Responding to outdated enquiries from IT Recruitment Agencies

Way back in the mists of time (ok, upto 2001) I worked as an IT Contractor.

This meant I spent short periods (3-6 months) working exclusively for a business in an IT role, usually in Desktop Support or a 2nd Line Support capacity.

Being an IT Contractor meant dealing with IT Recruitment agencies – companies who matched your CV and skillset to vacancies for contract jobs available in the market.

Thanks to web-sites like JobServe – your CV gets passed around agencies, and (hopefully) you get regular telephone calls and e-mails asking you if you are interested in work.

That was in 2001.

Fast Forward to 2007

It’s now 2007 and I’ve been running my own business for over six years. You’d think by that time, anybody still in possession of my CV might realise it’s a tad dated and remove it from their databases.

Judging by the number of e-mails I receive from Recruitment Agents though, that doesn’t seem to be the case. I put this down to the fact I’ve got a couple of fairly rare skills listed on my CV that are still of interest to the Agent desperately trying to match his latest vacancy with a CV in his Database.

Using Outlook signatures

My quick’n’simple solution to dealing with e-mails asking me if I’m interested in a role is to use Microsoft Outlook’s E-Mail Signature feature. The feature is, of course, meant to enable you to quickly append your sig to the end of a message – but it’s just as easy to compose an entire e-mail (“Thanks for your e-mail, but I’m now no longer looking for contract or permanent work. Could you please remove my details from your mailing list?”) as a Signature, name it as say “Recruiters Response” and insert it as a quick-reply to those messages when they arrive in your inbox.


Responding to request a removal of your details should (in theory!) be a better option than simply deleting the e-mail itself and thus potentially continuing to receive messages asking if you are interested in joining that Windows ’95 roll-out in Skegness at £6/hour.


  • Andy2007-05-16 12:50:17

    Completely with you on this! I never even joined an agency. Spoke to a couple, dont think i even sent my CV to them as a full time job turned up yet i still get emails asking for to get it touch!

  • Matt2007-04-18 13:01:04

    You turned down 6 quid an hour?!? In sunny Skegness?? You fool!! ;-)

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