Recruiters: What do they like?

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#1 OliverKuchies  Icon User is offline

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Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 29 November 2015 - 03:04 PM

What do recruiters prefer and why?: Many different contracts demonstrating a skillset or one permanent position? Just curious as im not sure whether it is more beneficial to change to another role after this 6 month contract (ending soon) or to take on an extension for a longer period there. Im looking to enhance my appearance(without makeup) to recruiters and skillset to achieve better roles. What are your thoughts?
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#2 modi123_1  Icon User is online

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 29 November 2015 - 03:08 PM

Quote

What do recruiters prefer and why?

Depends on their company and who they are representing for the head hunting.
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#3 BetaWar  Icon User is offline

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 29 November 2015 - 03:24 PM

In my experience, most recruiters just go for keywords and don't actually pay attention to what you have been working on recently, what you have been paid to do, or what your interests are in. I have had recruiters message me regarding web development positions. Now, I have done web development, I have even done it professionally in the past, but I haven't done it professionally in over 5 years, I don't do jquery (I much prefer vanilla JS), etc. Take that on top of me working for the last 3 years solely in C++ and storage products, and I haven't been paying as much attention to the web buzzwords that are going around, and I can almost guarantee that I am not interested nor am I qualified for whatever web development position they are trying to hire for.

I do, however, have the keywords of HTML/ HTML5, CSS, PHP, MySQL, and Javascript under my skills in LinkedIn, and I have 3 web development "positions" on my previous careers/ jobs section (2 as a freelancer, and 1 as a college student).
Do I know the languages? Yes.
Have I done web development in the past? Yes.
Do I have any interest in being a fulltime web developer? No. And they would see that if they looked at the jobs I have been doing recently.

TL;DR:
Recruiters like keyword searches.
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#4 tlhIn`toq  Icon User is offline

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 29 November 2015 - 04:58 PM

I looked at your profile here on DIC.
You're 18 years old and are claiming 5 years of coding experience.
Not hardly, mate.

So lets start with being frank and honest with recruiters. If you're 18 years old there is only so much actual working experience you have to work with.
I would say better to be honest about your skills than to inflate them, because everyone is going to know what is and isn't true. If you come off looking like an 'inflator', then nobody is going to beleive anything on your CV (resume) and you'll be cut from consideration before the first round of phone calls.

Better to have a small list of skills that you are truthful about, and stress that while you only have 1-2 languages under your belt that you would really call "proficient", you have lots of other positives: No bad habits from years at another company, no 'old school' ways of doing things, eagerness to work long hours, team player attitude, nothing else to spend your free time on but to learn more coding. My last few interviews including the one that landed me my current (great) position all wanted someone that loved coding and were looking for people that did stuff at home even when off the clock. Odd to me, but I see how they want people that keep their skill-set current by making weather-station software for that kit they got at Jaycar Electronics... or people that are self-teaching how to make cross-platform mobile apps, so the company doesn't have to invest time/resources in teaching them... etc.
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#5 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 29 November 2015 - 05:43 PM

Recruiters will contact you based on keyword search. Once you're talking to them, the good ones will figure out what you've got and try to find a good match. They're typically paid based on new hires that stick, so there's an incentive to get you a good position. What they're looking for is, in a nutshell, someone they can place. In a good market, that can be someone at any level, as long as your expectations are in line with your skills and abilities.

Basically, a recruiter is the HR department, outsourced. If they're good, they're looking for exactly the same things the company would be looking for. That would mean, for a young programmer looking for an entry-level position, enough knowledge and experience to get started, and enough humility to take instruction well.
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#6 astonecipher  Icon User is offline

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 29 November 2015 - 09:06 PM

While it is possible to have years before actually being able to work, but you damn well better be able to prove it with code at a level equal to that time frame.

I have dealt with a few recruiters over the years, out of them I felt 2 actually worked to find me something I was looking for. The others threw people at HR to see what they would take, not really caring what you were after.

Be prepared for skills assessments.
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#7 ybadragon  Icon User is offline

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 30 November 2015 - 06:40 AM

I have found that being able to show confidence in your skills is a really good way to get recruiters to put you in a good position. Throwing around keywords helps, but you do need to know how to backup what you are saying. Also being outgoing in the interviews (even through I'm not an outgoing person) has really helped me.
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#8 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 30 November 2015 - 06:42 AM

View Postastonecipher, on 29 November 2015 - 11:06 PM, said:

While it is possible to have years before actually being able to work, but you damn well better be able to prove it with code at a level equal to that time frame.

From my experience, anything that you did for a company is not taken seriously by recruiters or (more importantly) potential job interviewers. It's considered a hobby interest, even if done on a volunteer effort, & not considered "Working Experience".

What is useful, in contrast, is public speaking. So if you go to events that hold talks, having given a presentation of technology 'X' is very welcoming as both experience enough to be recognized to give the talk, for not having a fear of public speaking, & additionally for having the desire & ability to teach others. Once I was even approached by a job recruiter (for a company trying to fill a position, not as an individual) after I gave a presentation at a local Linux Users Group meeting.
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#9 cprop  Icon User is offline

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 30 November 2015 - 02:09 PM

I'll go against the grain here-- I skip recruiters all together. The process I use to land a job is as follows:

  • Create a list of the top 5-10 companies I want to work for
  • Locate the CTO/Team Leads for those companies on LinkedIn and submit a connection request and/or inmail
  • Enthusiastically talk (preferably on the phone or in person) to them about the company and position and express interest in what they are doing and want to know if I'd be a good fit
  • Get invited for an onsite interview
  • Start my new job


Hasn't failed me yet!

PS, another place to get good leads is AngelList, I have used it to get in contact with CEOs of companies I have interest in and it has led to jobs. I would say I have had more success with AngelList than LinkedIn, but the hit rate is high on both.

This post has been edited by cprop: 30 November 2015 - 02:13 PM

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#10 modi123_1  Icon User is online

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 30 November 2015 - 02:18 PM

Seems sketch.
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#11 cprop  Icon User is offline

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 30 November 2015 - 02:24 PM

View Postmodi123_1, on 30 November 2015 - 09:18 PM, said:

Seems sketch.


Not really, I can't claim to have developed the strategy myself.

I co-founded a company in the past and we received a lot of messages and phone calls from interested developers and it's how we hired a lot of very good (passionate) developers. In the end, do you want to hire someone that submitted a sheet of paper or was passionate and enthusiastic enough to reach out?

It totally depends on the company (size, market, product etc), but it works well. Especially for software based companies that are small to medium in size.

Obviously, this strategy would be met with a lot of resistance in a large company like Google/Microsoft etc. Unless of course, you have a lot of credentials and/or connections that can get you setup with a meeting with some of the leads.

This post has been edited by cprop: 30 November 2015 - 02:26 PM

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#12 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 30 November 2015 - 02:28 PM

Frankly, passionate and enthusiastic and reaching-out are not really great indicators of a good hire. I know plenty of people who are all of those things, and are nevertheless absolutely shite at what they do. The only thing I know about someone who follows your process is that they don't respect my time, and are willing to take up my working hours for things that mostly matter to them. This is not a strong selling point in my book.

However, if the CTO is looking for a sycophant, I can see how this would work well.
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#13 cprop  Icon User is offline

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 30 November 2015 - 02:35 PM

View Postjon.kiparsky, on 30 November 2015 - 09:28 PM, said:

Frankly, passionate and enthusiastic and reaching-out are not really great indicators of a good hire. I know plenty of people who are all of those things, and are nevertheless absolutely shite at what they do. The only thing I know about someone who follows your process is that they don't respect my time, and are willing to take up my working hours for things that mostly matter to them. This is not a strong selling point in my book.

However, if the CTO is looking for a sycophant, I can see how this would work well.


Hence step 4, an onsite interview (technical and otherwise).

There's nothing wrong with approaching someone who's job it is to bring in good hires. It's certainly not HR's job, HR is just there to protect the company from bad hires, not necessarily hire good ones.

Recruiters are often tasked with the job of bringing in good hires, but as a company would you rather pay a recruiter a fat commission on a hire or hire someone yourself if they practically walked in the door and expressed interest in a job? It's mutually beneficial.

Obviously, it would still be pending technical interview(s) and onsite interviews, there's no escaping that. It's just skipping the recruiter.

This post has been edited by cprop: 30 November 2015 - 02:36 PM

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#14 modi123_1  Icon User is online

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 30 November 2015 - 02:44 PM

It appears I have a different view of HR and how the hiring process works. Typically if my list of companies does not have a job opening at the moment then they do not have a need/budget/resources for one. Pestering folks in some pseudo-stalkerish mode about a job that doesn't exists - while not bad to keep your name in mind when a job opens up - seems skeezy.

Though that behavior would explain someone who was blanket linkedin connection request/twitter request/facebook request a whole mess of folk in my last job. I was mildly concerned that person would be staking out local watering holes to strike up a faux relationship for a job (thankfully that didn't happen).
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#15 cprop  Icon User is offline

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Re: Recruiters: What do they like?

Posted 30 November 2015 - 02:56 PM

View Postmodi123_1, on 30 November 2015 - 09:44 PM, said:

It appears I have a different view of HR and how the hiring process works. Typically if my list of companies does not have a job opening at the moment then they do not have a need/budget/resources for one. Pestering folks in some pseudo-stalkerish mode about a job that doesn't exists - while not bad to keep your name in mind when a job opens up - seems skeezy.

Though that behavior would explain someone who was blanket linkedin connection request/twitter request/facebook request a whole mess of folk in my last job. I was mildly concerned that person would be staking out local watering holes to strike up a faux relationship for a job (thankfully that didn't happen).


I guess that's the difference-- I've never assumed a company wasn't hiring because there was a lack of job postings. Maybe that's just the valley and the rest of the US operates differently, but I've never found a company that said, "Sorry, not hiring". Any company I have ever spoke to was always wiling to hire the right person. The only question was, are you the right person or not.

I could certainly see where your view probably comes from-- but it seems kind of bureaucratic and red-tapey to me, but there are a lot of jobs like that out there so it's understandable.
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