For the technical professional, the job-hunting process involves careful planning. Making the next technical career step within the system requires understanding fully what current roles a technical professional can expect to move into within a few years of time building the skills that are the focus of his or her current role. Aside from planning out his or her individual career trajectory, the technical professional will want to be aware of the state of the IT job market, and the level of demand that exists both for his or her current technical skillset, but also for the types of technical skills that can be gained by obtaining a technical certification, additional schooling, or by seeking a new IT job position.
The interviewing experience is a key part of the career preparation process. Feeling at ease during an interview may not come naturally to a highly skilled technical professional who may not have a lot of interpersonal interaction over the course of a typical work day. A technical candidate may be adept at managing the stress that comes with tight deadlines and highly precise assignments, but not be as familiar with the anxieties that can arise during interviewing when facing a stranger for the first time, especially highly accomplished members of a company’s upper management elite. Technical candidates who work with IT staffing firms have a valuable resource in the technical recruiter that is easy to capitalize on. Asking a technical staffer for advice on resume crafting, cover-letter writing, and interviewing tips or engaging in mock interviews with him or her can be the difference between getting invited in for an interview and getting invited back for an offer. Ultimately, that’s the bottom line – for IT headhunters and technical candidates alike!
Managers working in technology need to have well-developed leadership skills to compliment their technical qualifications. Technical recruiters understand that technical employers that partner with IT staffing firms seek technical candidates that are both tech-savvy and display strong interpersonal skills. Technical managers need to be skilled in technical training, which has it’s own language. Being familar with this language and conveying it articulately to new technical hires is a key focal point of a technical managers responsibilites. IT recruiters and IT staffing agencies speak to technical candidates over the phone to guage leadership ability, and technical employers hiring candidates for a technical management position will definitely ask interview questions aimed at determing a technical candidate’s level of proficiency in that area.
Landing a top-paying technical job involves not just qualifications, but also the ability to recognize the highly subjective nature of the hiring process. A technical candidate who uses these variables to his or her advantage has the highest chance of walking away with a job offer. Complimenting an interviewer on a wardrobe choice at the start of the conversation won’t compensate for an incomplete technical skillset, but if a candidate’s qualifications are solid, and the candidate can convey strong confidence in his or her area of technical expertise, starting the interview conversation on a positive note can only help make a positive impression and break any tension in the air from the start. Keeping these subtelties of the interviewing process in mind will help skilled technical professionals move into management with ease.
Entry-level technical professionals starting an IT career in a job market where those skills are in high demand want to set themselves up for long-run success. As IT staffing agencies know, technical consultants in today’s corporate environment need interpersonal skills to compliment technical expertise — being technically proficient along in the current information technology industry is not enough. Communcation skills play a key role in a technical consultant’s success in many roles, but is not a skill emphasized in engineering school. For that reason, technical recruiting agencies need to be able to accurately judge communcation skills in interviews, because technical recruiters will be sure to if they invite a candidate in for an interview.
As IT headhunters knows, success in business cannot be reduced to a simple formula. Excelling as a technical contractor involves a mix of interviewing finesse that IT staffers can help prep a technical candidate for, and the technical skill level required for the role. Technical recruiters can partially assess the skill component by a careful review of a technical candidate’s resume and credentials, but soft skills that can’t be captured fully by a resume (such as creativity), but nonetheless play a significant role in a technical employer’s hiring decision are abilities that the interview is designed to showcase. IT staffing firms can provide interview advice to technical candidates, but ultimately, making the best impression and displaying proficiency during an interview is a responsiblity only the candidate can assume. Being sure of communications, interpersonal skills, and creativity in problem-solving is a technical candidate’s best best at insuring that his or her technical skills are complimented for the full picture. Presenting the full picture is the secret to getting an offer, so technical candidates should focus on these skills throughout their careers, not just on the area of expertise that determined that their career path would be focused on the information technology industry.
Technical Professionals who have become experts in their chosen areas of technical talent may find their career trajectory leading them into a management role, and realizing, once in that role, that their job experience so far hasn’t prepared them for the pressures and challenges of IT management. Project management, a standard step in the promotion ladder in IT, is not only an advancement, it’s a major career shift with a new set of responsibilities and skills required. IT professionals who have become accustomed to a self-directed schedule now need to learn how to manage people, and integrate interactions with others into their daily schedule. Time management, while probably a skill many technical professionals are proficient in, becomes central.
IT recruiters placing seasoned technical consultants in a first project management role are in a position to prep technical talent for the IT job ahead. Technical professionals located on a wide range of the spectrum can qualify for a project management role after a certain number of years working as a successful technical contractor. IT staffing agencies will then see a technical candidate as a desirable placement for a project management role coming from a variety of technical jobs: information technology professionals, engineers, and even medical professionals. Working with IT staffing agencies to make the transition into the new job is a challenge IT headhunters can make easier for technical consultants through solid, targeted advice.
Technical recruiters who have been involved in the information technology and staffing industry for a while will be able to attest to the transformations that have taken place in the technical job landscape, and the huge increases in employer demand for IT roles. IT recruiting companies that understand the evolution of best practices in the IT recruiting world, and employ best practice strategies, have emerged as cutting-edge forces in the current workforce environment. Technical hiring managers who recognize IT talent management as the core business function that it is in today’s high-activity technical job market will serve as a valuable resource to other IT staffers for that reason.
Technical recruiters who stay on the edge of recruitment technology trends are in the best position to take advantage of them before they become common knowledge, and perform on a more competitive level than other technical staffers. Ultimately, the technical recruiters who work for IT staffing agencies are one of the best tools employers have at their disposal when developing talent and a solid workforce. IT staffing firms who develop a global perspective on the IT staffing industry, and hiring managers in the information technology industry will stay current and relevant.
IT staffers starting out or looking to polish an already-established technical recruiting career will want to pick up a copy of Recruiting and Retaining Employees for Dummies. Even seasoned IT headhunters working at IT staffing firms with plentiful resources will love Manning’s book – not because it’s actually for dummies, as the playful title references – but because it’s written as the author intended, to be straightforward, free from unnecessary detail, and an easy read for professionals without a lot of free time. Part one of the book includes the term ‘recruiting wars’ in the title – referring to the high levels of competition that exist between IT staffing firms. Becoming competititive in the information technology industy involves mastering steps: first, a solid grasp on the basics, followed by strong lead-generation skills. Finally, the active IT staffer will want to develop his or her recruiting plan based on the goals of short placement periods and low cost.
The book opens with an in-depth look at benefits. Presenting company benefits verbally to technical candidates, negotiating with companies to get technical consultants the kinds of benefits they expect for every level of experience an IT staffer manages, and maximizing the benefits you are able to land for candidates are key skills that will advance a technical recruiter’s placement rates and career trajectory. As an IT staffing firm offering excellent benefits, AVID Technical Resources understands the importance of providing benefits packages that make for happy employees, as well as insuring that candidates our IT headhunters place offer good benefits through either the placement company, our firm as staffers, or a combination of both. Grab a copy of this book today to quickly increase your IT recruiting success quotient.
College students or recent grads considering a career in technical recruiting will want to pick up a copy of The Inside Scoop: Recruiters Share Their Tips on Job Search Success with College Students. A lucrative career in the IT staffing industry can be a great career option for motivated young professionals. As Cunningham points out, an internship at an IT recruiting firm can be a great way to learn more about the industry. Since a big part of IT recruiting is understanding the qualifications for the job, and giving IT contractors advice that may give them a better chance for an open IT job than other IT consultants competing for the job, this book can be very helpful for the novice IT recruiter looking to learn the basics of the job.
As any IT recruiter working in the information technology industry knows, a lot of the work IT staffing firms engage in happens behind the scenes. Chapters covering the best techniques for writing resumes and cover letters can serve IT hiring managers well, so that they are both familiar with these skills themselves but also able to coach IT contractors on those fronts. Interview questions common to various technical positions and dressing to make a good impression are key topics for any IT recruiter to make sure his or her candidate is well-versed in before an interview. As any successful interviewer knows, the key to turning the interview opportunity into an offer is the ability to close well. A strong thank you note, negotiating skills, and conveying positive qualities through non-verbal cues all play a key role in the successful interviewer’s arsenal. Technical consultants and IT recruiters will find this book to be a practical guide to success in the information technology industry.
Recruiters On Recruiting: Tell Me About Yourself: Conversations About Life, Love And Work gives IT staffers and those working outside of the technical recruiting industry a look at the work of IT staffing. Based on interviews with top-performing Silicon Valley technical recruiters, the book reveals tips for optimizing the income potential of the career, and quotes recommendations coming directly from IT headhunters. Technical candidates currently on a hunt for an IT job will also find valuable advice on conducting a successful search, crafting a solid technical resume, and interviewing skills that close the deal.
Technical candidates reading this book who may be familiar with the with IT staffing industry purely from working with technical recruiters in the past, and maybe getting placed into contract or contract-to-perm IT job positions may be surprised to learn about how wide the range is for the variety of job types a technical recruiter will handle. Not only do technical staffing firms place temporary contract positions, they offer direct hire opportunities, executive search options and vendor on premise arrangements.
A technical candidate who turns to a technical staffing firm like AVID Technical Resources for executive search purposes will want to take a look at Top Secret Executive Resumes: Create the Perfect Resume for the Best Top-Level Positions. In this book, Provenzano culls from over 20 years of experience as a certified resume writer to delve into the elements that go into a high-level technical executive’s resume. Technical Recruiters are well-versed in the art of editing technical resumes in order to highlight past technical experience and skills in a way that markets and develops their skill-set for the highest visibility level for a technical employer’s critical eye.
Provenzano inserts over 150 pages of genuinue executive-level resumes in the book for prime examples of what technical candidates want to use as a model when crafting a technical resume. IT staffing firms looking to keep a competitive edge will find the insights useful for technical candidates, and IT staffers focused on providing solid resume-editing advice. The book also offers before and after examples to display the kind of transformation a technical resume can undergo to bring simply stating technical skill-sets to selling technical employers on their specific value to their company and open position.
A valuable resource for technical recruiters, “Demystifying Technical Training: Partnership, Strategy, and Execution” has the stated purpose of demystifying technical training. Maximizing the potential of technical candidates involves playing up their strenths, and helping them to bolster their weaknesses, making them more marketable in the high-tech world. According to Combs, a key component of a solid technical training strategy involves an accurate assessment of a candidate’s technical strengths and weaknesses. It is only with this information that an IT staffer will be best equipped to tailor a technical training strategy to best capitalize on a technical candidate’s talents.
One formula Combs identifies that IT headhunters and other professionals working at technical staffing firms will find invaluable is her identification of predictable patterns in technical training availability within companies. For this reason, technical candidates in a position of employment seeking to make a move can take advantage of these training cycles in order to best position themselves to make an advantageous move into their next role. IT staffing firms who can encourage this type of strategy will be best placed to capitalize on it.