Yes, I know, I am not in a recruiting role right now. However, it’s not hard to get pulled back in when duty calls. I’ve had people contact me and ask for me to review their resumes. I have had staffing firms contact me to ask for recruiting referrals. I read articles on the industry and the trends that are recruiting. I was a part of the recruiting industry for over 5 years. Like a pro-football player, you may move on from being on the gridiron, but you’re still associated with the game. Maybe you become a sports commentator or coach.
IT staffing and recruiting is difficult, and it’s going to get tougher. I have stated this for the last year, and I’ll continue to say it until the ice age comes and electronics are ultimately fried by some radiation from the sun, or 25% of college grads have technology degrees. I can’t even be sure that 25% is enough. What’s a (IT) recruiter to do nowadays? How do you tell your client, “Mrs/Mr Manager, I’m doing what I can”? Often times a corporate recruiter will have requests coming out of their ears. Recruiters and Sourcers cost money, and accepting what some industry-focused think tank, puts out as a ‘best practice’ will come up short when it comes to deliverables. Who is this ‘best practice’ referencing?
Some fundamental things need to be put into place, and sometimes it can take an act of God to make it happen. It’s not that the recruiter can’t execute, it’s that hiring managers, staff and everyone else that could help, don’t. Lets put it out there and if it can happen, great.
What is the plan? Lay it out to the manager. Here are the steps we’re going to take…together:
- Places to post – calculated and targeted. Don’t post tech roles on Monster. Do it on Github or Stackoverflow, where tech folks are currently go on the web.
- Networks to leverage including personal and professional networks.
- Upcoming job fairs at campuses that have programs catering to your area – CompSci, MIS, etc
- Feedback from hiring manager and keeping them moving. If they don’t get back to you in a timely fashion, things will fall apart
- Spread the word, spread the word.
Great place to work
If your hiring manager is not ‘cool’ and the place you work at is not appealing you’re going to have your work cut out for you. This will be a huge challenge. Start out small. Get the manager, and team members, on board with why they show up for work. What are the great challenges and differences this person can make on the team?
I mentioned networking above as part of the sourcing plan. This is where many recruiters fall short. They do. Even the ones that go every week to local tech users groups. Why? Because they attend those meetings with clear intentions – recruit. Turn it off. You don’t have to be the car sales person all the time. Take a genuine interest in the technology. You’re there because of that. Be sincere about it too. People can see through someone that is trying to fake the funk. Your ultimate goal is to have people know you as just a normal person that happens to work as a recruiter. If they think you’re smarmy and have ulterior motives, you’ll be less effective. Remember the part above where I keep getting pulled back in by people sending me their resumes? Hello? McFly.
I saw a person who had a company change on their LinkedIn profile. I know the person. Used to work with them. I immediately messaged them through the site and asked if they moved on to another role. The news, he got let go a few days ago. Bummer, yes, but I immediately started offering advice. I think he appreciated it. If you don’t tune into these opportunities, they’ll sail right by you.
Lending your expertise
You have 30+ requisitions. You have managers all over your tail. Your boss is getting heat from your client group. I get it. You have not time to breathe, but, you have to gain trust of candidates and not all of them will be cut out for the roles you’re trying to fill. Help them out. Give them feedback. Provide advice to them. You. Are. The. Expert. They will appreciate it. There’s a quote out there somewhere. It goes something like, “a person should be not be judged for the people that can help them, but on the people that can’t.”
It’s a comprehensive approach and one that must be met on all points. Yes, all points. Fall short in one area and it will crumble. All it takes is for a manager to not get back to you in a timely manner and candidates will go elsewhere. This is not your marketplace, it’s the IT job seeker’s. Understand that.