The IT recruiting field places an emphasis on teamwork, and the technical recruiter who proves to be a good team player will stand out positively from those who contribute less to their coworker’s success. Technical recruiters working within the same office for the same company have a common goal – to place as many qualified technical candidates as possible in IT roles that suit their professional backgrounds. The IT recruiter who sees him or herself as a valuable member of a larger team effort will grasp the big picture goal of a technical recruiting organization. Recruiting is all about making personal connections, fostering business relationships, and keeping in touch with important players in the technical industry. The ability to carry over that focus on people from a job description to interaction with coworkers will make a technical recruiter successful, and most likely, more confident in his or her success than IT recruiters who are more self-reliant than team-oriented.
The definition of teamwork, however, isn’t limited to a specific office location within a company. A technical recruiter working out of company headquarters has as many professional teammates as the company has office locations. AVID Technical Resources may be headquartered out of Boston, MA, but the technical recruiters in the Boston office maintain close ties to those in the Marlborough, MA office, as well as the Providence, RI office. One way for IT recruiters to keep in close contact with teammates in offices that are geographically distant is phone conferencing. AVID’s IT recruiters in the San Diego and Los Angeles offices communicate regularly with technical recruiters in the Boston office. Staying in touch is an essential part of being a team player – regardless of how much space separates team members.
A technical recruiter who stays on top of industry trends will have a competitive edge in the IT recruiting world. How do IT recruiters identify which IT initiatives they should prioritize in a rapidly changing industry, and stay up to date on developments? By nature, a technological breakthrough or trend can eclipse previously dominant technology, making it irrelevant. For this reason, IT recruiters need to be able to educate themselves on new technology, and be among the first technical recruiting firms to offer relevant, replacement technology or risk losing a competitive position in the IT industry. However, the ability to predict which technologies will take off, and which will fade as passing fads can be challenging. New technologies are often predictive of a future consumer need or market, and for that reason may not apply to the current IT industry. Technical recruiters who are best poised to recognize which rising technologies and IT initiatives will wind up being most relevant to the industry as a whole are those who maintain perspective through information. A technical recruiter who stays informed automatically has a competitive advantage over those who don’t, and no IT recruiter can afford to slip into a competitive disadvantage.
Information on and insight into the IT industry can come from a variety sources. Keeping current on best practices in IT recruiting, technical talent management, and IT staffing solutions may take time out of a technical recruiter’s busy day, but it will ultimately make the recruiting process go more smoothly. A good technical recruiter understands that one of the best investments of time or other resources they can make is in themselves. IT recruiters whose confidence in their skills is based on continual self-education and a sharp awareness of current trends and their potential implications for the technical industy are the ones most likely to suceed. Technical recruiters who take time for themselves professionally, and invest time in keeping their candidates informed, will find that the time they put in up front will pay out in a smoother recruiting process with higher placement rates for their technical candidates.
Technical recruiters on top of their game understand that placing technical candidates within any industry isn’t just about matching a skill-set to an IT job description. There’s a lot more to consistently producing winning candidates who clinch IT jobs than pure background & skills. The IT recruiters who understand the issue of fit will be the one who comes out ahead in most cases. Technical recruiters who consults mentors who have been in the staffing industry longer than themselves will find that they can learn from techniques developed by veterans of the industry — a practice known as benchmarking. Top performing IT recruiters Boston who have developed strong benchmarking strategies have a track record of success stemming from their ability to continually replicate the process of making strong information technology candidate recommendations that result in strong hires.
What are the secrets to identifying a high performer? A technical recruiter will have limited access to a candidate — perhaps communicating by phone & email, & sometimes in person, but for limited periods of time. With only a small window of time available to assess a candidate’s strength’s, weaknesses, personality, culture fit & potential red flags, a technical recruiter has to have an arsenal of pointed questions. An ineffective question is wasted time, so IT recruiters need to constantly analyze what each question they pose during screening reveals to them about the technical candidate. If even one question IT headhunters tends to ask an IT candidate doesn’t have a solid answer to this question, the question should be discarded. Time is of the essence, so a question that fails to bring new information to light takes up time both a candidate & IT recruiting companies can’t afford to lose. An efficient interviewing process is one example of a benchmarking strategy, but the best way to learn more is to network directly with IT staffing companies with high placement rates. Contact successful technical recruiters on Linkedin, or at tech networking events & ask them for their thoughts. The quickest route to achievement is to benefit from other’s trial & error, & resulting sucesses.
Technical candidates have a range of company atmospheres that best match their personal comfort levels. Some IT pros prefer finance environments, which tend to be fast-paced & high-stress, while others find working at a nonprofit or educational institution more their preference. Regardless of what point on the scale of competition a company lies on, however, what most companies will have in common is some range of competition – between coworkers, between competitors, or simply as a team effort to achieve company goals. How technical candidates cope with stress will determine whether it drives them forward or holds them back. Technical recruiters, who are familar with coping techniques for stress because the nature of their jobs is high on competition, deadlines & unexpected turns of events, are in an ideal position to advise technical candidates entering a potentially stressful work environment on best managing within the atmosphere.
Technical candidates can make use of a variety of tools as they seek to map map out a path to career advancement. Technical professional development can happen through membership in a technical organization, through networking with other technical professionals, or through mentorship. Technical recruiting companies can provide key tools to technical candidates to facilitate their potential for success. Among the interview prep services an IT staffing firm can provide to boost a talented technical candidate’s chances of interview success is interviewing role play. Especially for technical positions that involve a phone screen & face-to-face interview stage, a technical recruiter willing to guide a technical candidate through a practice run of each type of interview will have a much higher chance of placing a solid candidate than IT recruiter who preps a technical candidate minimally.
When IT recruiters coach technical candidates for interviews, they should be sure to cover several main topics. Environment is key subject for a technical recruiter to go in-depth on, as a candidate who is technically proficient, but not a culture fit won’t pass final interviewing rounds. Another often overlooked, but significant factor to familiarize a technical candidate with is the company’s organizational structure, and more importantly, the hierarchy structure of the specific company group the technical candidate would be working with. Sample interview questions will also help a technical candidate to formulate answers that are concise & consistent – crucial for a good interviewing “story”. Reviewing common questions such as inquiries about long-term goals will help a candidate respond effortlessly when the real deal comes around. Finally, a little positive encouragement never hurt anyone’s interviewing chances! Letting a candidate know they’re a natural fit for the role (if it’s your genuine opinion) & that they’re in a great position to perform to win during the interview will be a plus for a technical candidate & IT recruiters’ chances of a successful placement.
Technical recruiters who want to best understand how to identify top candidates for technical engineering positions should have a good understanding of the role of a technical engineering leader. The ability to recognize leadership traits & categorize leadership ability or potential separately from other good professional qualities will make recruiting for management-level technical engineering roles easier. Directors in technical recruiting understand that there are technical, functional & interpersonal aspects of technical leadership. A technical engineer in a leadership function needs to have a range of skill-sets that a technical professional in non-management levels of the same role may not have, or need — at least until he or she advances into a leadership role!
The important skills – what should IT recruiters know about the skills a technical engineer should have when coaching a technical canditate seeking to enter a leadership role for the first time? A technical engineer expecting to enter a management role should be prepared to collaborate with product management to define a product roadmap, hiring motivated employees, interfacing regularly with senior management, and adressing budgeting concerns. Management in IT is different from non-management technical positions, so technical recruiters and technical candidates who understand what’s involved to make the leap will be best positioned to reap the benefits of the preparation.
Solid strategies for corporate technical talent acquisition is necessary for any successful IT recruiting company. One of the key components of workforce planning is the ability to accurately predict. Technical recruiters who understand the needs of client firms they represent will be able to cater to those client’s needs much better than IT recruiters who simply try to make a match between HR bullet points on a job description & a potential candidate’s resume. The trick for recruiting professionals is to avoid the common trap of feeling constantly stuck in a reactive mode – reacting to a client’s feedback, reacting to a technical candidate unexpectedly backing out of an offer to accept an alternate offer, or any number of other reactive scenarios.
A second key factor in the IT recruiting process is the use of sophisticated technological sourcing tools. Top technical candidates can be a challenge to find, so a comprehensive recruiting strategy can lead to technical candidate contacts from a variety of sources. In the technical recruiting industry, relationships are key. An increasingly global economy can make maintaining some of those relationships difficult, given the obstacles of time differences, office phone systems that may not be set up for international calls, and the potential lag time involved in contacting someone primarily by email.
The challenge IT recruiting companies face when trying to find top technical talent for advance IT roles is to know where to find them. Technical candidates operating at high technology & income levels may not post their resumes in high-traffic job-seeking sites like Monster or Careerbuilder. These technically advanced candidates may have Linkedin profiles, however. Unfortunately, it’s generally calculated that only 50% of the professional population has created an online profile. While it means a lot of technical professionals do have searchable profiles, it also means that 50% of the professional population doesn’t have any presence on Linkedin, and can’t be reached through the career-focused social networking site. As IT recruiters know, even when staff at a technical recruiting firm do identify a promising resume on Linkedin, the trick is to identify whether or not they are seeking new employment.
With Linkedin’s increased popularity, competitor career networking sites have sprung up across the web. Finding these sites through search terms typed into a search engine can generate potential leads for IT staffers. Technical recruiters who join these types of sites and actively peruse profiles & contact eligible candidates may find this method of finding high-quality technical candidates useful. Staying ahead of the competition in IT recruiting means thinking outside the box, and taking advantage of tools other technical recuiters may not be aware of. Thinking in the margin will get IT recruiters ahead, and that’s an opportunity no technical recruiting firm can afford to forfeit.
Technical recruiters know that the highest chances of successful performance in a high-tech role involve technical candidates who are fully engaged in the nuances of a technical role, within & outside of the work day. The career IT contractor who focuses on technical skill-sets during office hours will never reach the level of accomplishment & engagement in his or her role that the technical contractor for whom the industry is a passion will. Strategies for full engagement involve maximizing the venues available to a technical candidate for reinforcing & building on technical knowledge.
One of those venues is the home. Technical candidates who use some of their evenings at home, or free time on weekends to expand their technical literacy levels will be in line for promotion, because they’ll be able to perform at higher levels during the week day than those who don’t. Making use of educational tools is another strategy that can result in significant payoff in terms of skills acquired & potential for an increase in income. Enrolling in courses or tutorials online in high-demand technical skillsets can capitalize on a technical contractor’s marketability. Libraries may also be a good resource, allowing cost control by offering free borrowing services.
Finally, higher education has a strong impact on income. IT recruiters know that a graduate-level degree or coursework on a resume will make getting the contractor placed through a technical staffing firm easier, and the hiring decision process shorter.
What does the profile of a well-rounded technical candidate look like? The kind of candidate technical employers want to interview, and the kind of person IT staffers want to get on the phone. The answer is that what’s timeless in an ever-changing industry is a constellation of skills with strong technical ability central. The skillset required by top technical employers is threefold: cognitive, emotional & social. A highly technically proficient candidate could easily miss out on emotional intelligence due to a preference to sit alone at a desk coding rather than socializing. While this personality trait is a key determinant of a candidate in the technology industry, versus an industry like sales that is social-centric, taken to an extreme, it can limit an intelligent candidate’s ability to be upwardly mobile. The successful technical candidate needs to invest some time and energy into building effective communication skills, have the ability to negotiate compromises, and solve interpersonal challenges. These abilities are what make technical candidates part of a team, rather than just a set of accomplishments and skills.
Technical candidates who possess a well-rounded balance of skills can both complete their job responsiblities and articulate company agendas when necessary. Technical recruiting firms will always make time to interview and place technical candidates at this performance level. These types of candidates can rise to leadership positions, and fulfill the interpersonal aspects of those roles competently. The synthesis of these skills with a good educational grounding in technical abilities, and the drive to stay on top of new developments in the industry, and train to keep pace with them, is what makes an efficient and irreplaceable member of a technical team.