Advice for a new Technical Recruiter

robp12robp12 Member Posts: 15 ■□□□□□□□□□
Hey everyone,

I just graduated from college last month, Elon University in North Carolina to be exact. I was recruited in school by an IT staffing firm and recently started full-time employment as a Technical Recruiter last week. I've been training at the company headquarters for the past 5 days, with 5 more days to go before I move to Washington DC to really begin work at my new branch office.

I've been working hard in training and reading a lot about the profession online. From what I've gathered, it doesn't have the best reputation among tech professionals as a lot of the recruiters are ignorant of the technology skill sets, know nothing about the people they speak to, etc. Most of the training has been in terms of how to speak on the phone, the actual hiring process, etc. Unfortunately, training has been rather light on the actually technology that we're dealing with when hiring candidates and I really want to get a good grasp on that before I make an ass out of myself.
I'd love for any tech professionals who have specifically dealt with recruiters to provide some insight on what you think about the whole process. What is the biggest difference between the good recruiters and the shitty ones? What can I do in my spare time to become better at my job and not an annoyance to the people I work with?
I've designed and maintained a few blog/websites during my time in college, so I have the smallest bit of a technical background. I've also been doing a little work in with HTML, JQuery, JavaScript and CSS to have a base-line knowledge of how the technologies work. However, I'd really appreciate any websites, resources, blogs that I can use to read up on technology to get a better understanding of the skills that I'm hiring for? I want to be good at my job so that I can actually provide value to the people I recruit, not be an annoyance and burden. I'd appreciate any advice you could give me about how to become an effective and intelligent technical recruiter who can actually help candidates, not just blindly submit resumes like an idiot.

Thanks for the time and any responses,
Currently Studying:
Northwestern University - Masters of Science, Information Systems GPA 4.0
CCNA certification

Completed: Elon University - BSBA, Marketing May 2012


  • higherhohigherho Member Posts: 882
    Please don't be one of those recruiters that will chop your head off right away or try to be a brutal car sales men =/ Always try to sniff out the fakes and don't fall for catch phrases. For example; I put on my old resume that I went through half of the CCNP networking academy and the recruiter thought I had my CCNP.
  • lordylordy Member Posts: 632 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Welcome to TechExams, Rob.

    I think you have a very good attitude towards your job so let me tell you, what I think. For me recruiters don't need to have a deep technical understanding, that is not their job. From my point of view you should try to find the closest match possible and have the respective technical manager test the candidate in the interview.

    However, to find the closest match to the requirements I think it is important that you understand a good number of the acronyms used in technology and how they relate to each other. Example: You don't need to know what the difference between SAN, NAS and DAS is, but you should know that they all relate to Data Storage so if a candidate lists them you can check Storage on the requirements lists. Additionally I think it would be good if you got yourself an overview of the certifications from the major vendors (e.g. Microsoft, Cisco, CompTIA, Oracle etc.) to have an idea on what knowledge level the person is/should be that is applying with their certs on the resume.

    I think what many people find annoying today is that many HR people just seem to do pattern matching. For example, lets assume that the manager tells you he needs a new network guy on CCNP level. At this point many people seem to search their Inbox for the term "CCNP" and just pick out those candidates. However, a good HR person understands that a person who does not (yet) have Cisco cert but has years of experience in the field might also be a good fit. Sometimes even a better fit than a CCNP with just months of experience.
    Working on CCNP: [X] SWITCH --- [ ] ROUTE --- [ ] TSHOOT
    Goal for 2014: RHCA
    Goal for 2015: CCDP
  • RoguetadhgRoguetadhg CompTIA A+, Network+. Member Posts: 2,489 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I came across a few recruiters. Most do what lordy say: search for specific criteria. Bottom line. Recruiters get a lot of applications, so going through each one, one by one, is going to absorb time. It may be impossible to really go through each application with a fine-tooth comb. It's the truth of things. It's sad.

    To have some type of technical knowledge of how things work would be best than being blind about it. I don't know if you're the first-line, or final word. For each, Having that "Base-line" knowledge is more than what I can say about some of the good persons I've met. There might be a board of persons, tech professionals in your company that would do the time to do interviews with you. They could definitely point the way of understanding what's on a resume.

    They'd be happy to have someone qualified and decent to work with than someone without a clue just to collect a pay check.

    Experience is generally better than Certifications. Experience comes wisdom of making mistakes. Mistakes that they've learned to avoid in the future (hopefully). As Fred Brooks said: "Good Judgement comes from experience and experience comes from bad judgement."

    Body language is something you'll find out as well - just generally. Be wary of people that seem closed-off.

    There's a lot of things you'll discover while interviewing. You'll meet new people, good and bad. Just treat people as you'd like to be treated - fairly!

    Good luck, and welcome to tech exams! You'll do fine. :)
    In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure.
    TE Threads: How to study for the CCENT/CCNA, Introduction to Cisco Exams

  • robp12robp12 Member Posts: 15 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I will definitely take all of your advice into consideration and attempt to use it to my best ability. I begin talking on the phone with candidates this Wednesday which I'm really excited for, I just hope I don't make an idiot out of myself. I'll surely make some technology mistakes in regards to terms and the like, but I'll be doing my best to learn quickly on the job.

    I actually am quite passionate about technology, specifically websites, website design and search engine optimization, so I'm hoping my interest in the subject will help me to be easier to talk to for the candidates and better able to represent and identify with them.
    Currently Studying:
    Northwestern University - Masters of Science, Information Systems GPA 4.0
    CCNA certification

    Completed: Elon University - BSBA, Marketing May 2012
  • ptilsenptilsen Member Posts: 2,835 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Look for sales certifications. They are technology-light but still give you an understanding of what the technologies are used for.

    And for goodness' sake, read people's resumes. I hate recruiters who call and ask me a bunch of questions that are clearly answered on my resume. It's okay to get clarification and elaboration, but don't ask if someone has SQL experience when SQL is written all of their resume (as an example). Also, be willing to work over email. Employed professionals usually work business hours and can't get away from work to call you.
    Working B.S., Computer Science
    Complete: 55/120 credits SPAN 201, LIT 100, ETHS 200, AP Lang, MATH 120, WRIT 231, ICS 140, MATH 215, ECON 202, ECON 201, ICS 141, MATH 210, LING 111, ICS 240
    In progress: CLEP US GOV,
    Next up: MATH 211, ECON 352, ICS 340
  • dave330idave330i Member Posts: 2,091 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Obviously you can't read every resume you come across, but at least read the summary/objective to see what they're interested in doing. I'd get e-mails from recruiters looking for network admin, SQL DBA, SharePoint developer, etc even though I clearly state in my objective that I'm looking for virtualization position.

    Also work with employers regarding expectation. You're not gonna get a CCIE for a junior network admin, you're not gonna get someone with every cert under the sun. It makes the posting look very amateurish.
    2018 Certification Goals: Maybe VMware Sales Cert
    "Simplify, then add lightness" -Colin Chapman
  • madisonmillermadisonmiller Banned Posts: 7 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Useful information, many thanks to the author. It is puzzling to me now, but in general, the usefulness and significance is overwhelming. Very much thanks again and best of luck!
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