filters and choose ‘create new filter’ from the bottom centre menu.
5. Add the email addresses you wish to filter into the “From” field. Then select ‘create filter with this search’.
6. To finalise your selection, check the “Skip the Inbox” box, choose the label you created in the drop-down arrow (next to ‘Apply the label’), and check the box to apply the filter to any existing conversations. Finally, click ‘Create Filter’.
3. Automatically Reply to Recruiter Emails
Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to type the same message, over and over, in response to the same questions asked by recruiters?
As a company, whether you need to direct recruiters to your hiring policy (like AppearHere does) or best point of contact, or whether you want to simply and politely ask them to leave you alone, canned responses are incredibly useful. They are your opportunity to both send off and request qualifying information, to point them in the right direction regarding your policies or inform them that until further notice you will not be actively hiring. You can customise them as you see fit – but fortunately you only have to do so once.
As individual candidates I’m certain we are familiar with the vague recruitment messages that find their way into our inboxes – more often than not there is no mention of the job specifications, the salary… or even the company name! This apparent lack of sincerity and personal intent tends to leave a sour taste in a candidate’s mouth. By using canned responses that outline a request for further information regarding those specifications, we can combat illegitimate recruiters and hopefully make contact with those who are willing to give candidates the information they need. Why waste your time writing multiple replies when you tend to require the same information?
You can send canned responses to all of the recruiter domains in the List of Recruiters automatically, by setting up filters.
Enter the list of recruiters into the ‘Has the Words’ field in a new filter, as discussed above, and check the “send canned response” box. Then decide which custom response to use – all the recruiters in our list will be sent your chosen response.
Not sure how to set-up canned responses? Find the instructions below.
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How to use Canned Responses:
1. Select the gear icon in the upper right-hand corner of Gmail, and choose ‘Settings’, like this:
2. Click the ‘Labs’ tab, and search for ‘Canned Responses’. Select the ‘Enable’ button to enable Canned Responses, then finally scroll down and click ‘Save Changes’.
3. Compose a new email, and write the text you’d like to send repeatedly. In the lower right-hand corner of the message window, choose Canned Responses – follow on by selecting ‘New Canned Response’. Name your canned response and click ‘OK’.
4. Now, whenever you want to respond with a canned message, simply choose ‘Canned Responses’ from the arrow button on the lower right hand side of the message, and select the relevant response under ‘Insert’ to include in your email.
4. Really Fed Up with Recruiter Email Spam? Here’s the Ultimatum:
What to do when it all gets too much? While the Kandidate team isn’t sure we can fully promote the idea of recruiter revenge, after hours in a lifetime wasted over unnecessary recruiter email spam we definitely understand it’s appeal.
If all else fails, you can always take a leaf out of the team at 42Floors, who developed an innovative way of dealing with recruiters – and they called it the Recruiter Black Hole. Imagine an almost endless looping phone call with someone who doesn’t really exist. Now laugh fiendishly… we may even join you.
Together, We’ll Defeat Recruiter Email Spam
Whenever you receive a spammy recruiter email – forward it to [email protected] and we’ll add the domains to the list!
Looking to discover non-tech startup job opportunities, or hire startup talent without recruitment agencies? Join leading startups like Uber, GoCardless and more at www.kandidate.com