Monthly Archives: March 2010

Do’s & Dont’s of Resume Writing

I’m sure you’ve been given many suggestions from numerous IT recruiting agencies on what (and what not) to put on this essential piece of paper. The truth is, you’re crafting a document for the most important product you’ll ever sell – yourself! Take it from an IT recruiting company who has seen it all: the good, the bad, and the ugly.

  1. DO be simple, clear and basic in both content and style.  DON’T over format with several varying fonts, styles, colors, and tables.  While it’s important for your resume to look sharp, conveying the information is most crucial. Sometimes the showmanship can detract from the message. Unfortunately there’s no font special enough to make up for lack of skill – a hiring manager will cut through the styling in no time. It’s better to leave it out completely because believe it or not, a clean plain resume will resonate more effectively.
  2. DO be as concise as possible.  DON’T allow a congested, wordy resume sell you short.  IT Resumes can be lengthy by nature. Listing information technology skill sets combined with the popularity of contract work in this field forces resumes to be extensive. With that said, be succinct. Describe the project or responsibilities in a way that is detailed, but brief. Avoid rambling paragraphs and stick to bullets that are straight to the point.

    3. DO edit for spelling, grammar, verb tense and accuracy. DON’T allow a sloppy resume to cloud your talents. Though IT jobs are less likely to be nitpicky about grammar than say – publishing jobs, basic writing skills are important. Your task is to come across as intelligent and professional. Errors in fundamental skills like spelling can be mistaken for carelessness, disorganization, or laziness. In order to put your best foot forward, you must express high-tech expertise along with everyday proficiencies.

    4. DO focus and tailor your resume to meet the job criteria. DON’T use one generic resume for varying positions. It’s clear to IT recruiting agencies how much you want the job before you even step foot into their office. Do your homework. Your resume should illustrate why your specific knowledge is beneficial to the position you have applied for. A vague description of your talents does not distinguish you from the competition.

    5. DO be 100% honest.  DON’T lie, fib or exaggerate.  This might be the number one “DO” that should come as obvious, but often times does not. IT staffing firms do their research and will discover any inconsistencies in the information you provide. Lying about experience, skill sets, dates, etc. will ruin your chances of being submitted for a job. Don’t do it. Period.

Some IT staffing agencies like AVID Technical Resources will actually re-format your resume to put these suggestions into action. Save IT recruiters some time and stick to these commandments, we assure you it will make the difference in the long run.

Social Media: Essential Tool in the IT Job Search

Given the current economic climate, it is important for job seekers to utilize all available resources in their search. The advent of social media has changed the name of the game, making information easily accessible through various mediums like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.  IT Recruiters use these networking sites to get the word out about available IT jobs.

IT staffing agencies like AVID Technical Resources rely on these resources to alert potential candidates about new opportunities. As soon as a job is posted to our site, it automatically gets linked to social media. Because IT recruiting firms see countless scores of resumes, it is important to remain aware of every new possibility. Constantly checking for updates can make the difference in getting your resume in the right hands.

IT recruiting companies attack each search thoroughly and swiftly. IT recruiters often submit candidates within hours of acquiring fresh IT jobs. Client companies rely on IT staffing firms to get the job done right and fast. If you apply for a job posted a month ago, chances are it’s been filled. Remaining proactive is essential. The quicker you submit your resume, the likelier it is you’ll beat out the competition. Depending on the scope of the project, IT recruiters might be working on a position that is extremely time sensitive.

Engaging in various forms of social media might just be the quickest way to alert yourself about new opportunities. It’s as easy as checking a Facebook or Twitter status on your cell phone and could make the difference in your career. IT recruiting agencies understand the importance of these tools and use networking sites to cast their net far and wide.

Let’s face it – our culture has evolved. Information travels faster than you can imagine, much attributed to the popularity of these different mediums. One thing that remains true, however, is that the early bird does in fact get the worm.   Contact an IT recruiter at AVID Technical Resources to jump start your Information Technology career.

Networking – The Key to Any IT Job Search

Ask any IT recruiter, the most important element to any job search is simply networking.   Whether you utilize IT recruiting agencies or the multitude of free sites available on the internet (such as LinkedIn), networking is by far the best means to finding IT jobs.

Utilize IT recruiters first:
Contacting IT staffing agencies should always be your first call.  IT recruiters have a vast network of clients, therefore, with one call you can tap into dozens and dozens of local IT jobs.  The more IT recruiting companies you reach out to, obviously equates to better and better odds.

Talk to as many IT recruiters as possible across numerous IT staffing agencies.  Meet with the IT recruiting firms, then find a handful of IT recruiters that you connect with and/or trust.  Build a relationship with those IT recruiters, and most importantly, stay in touch with them.  If you do this, you’ll have numerous IT recruiting firms working for you as you tackle your next networking initiative:  social media.

Social Media:
The advent of social media has transformed the IT recruiting industry.  It’s now easier than ever to network and foster relationships that will help you get a foot in the door.  Utilize LinkedIn.  This is one of the most powerful networking sites that IT recruiting companies utilize.  Connect with friends, former co-workers or even people who work internal within that dream company you’ve had your eye on for years.  Tap into these IT resources, then see who they know.  This is networking 101.

Networking Groups:
It might sound obvious, but networking groups are an excellent means to build relationships.  However, they’re probably one of the most under-utilized sources.  The point of the networking group is quite simple.  People are there to network.  Therefore, everyone has a purpose and each person should go out of their way to help one another out.  Reciprocity is imperative.  Some of the better networking groups actually provide “homework” for the participants.  If you’re tasked with finding the contact information for a specific IT manager for the person next to you, then you’re expected to show up at the next event with a name and number.  The same holds true in return.  Outside of utilizing IT staffing agencies, networking groups can drastically improve your chances of landing that next IT job.

Word of Mouth:
Good old fashioned networking starts by simply talking to people.  Remember how to do this?!  In a world of computers, email and text messaging, one of the best ways to network is simply just talking to people.  Get to know people in your every day life.  If you’re active, talk to people in your teams or different groups.  Talk to the person next to you in line, on the train, at a game or even in the elevator.  You never know.  The main point is simple:  get the word out there.

After reading this blog, then you know where you need to start.  Contact one of our IT recruiters at AVID Technical Resources and jump start your career.

10 Job Search Suggestions From An IT Recruiter

Searching for a new job can be an anxious period of time, especially when you currently don’t have a job.  During the search process, you’ll experience a number of emotions – all of them very natural as the process can leave you feeling vulnerable.   There are a number of things that you can do to improve your chances of landing that perfect IT job, such as preparing a strong resume and utilizing IT recruiting companies.  However, in my 12+ years as a seasoned IT recruiting industry veteran, my biggest piece of advice is simple:  Grab the bull by the horns!

More specifically, approach the job search as aggressively as possible.  Be relentless and determined;  give the search process everything you have.

Having said this, I understand that this is very vague advice.  Furthermore, being aggressive and determined won’t get you anywhere if you don’t know where to channel that energy.  Therefore, I’ve created a list of action items.  Take it from an IT recruiter who has placed over a thousand high-tech professionals, if you follow this list of 10 job search suggestions with the steadfast determination described above, you’ll ultimately find that next IT job opportunity.

1)  Create The Perfect Resume: First, see my blog posting, How to Write the Perfect Resume.  Put together a masterpiece as it could make the difference with whether you land that ever-important job interview.  Remember that IT recruiters or hiring managers may be looking at dozens, sometimes hundreds of resumes.  If your CV doesn’t read well or isn’t put together properly, it may cost you that opportunity of a lifetime.  Furthermore, include as many technologies (that you confidentally know well) as possible to ensure your resume comes up in an IT recruiters search.

Hint:  Avoid Cover Letters (see blog posting:  Cover Letters – Not Worth Your Time).

2)  Post Your Resume: IT recruiters live on job boards.  Therefore, if you want to be found, obviously make sure your listed.  Don’t just rely upon Monster.  Utilize all of the IT job boards on the market – regardless of how known or unknown.

3)  Refresh it Your Resume: Simply put, unfortunately some IT recruiters can be lazy (except for the IT recruiters at AVID of course).  Therefore, they may not search back months, upwards of a year, for all resumes on the IT job boards.  Keep your information at the top of the list by refreshing your resume at least once a week (refreshing it daily is overkill).

4) Contact as many IT Recruiting Companies as possible: Because different IT recruiting agencies work with different clients, it’s important that you send your resumes to as many IT staffing companies as possible.  Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.  For more advice, visit:  10 Great Tips for Working with an AVID Technical Resources IT Recruiter

5)  Meet with as many IT Recruiters as possible: It’s critical to build relationships with IT recruiters.  The average IT recruiter will speak with over 100 prospective candidates in a week.  They will likely meet around 5 to 10.  Therefore, to ensure you’re on the top of the IT recruiters list, to make sure they think of you first when they receive that IT job, you have to first build a strong relationship so they will remember you.  As good as some IT recruiters are, it’s virtually impossible to remember every prospective candidate that they have spoken with.  See my previous blog entry:  Why Meet with an AVID IT Recruiter?

6)  Follow up!!: Just submitting a resume is not enough.  Take my advice and follow up.  Ask whether the IT recruiter has received your resume and whether you can set up a time to talk further about your experience (or even better, meet in person).  If you go out of your way to follow up with every resume submittal, you will uncover an opportunity that you may likely not have received otherwise.

7)  Utilize Indeed: is an excellent resource for prospective candidates.  Set up search agents that match your skills, background or even that ideal next IT job.   Create daily email alerts so you literally receive current jobs in your inbox.  Work with an IT recruiter at AVID and send him or her some of the postings to see if they have contacts or relationships that will help you get an interview.

8) Utilize Linkedin: Linkedin is one of the most helpful sites on the internet when it comes to searching for a new job.  It allows you to uncover important contact names in an IT staffing company or IT recruiting agency or even within the direct client themselves.  This allows you a chance to contact the IT recruiter or hiring manager directly.  Linkedin also gives you the ability to create your own network, thus ultimately get referred to a new position through someone you know.

9) Remember to remain Aggressive: After you complete steps 1-7, don’t stop.  If you haven’t seen any positive results yet, don’t give up.  Continue to network with IT recruiters, continue to follow up with IT recruiting companies, continue to remain aggressive.

10)  Network, Network, Network: I mentioned it above, but it’s worth repeating.  Networking is one of the most critical components to finding new opportunities.  Utilize networking websites (such as Linkedin or social media sites such as Facebook or Twitter), join networking groups and quite simply just spread the word that you’re looking for a new IT job opportunity.  The more people that know you, the better your odds of hearing about your next career stop.

So go out and grab the bull by the horns and remain aggressive in your job search!  An IT recruiter at AVID Techncial Resources will be waiting for your call:  617-951-1880.

Art of Interviewing with IT Recruiting Companies or Direct Clients

Over the years, I’ve interviewed hundreds of candidates.  From internal IT recruiters working for various IT recruiting companies, to prospective IT consultants, I’ve been fortunate to meet some great people.  Learning the art of the interviewing process has certainly helped me sharpen my craft as an interviewer – and has ultimately allowed me to create a master blue print which should help every candidate land that next IT job.

Here’s where you start:

1)  IT job interview preparation: First, do your research on the IT recruiting companies you meet with or the direct clients themselves.  Come prepared with questions about the company and do your homework to find as much industry information as you can.  Whether you meet with IT recruiters or a hiring managers, utilize Linkedin to find some information on his or her background.  Try to find a commonality or just inquire about the person’s background.  Don’t leave the commute to chance, test drive the day before if necessary.  Come prepared with questions, and most important, come prepared with something to write on!

2)  Arrive Early – but not too early: Give yourself plenty of commuting time to ensure you’re not late to your meetings with IT recruiting companies or tardy for your job interviews.  You can’t control traffic patterns, train or bus delays, so focus on what you can control:  how early you leave your house or apartment.  If you find yourself at the IT job interview location too early, go grab a coffee, walk around the block or just stay in your car and continue to work on your interview preparation.  Plan on entering the office around 10 minutes prior to your interview.  Do not enter the office more than 15 minutes early – that could actually hurt your chances of landing the IT job.

3)  Get to know the receptionist: Most IT recruiting companies have a front receptionist.  Same with direct clients.  You’re not looking to make a new best friend, however be sure to make some small talk and/or be as polite as possible as you never know what influence he or she might have (not to mention it’s just common decency).

4)  Stay on your feet: If you’re brought into a conference room to wait for the interviewer(s), then remain standing until they arrive.  This shows you’re eager and respectful.  If you must sit or you’re left waiting for a long period, be sure to stand once the IT job interviewer(s) arrive.

5)  Proper Greeting: First, if you’re seated when the interviewer(s) arrive, be sure to stand up when you shake his or her hand.  Do not shake someone’s hand while you’re seated.  This is a sign of laziness and/or disrespect.

6)  Hand Shake: Hand shakes should be firm, but not bone crunching.  A firm hand shake is a sign of confidence – employers would obviously prefer to hire a confident candidate over a non-confident person.  Look the interviewer in the eyes during the hand shake – but avoid the death stare!

7)  Remain standing: At least until the interviewer(s) ask you to sit or they are seated themselves.  IT recruiting companies will often have you meet with multiple people so be sure you’re consistent with each of these tips.

8)  Be sure to listen: Do not interrupt, when thoughts or rebuttals come to mind, simply write them down until you find the right time to bring them up.

9)  Ask questions: Show some interest in the IT recruiting company or direct client.  Be inquisitive about the interviewer(s) past (for example, how long they have been employed with the company?).  Have questions prepared about the specific role you’re interviewing for (such as, why is it open?  Is this a new position or a replacement?  If it’s a replacement, what happened to the previous employee?).

10)  Close the Interviewer(s): At the end of the interview, always ask whether there is anything additional information you can provide.  If not, ask if they think you’re qualified for the job, then always get a follow up (specifically, “is there a day in which I can follow up with you if I don’t hear from anyone?”).

IT recruiting companies are trained to pick up on these subtle signs.  This could make the difference from an IT recruiter contacting you about a specific job.  Follow these steps and always put your best foot forward.  Good things will ultimately happen when you do.

The Value of IT Recruiters

In today’s fast-paced and ever evolving business climate, you need an agency that fits your needs perfectly.  You shouldn’t take chances with IT recruiters who cannot deliver efficient and effective solutions.

The value of a well established IT recruiting firm can be the difference between success and failure of your upcoming IT project.  Choose a firm with IT recruiters who know the IT staffing industry, have experience making sound placements, and one that can provide your company with qualified candidates who will meet your technical needs and fit your company culture. Choose AVID Technical Resources.

AVID Technical Resources Is . . .

  • A full service IT recruiting company that couples hospitality with quality service by getting to know you on a personal level.   A company that does not just match IT skill-sets, we match people.
  • A well established IT recruiting firm that knows how to sell your company to our top IT candidates.  We will represent your company in the same fashion that we would represent our own.  You must rely on a firm that has the experience, resources, and know-how to offer unique IT staffing solutions, and that defines us well.
  • One of the leading IT recruiting companies in the industry and recognized as one of the fastest growing IT staffing firms in the country.

Your Role Matters Too!

Talent is not a commodity, it is a rarity that can give your company the leading edge it needs, and we understand that.  If you want to optimize your talent acquisition strategies, you need to begin by developing a unique relationship with us.  A lack of communication only leads to our inability to sell your company to their clients.

By establishing a partner relationship with us, you can keep the bar on screening your candidates raised high.  Communicate with us and share your goals.  We need to understand your business norms and trends, so don’t limit the communication.  The more we understand, the more we can help you find a qualified candidate in half the time that it would take you if you chose to direct hire.

IT Staff is Integral

From the dawn of technology until now, the economy has fluctuated to great degrees.  But whether it is a prosperous or slow economy, you should never quit reevaluating your staff and working with IT recruiters in order to improve and better meet your IT goals.

Even in the slowest economy, a well-developed IT department is a necessity.  After all, just because the economy is slow, it does not guarantee that you have the best IT developers.  And you need the best.  You need an individual who will compliment the uniqueness and dedication of your team of professionals.

Hiring additional IT resources can be viewed as a burden or a time consuming expense.  It does not have to be.  When it comes down to it, recruiting the top IT staff is an obligation that you owe your company.  Your IT department will only put out what you put into it.

Take the time to develop a relationship with IT recruiters that you can trust, and one that you will, in the future, come to rely on.  Avoid the static communication, and go directly for one on one, more personal communication.  Whether over the phone, or through a conference call, investing a small amount of time into a trusted and reliable IT staffing firm will pay off in the long run.   Contact AVID Technical Resources and speak with one of our knowledgeable IT recruiters: