The expectation when you are an IT or technical recruiter is not to be able to program. It’s not required that you know how to code, build out systems architecture, or even manage a team as a scrum master. As an IT recruiter, your job is to be able to talk the talk while attracting some of the best technical minds to your company to solve your client’s challenges on the cyber battlefield.
However, some IT recruiters are disillusioned by how good they are at BS-ing. And it shows to candidates, who will most likely ignore you and move on from the interview.
Here are some IT recruiting blunders, and things you should avoid.
THE RECRUITER who SENDS UNQUALIFIED CANDIDATES
Time and time again, technical teams and hiring managers are frustrated with the IT recruiter that sends any candidate with java in their resume for a pre-interview review. One Chief Architect notes his experience in hiring at a notable mobile data company:
“Why do you persist in sending us people who couldn’t make their way out of CS101 and have exactly zero knowledge of algorithms or data structures? I insisted on screening everyone because they had difficulty saying no in the past, and I ask really simple questions. The [people]… you send me can’t even…convert between Java Collections and arrays with any comfort, never mind handle some of the more esoteric problems in the CS world such as the imposing “FizzBuzz problem”.”
Understanding the technical requirements for the position you are filling is an absolute must over everything else. It requires research, but it will make you much more knowledgeable at your job, and a better face of the company to candidates.
THE IT RECRUITER who’S CONFUSED ABOUT WHO THEY’RE INTERVIEWING
I’ve heard candidates make more complaints about an IT recruiter’s knowledge base, especially when it comes to actual skills sets. Asking about HTML coding experience to someone who builds systems architecture is never a good look.
Programming languages are used in software development. Examples of these include Python, Java, C, or Perl. System languages, in comparison, are designed for performance and ease of access to the underlying hardware. Examples include SPL and ESPOL, both of which are similar to ALGOL in syntax. Ruby on Rails? AKA Rails is a server-side web application framework.
Generally, just know your stuff before a conversation.
THE IT RECRUITER who HAS NO IDEA WHAT DECADE THEY’RE IN
My favorite world’s dumbest recruiter comes from my own experience, both from the DoD and the private sector. In the DoD, it was always about COBOL. Somehow, they would bring it into the conversation – it is one of the oldest object-oriented programming languages still in use but has no practical application for any exciting gig a candidate would go for today. Also, there’s no reason you would ask about it in an interview…
Along the same lines, I worked for a tech start up that had a mobile development team – it was for an iOS app that was programmed in Swift language. The novice IT recruiters would ask if candidates had 5 or 10 years of experience in Swift programming! Yikes! That’d be hard for a language that has only been around for 6-7 years.
THE CLEARED RECRUITING CHRONICLES: YOUR WEEKLY DoD RECRUITING TIPS TO OUT COMPETE THE NEXT NATIONAL SECURITY STAFFER.