Monthly Archives: August 2010

Informational Interviews and Shadowing

In the IT staffing Industry, there are many techniques aimed at helping a candidate land an IT job.  As a prospective  candidate, you should utilize all of these “tricks of the trade.”  One “trick” our IT recruiters recommend is trying to schedule an informational meeting with a potential IT hiring manager.  Most managers and executives like to talk about how they got to where they are.  It gives them a chance to look back on their IT career and see what got them there. Another great way to learn more about that IT job you hope to have one day is shadowing an executive or manager for a couple of hours or a couple days.  You would of course first have to make sure they feel comfortable with this.  They can tell you, the job seeker, what technical skills you need to know and the different tasks they handle throughout the day. So when you can’t find too many IT job opportunities, try getting to know IT managers and executives.  Not only will you likely learn something about the IT industry, you’ll make an important contact as well.

Add IT Key Words to your Resume

IT recruiters go through resume after resume to find keywords that will match the IT job description.  Therefore, it’s important for prospective IT candidates to include as many key words in their resumes as possible.

For example, if you’re a Software Engineer, be sure to add all of the development languages and tools that you have experience with (obviously without fabricating).  By doing so, your resume will be more likely to be found by IT recruiters.

If an IT staffing firm receives a new IT job order for a VB.NET Developer who has experience developing code that will sit a SQL Server database.  Subsequently, their IT recruiters are likely going to search “VB.NET and developer and SQL Server.”  If you didn’t list the different programming languages, as well as various databases, your resume would not come up in the IT recruiter’s search.

IT Contractor Rates in a Weak Economy

Since the economy has weakened, there have been many efforts to give aid to all the high-tech candidates who were laid off from IT jobs.  Numerous IT professionals have either been living off of aid provided by the government or have resorted to lower wage IT jobs.

In addition to smaller budgets, due to the abundance of candidates on the IT job market, a supply versus demand affect was created thus lowering IT contract and full-time pay rates and salaries.

The average high-tech professional is making $5-10/hr less than he or she was making a couple of years ago.  On a full-time scale, this equates to $10,000 – $20,000.  Obviously a significant decrease for anyone.

For those IT professionals who work with IT staffing firms, the rates are down as well.  The reason is due to the fact that the client ultimately dictates the bill rates to the IT recruiting firms (based on that number, the IT recruiting company then calculates the pay rate to the IT job seeker).

The good news is the fact that companies are still utilizing IT staffing agencies to fill these needs (although the client pays a premium, they save money in the long run as they’re not responsible for paying overhead costs such as health insurance and unemployment).  Therefore, IT professionals have a solid resource to utilize when looking for their next IT job.

However, ever better news will come with an improved economy because as the market increases so do IT contractor pay rates and full-time salaries.


In the IT Recruitment Industry, there are stipulations when it comes to teaming up with a well known IT staffing company.  Depending on the type of position, and situation, most clients expect IT staffing firms to maintain some level of confidentiality when it comes to filling one of their IT jobs. There are a number of reasons for this, there might be someone currently in the role that is being replaced (due to performance, attitude, etc) or the client might simply not want people to know they are actively hiring.

On the other side of the hiring process are the candidates.  Many IT recruiting companies keep the name of their end client confidential to prospective candidates.  The reason IT staffing firms do this is to eliminate the risk of a candidate just submitting him or herself directly immediately after they get off the phone with the IT recruiter.  Although most people who never do this (ultimately it would likely just hurt their chance of landing the opportunity), IT staffing companies protect themselves just in case.

Not many job seekers go straight to IT staffing agencies and a good portion of them may not even know these companies are even out there.  Therefore, the IT staffing industry as a whole needs to collectively educate job seekers to reinforce the facet that IT recruiting agencies are seen as a viable means to land their next IT job.

How to keep your IT job search on track

Looking for an IT job is a daunting task.  You are constantly worried about finding an IT job description that you fit and making sure you have the qualifications.  It isn’t easy and there are many distractions.

Here are a few tips from our IT recruiters about find a job in the Information Technology Industry:

1. Keep track of the IT jobs


When searching through different websites you will end up applying to the same IT job if they appear in different search engines.  Therefore, be sure to keep track to each that you apply to.

2. Don’t Double Submit

If you’re working with various IT staffing agencies, communicate what IT jobs you have applied to so they don’t double submit your resume.  This looks bad for everyone.

3. Organize your IT job searching time

Throughout your entire search, IT recruiters suggest allotting a certain amount of time to each task.  You should divide it up in searching for IT jobs, applying to the IT jobs, and preparing documents for applications and submissions.  If you do not divvy up your free time, then you might spend too much time on one task.

4. Follow up

Keep a spreadsheet of all the IT jobs that you applied to, then mark the date.  Follow up with the contact person once a week with a call or an email.  If you’re utilizing an IT recruitment firm, then follow up with your respective IT recruiter.  Hint, if you don’t have a contact person’s name, try to find a profile on Linkedin.

We hope these tips help you find that ideal IT job.  If you need more help in your IT job search, call an IT staffing agency such as AVID Technical Resources.  They’ll put you in touch with a qualified IT recruiter to assist with your search and set you on the right path.

You interviewed for that IT job, now what do you do?

Getting that IT job interview is the first step of many.  You need to keep your name fresh with the interviewer(s) to make sure they remember you.  Sometimes there is a big gap of time between getting the interview and getting the job.  Here are a few things our IT recruiters recommend going through the interview process.

1. Business Cards

Before you leave that in-person interview, ask for the hiring managers business card.  Remembering the names of the people who interviewed you, as well as their proper spelling and contact information, is important.

2. Thank You Card

As we mentioned in previous blog posts, IT recruiters believe that a thank you card is one step you should not miss.  It gives you a chance to answer some of the technical questions you were not able to answer during the meeting as well as reinforces your interest in the role.  By going just a bit above and beyond, you can leapfrog other equally qualified candidates who did not do this.  Thank the interviewers for their time.

3. Social Media Networks

Do not go and update your status on Facebook or twitter about how well you interviewed with Company X or write anything that could hurt your chances of landing that IT job. Clients working with IT staffing agencies are known to check up on your social media networks.

Follow these steps and it will help you get that next IT job!

Experiences from our IT recruiter Intern

This summer we hired 3 interns to help us out with recruiting information technology candidates.  We went through the interview process and identified the right candidates for our IT recruiting internship program.  They seemed to be a good fit with our company culture and appeared to have the drive/motivation.  Looking back, we were right.  Each has proved to us they have the skills and qualities to be a successful recruiter in the IT staffing industry.

Now that the summer is coming to an end, our interns chose to tell us about their experience working as an IT recruiter for one of the fastest growing IT staffing companies in the country.

He summarized his experience like this:

1. People Skills

Having people skills is a factor that helps talking to prospective candidates about the different IT job opportunities you have available.  An IT recruiter needs to know how to connect with a candidate on a personal level to make them feel comfortable and willing to listen to what you have to say.

2. Cold Calling

An IT recruiter will receive many applications to job postings, but in the end, you will need to go digging through a resume database for some candidates that fit the IT job description

3. Phone manners

IT recruiters need to work on their phone manners, especially when you are constantly working with prospective candidates.  Acting in a professional manner will always help keep the candidate interested and comfortable.

4. Hard Work

In order to succeed you need to put in the time and effort.  Nothing is free in life and you need to work hard to get the results you want.  Finding the right candidate is not as easy as picking a name out of a hat.  An IT recruiter has to search through databases and applications to find candidates who will fit the IT job description, as well as the culture in the company.

Overall, our IT recruiter interns felt that they learned valuable lessons from working in the IT staffing Industry.

Is the IT industry going Green?

Lately there have been many blogs and articles about the Information Technology industry going green.  More companies are looking to create products that are environmentally friendly while remaining efficient.  Combining the two things is hard but businesses are beginning to research and look into the possible solutions.

IT recruiting companies are using less paper and relying more on technology.  Hiring manager’s typically read resumes instead of printing out piles of paper.  Technology is driving the green revolution, IT contractors are also beginning to learn more about these solutions and new IT job opportunities are opening up.  This trend of going green is slowly catching on, but seems to be growing at a quicker pace, as environmental changes appear to be effecting us more.

Should you start looking into getting certified to work on green efforts?  It might be a good idea to give yourself that extra line on your resume.  Hiring managers are always looking for something that will differentiate you from the next candidate.  Even if they aren’t working on green solutions they might in the future.  It will then give you an advantage over other candidates!

Getting Millennials and Generation X to work together

Some argue that the Internet was the single most important invention of the 20th century.  Businesses have computers for every employee (IT recruiting firms often provide both a desktop and a laptop for their IT recruiters).  It is the backbone that drives today’s businesses and economy.

Millennials grew up using computers.  Because of this, most of the generation has strong typing skills and extensive computer knowledge.  Therefore, anyone born prior is obviously at a disadvantage.

The emergence of social media has compounded this generational gap.  IT recruiting companies are now posting all of their IT jobs on Twitter and Facebook pages.  However, to most Generation X’s, this is still foreign to them…ultimately pushing the generational gap farther apart from a technology perspective.

Therefore, our advice for Generation X is to embrace technology.  Take some classes or try to find someone who can teach you computer basics.  Break free from your comfort zone and create accounts onTwitter and Facebook.  You don’t need to be an expert immediately – simply start using these sights at your own pace.  IT recruiting companies are depending upon these sites more and more.  If you’re not using them, the right IT jobs may pass you by.

And for Millennials, have some patience.  At some point, each of us may be facing the same apprehensions or fears.  Time flies and you never know what new technology is lurking around the corner!