Tag Archives: IT recruiting companies

How to Deal With Negative Interview Feedback

One of the advantages of working with IT recruiters is that they can sometimes pass along feedback from interviewers who don’t hire you.  Even though it can sting a little to hear you didn’t land some IT jobs, the feedback can be golden.  Here’s what to do with it.

1. Stop and really listen.  If your IT staffing companies can provide feedback on why you didn’t land the job, take every word in.  Ask questions if you don’t understand.  The point is to get as much information as possible, because this is a window into a hiring manager’s view of you.

2. Don’t take it personally.  While this feedback is helpful and should be taken seriously, it doesn’t mean you’re an inadequate candidate.  IT recruiting firms work on thousands of jobs every day.  These jobs require different skills, different kinds of personality, a different work style, etc.  If you aren’t what the hiring manager wants, that’s ok.  You want to be hired for a job where you have what the hiring manager wants because you want to be hired for a job you will succeed in. Think about children’s puzzles where you fit shapes into the corresponding holes.  You would never shove a square peg into a round hole.  It would break the peg or puzzle over time.  You want to work with your IT staffing agencies until you find the kind of job that you’re a great fit for.  Find the square hole for your square peg.

3. Don’t argue if you disagree with the feedback.  Even if you think the hiring manager is patently wrong, you shouldn’t argue with your technical recruiters.  There are a three reasons for this.

a. Firstly, you won’t be able to change a hiring manager’s mind.  Most hiring managers rely on their gut, and you simply can’t argue with this.  Even if the hiring manager is wrong, they will always think of you as having this deficiency.

b. The second reason you shouldn’t argue with the feedback is that it can provide a chance to better yourself.  Do you need to brush up on that technology?  Are your communication skills with higher level executives rusty?  Even if you didn’t initially think so, take this opportunity to do so now.  This is a chance to make yourself even more marketable to the next interviewer!

c. The third reason not to argue with feedback from a job interview is that you’ll want to continue to get this feedback!  You want IT recruiting companies to feel the feedback they give is appreciated and taken seriously.  When you argue with it, most IT recruiters will decide they never want to give you feedback again.  Why deny yourself this valuable tool in improving your candidacy?!

Want to see our open IT jobs?  Follow us on LinkedIn.  We post new jobs daily!


job interview tips
Don’t argue with interview feedback. Listen to it! Photo credit: Hans via Pixabay.


Tips for Second Job Interviews

When you’re working with IT staffing firms to find a new role, sometimes you’ll have to do a second in-person interview.  Since second job interviews aren’t as common, candidates often feel unsure about how to approach them.  Here are some tips from IT recruiting companies on handling second in-person job interviews.

How to dress: Dress in a suit or other business professional attire. Even though dress codes in many companies are becoming more relaxed, the suit is still king for interviews.  Sometimes, candidates will go to a first in-person interview and find that everyone is wearing jeans.  Don’t let this throw you off.  Technical recruiters find that candidates make a better impression when they dress professionally at all stages of the interview.  You want to show respect to the company and their hiring process.  Following the dress code is part of that.  If you get the job, you can dress down when you start the job.  

How to prepare: Do two things in particular this time.  Firstly, research the company a bit more deeply.  Secondly, prepare new questions.  Your second interview will likely differ from the first.  First interviews are often more about establishing your technical skills and experience.  You might do white-boarding or coding tests. The second in-person interview is much more about how well you fit into the team and/or company.  Start your preparation by doing a deeper dive into researching the company, product, and corporate culture.  Your IT recruiting firms might have some thoughts on web sites to visit, as you do this.  They may also be able to tell you who your interviewers will be.  If so, it’s a good idea to do a little research on your interviewers, too.  The more you know about the company, its products or services, and your interviewers, the more you can show an interest in them.  In the tech field, a deep passion for the work, the company, and the products or services will go far!

The second thing you should do in your preparations for your interview is to come up with new questions.  You can use some of your research about the company to come up with these questions.  You can also just come up with other questions about the role, management styles, etc.  It will be important for you to have different questions than you asked in your first interview.  For more ideas about interview questions to ask, check out this blog post. 

How to answer questions:  Focus on bringing something new to the table and really let your personality shine in this interview.  Even if you’re asked the same questions again, there are many ways you can tweak your answers to be different.  Be patient if you’re asked a question twice or asked something similar.  You may be meeting with a mix of new and old people who will unwittingly repeat each other.  You want to answer questions so people who have already interviewed you hear something new that strengthens your candidacy.  You also want to try to be understanding of this if they repeat questions or discussions.  If you are impatient about it, you won’t land the job.  Nobody wants to work with somebody who is rude or difficult.  IT staffing agencies advise you to remember that your personality and your ability to fit into the culture of the team and company are what hiring managers are focusing on in this second interview.  Make sure you present your best self here.

Want to see our open IT jobs?  Follow us on LinkedIn.  We post new jobs daily!


IT job interviews
Your second job interview is all about culture fit. Photo credit: miranijenish via Pixabay.



3 Tips for Better Interviewing

There’s a lot of bad advice about how to interview candidates.  This has gotten even worse in the tech sector since Google’s unorthodox interview questions were leaked.   People have been rampantly speculating on (and misinterpreting) how the coveted employers in the IT field conduct interviews.  If you’re hiring for your open IT jobs, check out these 3 tips from IT recruiting companies on how to interview without scaring away your candidates.

Don’t use gimmicky formats or tests. Don’t make your candidates do trendy personality tests.  Don’t force them to answer every question in a very short time frame.  Don’t put them through any cut-throat group interviews/competitions.  The point of your interview is to get a sense of what kind of employee the candidate is.  When you make them uncomfortable with unexpected activities, you’re not going to get this information.  All you’re going to do is make the candidate uncomfortable….and maybe inspire them to tell their IT recruiters and everyone who visits Glassdoor all about the bizarre ordeal you put them through.

Don’t be a jerk. There are a lot of trendy techniques out there that center around purposely being rude to a candidate to see how they operate under stress.  Some say you should order a candidate’s lunch incorrectly to see how they handle potential conflict.  Some say to make an effort to be mean to the candidate to see how they handle working with difficult people.  There are likely many other variations of this.  The problem is that all of these scenarios will send good IT professionals running in the opposite direction.  Especially since the tech field is a job seeker’s market, IT staffing agencies strongly caution against disrespecting the candidate.  The US is still experiencing a real shortage of good, qualified IT professionals.  Keep in mind that candidates are using an interview to decide what working at your company will be like.  If you’re awful to them in an interview, they’ll decide to seek out other IT jobs where they will be treated well.  It’s important to note that you can always ask a candidate and their references how they handle difficult people or stressful situations.  Most people are very forthcoming about this because if they don’t handle it well, they won’t want a job where it’s prevalent!

Don’t ask trendy questions just to ask them. If you don’t know why you’re asking a candidate what animal they’d be at the zoo, don’t ask them.  Some employers do have answers or thought processes they’re looking for when they ask these questions.  Others just ask these questions because they think it will be be fun to ask or doing so might convey that the company culture is creative and fun.  If you want to convey that you have a fun, creative culture, IT staffing agencies suggest that you just say so.  Or point to your Glassdoor reviews.  Or introduce the candidate to happy members of your team.  There are many ways to do this.  Keep in mind that interviews are already stressful for candidates.  Don’t make them even more uncomfortable by forcing them to answer questions that confuse them or surprise them.

Want to see our open IT jobs?  Follow us on LinkedIn.  We post new jobs daily!


Interview tips for hiring managers
Don’t make your candidates feel uncomfortable in job interviews– even if it’s trendy. Photo credit: Jarmoluk via Pixabay


What Does it Mean if My Interviewer Was Disengaged? 

When you go to interviews for IT jobs, you’re likely to be engaged in the process.  You may even be anxious and hyper-focused.  Sometimes IT recruiters find that hiring managers can actually be disengaged or appear completely disinterested in the process.  Does this mean you didn’t land the job? Not necessarily.

IT staffing firms find that there are a lot of reasons that hiring managers might be disengaged during an interview—and many of them don’t have anything to with your candidacy.  One of the main reasons that IT recruiting firms hear managers are disengaged is because they’re busy handling a major issue (possibly even a crisis) that just popped up.  This can especially be the case if you’re interviewing with a high-level manager.  If a crisis pops up at the very last-minute, or even if the hiring manager is really interested in the candidate, they’ll move forward with the job interview regardless.  If you’re feeling less confident in an interview because the hiring manager seems uninterested or keeps checking email, consider this: maybe a hiring manager wants to meet with you so badly he or she will do it even if they’re in the middle of a dealing with a big production issue, a looming release date, or a massive security breach of a their company’s data.

Besides major crises or work demands, a hiring manager could be less engaged in the interview process for another reason: perhaps they’re not a key decision-maker.  Sometimes IT recruiting companies find that an employer will require certain managers to be on the hiring committee, even if they don’t have much influence (or interest) with the decision.  They might seem checked-out during the interview because they actually are. And that means nothing about your candidacy.  A disengaged manager could be simply sitting in on the interview, allowing the rest of the hiring team to drive the process.

So what should you do if your interviewer spends your whole conversation looking at email, or asking very few questions?  Technical recruiters suggest you just let it go and do your best anyways.  Don’t give up on the interview or start doubting yourself.  Focus on the questions asked and building a rapport with the other interviewers (if any).

You might talk to your IT recruiters about it afterwards, and they may have an answer for you.  Perhaps not.  The hiring process can be unpredictable, so you can’t analyze things for signs.  Put your energy towards working with your IT staffing companies until you find the right role for you.  Who knows—you might just have won over that very disengaged interview.

Want to see our open IT jobs?  Follow us on LinkedIn.  We post new jobs daily!


IT job interviews
There are a lot of reasons why your interviewer might be checking their phone. Photo credit: rawpixel via Pixabay.


Common Questions (and Answers) about References

IT staffing firms find that references can be one of the last things on a candidate’s mind.  Maybe it’s because they’re so far along in the job search process.  Or, maybe it’s because they seem to require the least amount of work.  References just need to be called.  Resumes need to be written and polished, and you need to do extensive prep and study up on relevant technologies for interviews.  Whatever the case, IT recruiting firms find that many candidates and hiring managers have a lot of questions and even misconceptions about references.  Here are some common ones that IT recruiters get:

Do ‘backdoor references’ really happen?   This phenomenon is even more prevalent in the last 5 years or so because of LinkedIn’s growing popularity.  If you’re not familiar with a backdoor reference, this is the basic premise: hiring managers will reach out to any personal contacts they have at your previous employers.  IT staffing agencies find that this can be a problem particularly when you may had a bad experience working at an employer.  Even if you choose not to give anybody there as a reference, backdoor references can reveal the skeletons in your closet.  Backdoor references can be especially common when you’re looking for IT jobs because most people in this field are on LinkedIn.  (In fact, it may say something negative about you as an IT professional if you’re not on LinkedIn or other social media!)

Can managers really be forbidden from acting as a references? Yes, but some will do so anyways. There are companies that have set policies that forbid managers from giving a reference.  The severity of these policies and how strictly they’re enforced varies.  Some managers feel like they have the ability do this without any real consequences, so it could be worth considering this if you’re leaving a company with such a policy.  You don’t want to push too aggressively, but it may be worth asking if the manager would feel comfortable acting as a reference—you never know if they’ll say yes.

Is giving a bad reference illegal?   IT recruiting companies find that some candidates assume that managers will never give them a bad reference.  This is absolutely not true, so it’s important to act with this in mind.  Give only references who will say positive things about you.  Don’t burn any bridges.  Work hard to build good working relationships with coworkers and bosses.  As mentioned before, you never know if hiring managers will reach out for a backdoor reference. The point of a reference is that for employers to get a complete, honest picture of somebody as an employee.  While technical recruiters find that many managers will refrain from outright trashing somebody (just out of basic human decency), they will be honest if they see red flags.

Can I just hand over my references when it’s time?   This is a mistake IT staffing agencies see far too often.  Contact your references and give them a heads-up you’re on the hunt for new IT jobs.  Ask them if they wouldn’t mind acting as a reference for you.  Let them know a bit about the kinds of roles you’re looking for.  You want to treat them with courtesy, respect, and remember to thank them.  Bad references can ruin your candidacy, just as good ones can strengthen it.

Want to see our open IT jobs?  Follow us on LinkedIn.  We post new jobs daily!


References for jobs
Don’t forget to call your references before you start a job hunt. Photo credit: edar via Pixabay.


Tips for Employers on Hiring New Grads

Many employers in the tech space (or companies outside of the tech space that employ IT professionals) eagerly anticipate June and May every year because it’s the best time hire new grads.  New grads can bring a lot to a team.  They have fresh energy, new ideas, and may have exposure to some of the newest technologies.  Another perk of working with new grads is that they’re often a bit easier to ‘mold’.  Because they don’t have much working experience yet, new grads don’t have their own habits and are more open to following their employer’s procedures and corporate culture.  (It’s also worth noting that if you’re worried about hiring a millennial, a lot of the negative stereotypes about them simply aren’t true.  They’re just that: stereotypes!)   If you’re looking to fill some of your open IT jobs with new grads, check out some of these tips below from IT recruiting firms.   This information will help you make the most of graduation season and hopefully help you add some fresh new talent to your team!

1. Get moving ASAP. IT staffing firms suggest you start trying to fill positions meant for new grads as soon as possible.  The tech market is really a job seeker’s market.  (This goes double for particular areas of the country like Boston and San Francisco!)  Some of the top talent might already be working with IT recruiters before they even finish finals, never mind have a diploma in hand!  If you want to land the best talent for your open roles, IT recruiting agencies suggest that you not wait until June, July, etc.   While some students will delay their job search, many of the most accomplished and ambitions ones will want a job before they graduate.  Why not make sure they consider you as their employer?

2. Make an offer they won’t want to refuse. Appealing to new grads isn’t always about money.  There are some things that IT recruiting companies find don’t cost much, but really attract new or recent grads.

  • Firstly, offer telecommuting options and flexible schedules.  It’s understandable that most hiring managers don’t want to offer telecommuting or flexible schedules right off the bat.  However, presenting your hires with the ability to earn these perks over time can be very attractive to new grads.  Even just partial telecommuting options, like occasional work from home days, are big draws.
  • Another way IT staffing agencies suggest you can attract new grads is by offering mentoring and growth opportunities.  New grads want to land jobs now, but they’re also concerned about their futures beyond their first jobs.  New or recent grads want to land jobs in which they’ll have the chance to learn and grow as a professional.  Consider offering an official or unofficial mentoring program, training opportunities, subsidies for continued learning, and/or the chance to grow in the company.  None of these things need to cost much money, but they’ll go a very long way in attracting and keeping fresh new talent.
  • The last tactic that IT staffing companies suggest is to allow for some creativity.  2017’s grads will want to have the opportunity to think creatively at their jobs.  Consider giving your employees chances to do things like hackathons, or just give them the autonomy and room to solve problems creatively themselves.  This kind of perk can be great not only for attracting new grads, but also for the company itself!

Want to see our open IT jobs?  Follow us on LinkedIn.  We post new jobs daily!

Hiring new grads
New grads want to work at places that offer chances to learn and grow as a professional. Photo credit: maura24 via Pixabay.



Use This Checklist Before Posting Your Technical Resume

Most IT professionals don’t enjoy writing or updating resumes.  Besides the fact that writing resumes is an inherently unpleasant activity, technical resumes can be even more difficult.  IT recruiters find that many candidates struggle with the balance between providing enough detail for technically-savvy readers and so much detail that managers and technical recruiters feel like they’re looking an unreadable novel of technical jargon.  But in the end, creating a great resume is always worth it because it lands you great IT jobs.  Here’s a checklist that IT staffing companies suggest you use before posting your resume.

1. Do you have a ‘Technical Proficiencies’ section at the top of your resume? Pull out all of your technical skills and put them in one well-organized section at the very top of your resume.  This section is one of the best ways to catch the eyes of hiring managers and IT recruiting firms who are sifting through hundreds or thousands of resumes.  Don’t forget to constantly update this section, too.  As you learn a new programming language, master Scrum, or get new certifications, add them in.  (IT recruiters would suggest that you only list technologies you have professional experience or certification in here.  Listing hobbies won’t help you here.  You don’t want to suggest you have a skill that you actually don’t.  You’ll either be found out in an interview, or worse, on the job!)   You could be missing out on IT jobs if you don’t!

2. Are your bullets effective? Do the bullets under each job just list the basic responsibilities of your roles?  Time to fix that.  Entice IT staffing agencies with bullets that list your achievements in these roles.  Help them see the value you added to your team.  You might have some technical details in here, but the point isn’t to be as thorough as possible.  Focus on adding bullets that help an employer picture you, making a difference at their company from day one!

3. Did you list more than 15 years of experience on your resume? Time to cut back.  There are a few reasons IT recruiting companies would suggest you do this.  Firstly, you want to protect yourself from age discrimination.  Unfortunately, most IT recruiters would agree that the tech field can be especially unforgiving when it comes to age discrimination.  Since you don’t have to give more than 10-15 years of experience on your resume, just protect yourself and stop there.  Another reason that technical recruiters would suggest you delete experience after the 10-15 year mark is because the resume isn’t really helpful after that point anyways.  You want to highlight the kinds of technologies and projects that employers are working on now.  Since the field is changing so quickly, the experience after 10-15 years may not even be relevant!    The last reason to delete experience after 10-15 years is for length.  IT professionals can have longer resumes, but you don’t want to post a resume that’s as long as War and Peace.  Nobody really wants to read it and it might even turn off hiring managers.  So take the old experience off your resume, it’s not helping and it may even actually hurt you!


IT resumes
Don’t post your resume before using this checklist. Photo credit: TeroVesalainen via Pixabay.


Want to see our open IT jobs?  Follow us on LinkedIn.  We post new jobs daily!

Why You Shouldn’t Apply to a Company or Job Twice

Sometimes IT recruiters find that candidates may apply more than once to a company.  They might do this because they forget they’ve already applied, because they want to show they’re very interested in the role, or maybe they just really want to work at that company.  Whichever the case, technical recruiters find this doesn’t usually help candidates.  In fact, it will probably ruin their chances of landing IT jobs.  Here’s why IT staffing firms recommend that you don’t apply to a company or job twice.

Don’t apply twice because you like multiple roles. IT staffing agencies find that if you apply to multiple roles, especially ones that are different, you run the risk of looking disorganized and/or that you aren’t particularly passionate about any kind of work.  Firstly, if you apply twice to the same role in a short period of time, you’ll look disorganized or perhaps not detail-oriented.  Since both qualities are usually necessary for IT roles, that’s not going to help your candidacy!

Secondly, especially in the tech field, employers like to see candidates with a passion for a specific kind of work.  When you apply to various kinds of roles, it can seem like you don’t have a clear idea of the kind of work you want to do in your next role.  Submit just one application.  Better yet, reach out to your IT recruiting companies to submit resumes on your behalf.  They may have connections at the company and will make sure your resume gets seen (rather than dropped into the abyss of all other applications).

Don’t apply a second time to a company when your IT staffing companies have submitted you.  Or, warn your technical recruiters that you’ve already applied to a job when they want to submit you to it as well.  Most companies will just cancel out an application if they get it from both the candidate and from IT recruiting firms.  Keep a running list of the jobs you apply to yourself and the jobs your IT recruiters submit you to.  If your recruiters mention a job you’ve already applied to, make sure they know that.  They may be able to strengthen your candidacy by putting a in a good word for you with managers they know.  But IT recruiters can’t do this unless you talk to them about it first!


IT job applications
Applying twice could lead to the same result as not applying at all! Photo credit: Geralt via Pixabay.


Want to see our open IT jobs?  Follow us on LinkedIn.  We post new jobs daily!


Tips for May and June Tech Grads

If you’re part of the class of 2017, you may be planning to push that job search off until later in the summer.  The tech field is a job seeker’s market, right?  Why not kick back and take a little break before entering the workforce? Don’t be tempted to do this.  Unfortunately, the tech field is a bit less of a job seeker’s market for entry-level grads.  IT staffing companies find that there are absolutely less open IT jobs out there for recent grads.  You also don’t want to limit your options.  If you wait until later in the summer or fall, IT recruiters will have filled plenty of the jobs with coveted employers.  Starting your job search doesn’t have to be so arduous, though.  Here are 4 simple things you can do to start searching for IT jobs now.

1. Make your resume visible to employers and technical recruiters.  Post your resume on Monster, Dice, LinkedIn, etc.  Make a public, professional LinkedIn profile.  Don’t just rely on your school’s internal job portals.  If you’re a programming student, get on Github or similar sites.  IT staffing agencies will be looking for great candidates there, too.

2. While you’re at it, reach out to IT staffing firms.  Find some trusted IT recruiting companies in your area and reach out to and pass along your resume.  Even if you’re working on your final exams, they can begin your job search for you now!

3. Do your research on the kinds of roles you prefer your salary expectations.  Make sure to take your location into consideration here.  IT recruiting firms find that sometimes new grads will price themselves out of great jobs because they don’t have realistic salary expectations.  Your IT recruiters can help you out a bit, but it’s also important for you to do your own research prior to conversations with them.

4. Get a real email address and clean up your social media.  You don’t want to keep your school email address anymore—you’re going to be a professional soon!  Get an email address that you won’t be embarrassed to share with potential employers and IT recruiting firms.   Make sure you clean out all pictures, quotes, comments etc on your social media that you wouldn’t want a future boss to see.  IT recruiting agencies definitely see candidates with terrible social media profiles miss out on roles.


Graduate IT jobs
Graduating in May or June? Time to get a new email address! Photo credit: vloveland via Pixabay.


Want to see our open IT jobs?  Follow us on LinkedIn.  We post new jobs daily!



Fix Your Summary on Your Technical Resume

When you’re polishing your resume for IT recruiters, you want every change to be as impactful as possible.  Why waste time updating a technical resume when every word doesn’t increase your chances of landing your dream IT jobs?  One really powerful section of your resume is the summary.  Great summaries can hook technical recruiters and potential employers because they’re usually right at the top of the resume.  Here’s how to create a more powerful summary.

1. Delete all statements that are about subjective, personal qualities. IT staffing companies and employers aren’t interested in statements like ‘hard worker.’  If anything, IT staffing companies want to hear that you’re a hard worker from somebody who’s qualified to say that about you: a manager, team leader, possibly a coworker.

2. Make each statement speak to the IT jobs you want to land in the future. What are qualities your target employers want? What are the kinds of accomplishments or experience they’re looking for?  That’s what you should put in your bullet points.

3. Keep it a reasonable length. Some IT recruiting companies find that people will turn in a summary that runs to the end of page 1.  At some point, IT recruiters and employers may stop reading if your summary is too long.  If it’s in bullet points, more than 5 will probably be too many.  If it’s in a paragraph format, try keeping your summary to 4 or 5 sentences.

4. Mention key technologies in your summary. You don’t want to list all technologies (that’s for your ‘Technical Proficiencies’ section), but if the jobs you’re looking for will all require, say, a certain programming language, make sure to include that you have experience using it!


IT resumes
Leave all the subjective statements out of your summary. Photo credit: StartupStockPhotos via Pixabay.