So, it seems to be peoples first question, wherever you may be. “What do you do?”
“I am a Recruiter” I see their eyes glaze over, Next question: “What type of Recruitment?” I can feel that they are hoping that I am going to reply with something exciting and sexy, maybe recruiting top talent for the MI5, maybe this is their chance to be finally recognised to be the next James Bond.
“IT” I reply. Well that has really gone and done it now. If I’m lucky that reply is generally a conversation stopper. If not, I get “my son / brother / Auntie / friend (delete as appropriate) is really good with computers maybe I could put them in touch with you”
“Great! Thanks”, I reply trying to sound chipper whilst inside my soul dies just a little bit more…
So, what does an IT recruiter do, for those of you interested. I suppose it is pretty self-explanatory. I recruit people for the IT industry, but what is my worth? What can people expect?
Well it starts with a job spec. I can help you write a job spec or job ad or I can give you some bare bones to get those creative juices going. I can advise you what to put in or leave out. Job specs can be a little dry and people really want to get a feel for a role. Some job specs are too short and some are far too long and turn into something akin to my children’s Father Christmas wish list.
Talk! Yes I love to talk! But I also love to listen. Helpfully, I am extremely nosey which helps me to gain an understanding of the requirements and clients and candidates. No detail is too small, tell me everything! Help me understand the companies needs and culture so I can get “The feeling” of who will be a good fit and have a great long term career.
We search our own contacts and databases, external databases and recommendations to find the perfect candidate. Contrary to urban myth, us recruiters do not just bung up one cheap ad and send over all who applies! We do advertise, of course we do, just in case it brings someone “out of the woodwork” but we advertise across multiple boards and as more of a “catch all”, than actually really thinking it will be as simple as that. Maybe you get lucky and your one advert brings you the perfect candidate …… On that note maybe your one lottery ticket may come up trumps this weekend! I am not taking that chance though and I will hunt them high and hunt them low.
I will co-ordinate the interview process, sounds simple! However, sometimes getting diaries to align is like mission impossible. Pre interview I will give a candidates all the advise and prep to help them give the interview their best shot. I cannot however sit the interview for you, and nor would you want me to if you are a developer (see below for things I am not)
Post interview I will get you some feedback. Yes, candidates should get feedback and yes clients should also get feedback. If you both love each other then, Happy days! My work is done and I am more than happy to go off and write an invoice. But if not, we need feedback and constructive criticism so we can all learn from the experience.
I am an external recruiter. I work for a large range of companies, so I have a multitude of opportunities I can speak to candidates about and a multitude of candidates that I can speak to clients about. I have many long-term clients that I have recruited for, for many years. I have lots of stories or “case studies” (that sounds more professional) that I can tell you about.
I also have lots of returning candidates who have come back to me every time that have moved jobs. I know them very well. I understand their personality and where they are most likely to shine. On that note …..
What I don’t do, I don’t actively and purposefully recruit candidates out of my client’s companies to create a vacancy. I know some do, but it is bad practice. I think it is a bit like stealing someone’s wheels and then offering to sell them a new set.
I will however gladly place candidates who work for my clients who come to me of their own free will. I call this “The Rachel code of conduct” It is a small talent pool, and sometimes a feel a bit like a double agent but I always do the right thing.
I don’t perform reference checks. That is down to the client but I will obtain referee details to enable this.
I don’t blindly send out bulk’s of CV’s to clients on the off chance that “some mud will stick to the wall”. I do however take the time to understand your requirements and sent appropriate CV’s. Ok, sometimes I’m off target and get it wrong. Just be blunt and tell me. I’m a big girl … I can take it!
I don’t find everyone a job, I am not The Job Centre. It is not my duty to find everyone in the UK employment. I will gladly help anyone in anyway I can, and can give advice on CV’s and job hunting. I am a commercial business and I must find the exact talent and skill set that my client requires.
I am NOT a developer / programmer. I’m not that clever! I may talk the lingo but please be kind when explaining your coding projects in detail. I suppose you could say in the nicest possible way “I can talk the talk but not walk the walk”
I am NOT a HR legal advisor. I can talk through your problems with you and give common sense opinions but any more than that you need to speak to a specialist.
Back to what I am and do do . I am pretty easy going. I want you to hire the right candidates and I want this to be a successful long-term placement. If this is not working out in the first three months and let’s be honest you are going to know if somebody is not working out within the first few weeks. Then tell me and I will find you another candidate …… AND Shock! Horror! I will do this completely free of charge. Not only that but I will jump on this immediately. I will be “on it like a car bonnet” but only if you have paid my original bill in a timely fashion. Any professional person deserves to be paid in full and quickly for any work that they have done.
Maybe this has turned from what an IT Recruiter does and doesn’t do into something similar to a frequently asked question list. Or maybe even questions that you wished you frequently asked but don’t!