Recruiters

27 Mar 2008 - 12:55pm
6 years ago
10 replies
330 reads
SemanticWill
2007

"Hi, is this Will Evans," the unknown voice asked.

"Yes, it is, who is this?"

"This is Sarah X from CTR, Clueless Technical Resources, and we had an
opportunity that we think might be a great fit for you."

"Really - do tell?"

"We have a great opportunity for a 3 month contract as a J2EE Architect for
a Fortune 500 company in Des Moines, Iowa."

"Excellent - you do realize that I have never coded java before, I am moving
to DC on Saturday...and don't travel for short term contract work..."

"Can I ask you what your rate is"

"Um... a three month contract 1000 miles from where I live doing something I
have never done for a big evil multinational that destroys labor unions
while not offering health care benefits to it's employees....can I get back
to you on that?"
------
Why can't recruiters read?

I know I have had a resume posted on Monster since about 2003, and I do
update it every 6 months or so even though I have never gotten a job from
monster - but what really burns my goat is that I very clearly say:
1. I have done IA and IxD work for a really long time
2. I have no interest in relocating for short term contracts
3. how much I cost

Yet they never read that. I want to put together a list of all the "Good"
not evil recruiting firms that actually know the difference between an
interaction designer, information architect, and UI engineer - at least
knows enough to know we aren't Java or .Net engineers.

Post back to me recruiters that are great -on either side of the hiring
equation. It might be nice to have a list of places to go that "get us"

--
~ will

"Where you innovate, how you innovate,
and what you innovate are design problems"

Comments

27 Mar 2008 - 2:29pm
Jay Morgan
2006

While I suffer the same predicament, I find it amusing that ask "Why can't
recruiters read?". A common assumption is that users do not read when trying
to accomplish a task.

Whenever they contact me w/ "Leonardo job" or a J2EE job, I remind myself
that these users are motivated by incentives to find candidates.
Unfortunately, that mixes with their nearly complete lack of familiarity
with terms that we take for granted.

You could mine that opportunity and build an app that aggregates jobs and
candidates, then maps skills. That might look like a wizard to an uninformed
recruiter, and it would be a big relief to people like us.

I hope this helps.

On Thu, Mar 27, 2008 at 12:55 PM, W Evans <wkevans4 at gmail.com> wrote:

> "Hi, is this Will Evans," the unknown voice asked.
>
> "Yes, it is, who is this?"
>
> "This is Sarah X from CTR, Clueless Technical Resources, and we had an
> opportunity that we think might be a great fit for you."
>
> "Really - do tell?"
>
> "We have a great opportunity for a 3 month contract as a J2EE Architect
> for
> a Fortune 500 company in Des Moines, Iowa."
>
> "Excellent - you do realize that I have never coded java before, I am
> moving
> to DC on Saturday...and don't travel for short term contract work..."
>
> "Can I ask you what your rate is"
>
> "Um... a three month contract 1000 miles from where I live doing something
> I
> have never done for a big evil multinational that destroys labor unions
> while not offering health care benefits to it's employees....can I get
> back
> to you on that?"
> ------
> Why can't recruiters read?
>
> I know I have had a resume posted on Monster since about 2003, and I do
> update it every 6 months or so even though I have never gotten a job from
> monster - but what really burns my goat is that I very clearly say:
> 1. I have done IA and IxD work for a really long time
> 2. I have no interest in relocating for short term contracts
> 3. how much I cost
>
> Yet they never read that. I want to put together a list of all the "Good"
> not evil recruiting firms that actually know the difference between an
> interaction designer, information architect, and UI engineer - at least
> knows enough to know we aren't Java or .Net engineers.
>
> Post back to me recruiters that are great -on either side of the hiring
> equation. It might be nice to have a list of places to go that "get us"
>
> --
> ~ will
>
> "Where you innovate, how you innovate,
> and what you innovate are design problems"
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

--
Jay A. Morgan
Information Architect. Business man.

27 Mar 2008 - 3:01pm
Anonymous

On Mar 27, 2008, at 12:29 PM, Jay Morgan wrote:
>
> You could mine that opportunity and build an app that aggregates
> jobs and
> candidates, then maps skills. That might look like a wizard to an
> uninformed
> recruiter, and it would be a big relief to people like us.
>

Or you could get into the recruiting business yourself. My experience
has been that this can't be automated very well - its a very personal
kind of thing.

28 Mar 2008 - 1:58am
cfmdesigns
2004

On Mar 27, 2008, at 10:55 AM, W Evans wrote:

> I know I have had a resume posted on Monster since about 2003, and I
> do
> update it every 6 months or so even though I have never gotten a job
> from
> monster - but what really burns my goat is that I very clearly say:
> 1. I have done IA and IxD work for a really long time
> 2. I have no interest in relocating for short term contracts
> 3. how much I cost

About once a year, I get an e-mail query from someone who found my
resume online.

One that I posted to my first personal website. Last update: March
21, 2000. I leave it up just for giggles these days, and to give me
an excuse to be rude to anyone who sends me a response from it.

-- Jim

28 Mar 2008 - 6:53am
SemanticWill
2007

As Dick Chaney showed us all last year - the "shotgun approach," isn't
always the most effective, is it?

Thanks for your comment :-)

~w

On Fri, Mar 28, 2008 at 7:27 AM, Ron Vutpakdi <rvutpakdi at entouch.net> wrote:

> W Evans wrote:
> > Why can't recruiters read?
> >
> > I know I have had a resume posted on Monster since about 2003, and I do
> > update it every 6 months or so even though I have never gotten a job
> from
> > monster - but what really burns my goat is that I very clearly say:
> > 1. I have done IA and IxD work for a really long time
> > 2. I have no interest in relocating for short term contracts
> > 3. how much I cost
> >
> I think that a fair number of recruiters take the shotgun approach: if
> you throw enough shot into the air, eventually, something will hit. Or,
> they just blindly call/email whatever their automated tools hand them.
>
> I get the same sort of emails and calls from a local recruiting agency.
> They are using a 9 year old resume, and when I send them an updated
> resume and indicate that I now do IxD work, I'll still occasionally get
> calls about C++ and Cognos BI tools (which I used 9 years ago).
>
> Ron
>
> PS: On the flip side, at the end of 2006, when we were trying to fill a
> design/usability position, we had this one fellow apply. His main
> qualification, as far as I could tell, was that he completed a month of
> an automotive mechanics course. He also applied for every other
> position that the company had open, from sales to support to those
> requiring highly technical domain expertise. Again, shotgun approach.
>
>

28 Mar 2008 - 6:27am
vutpakdi
2003

W Evans wrote:
> Why can't recruiters read?
>
> I know I have had a resume posted on Monster since about 2003, and I do
> update it every 6 months or so even though I have never gotten a job from
> monster - but what really burns my goat is that I very clearly say:
> 1. I have done IA and IxD work for a really long time
> 2. I have no interest in relocating for short term contracts
> 3. how much I cost
>

I think that a fair number of recruiters take the shotgun approach: if
you throw enough shot into the air, eventually, something will hit. Or,
they just blindly call/email whatever their automated tools hand them.

I get the same sort of emails and calls from a local recruiting agency.
They are using a 9 year old resume, and when I send them an updated
resume and indicate that I now do IxD work, I'll still occasionally get
calls about C++ and Cognos BI tools (which I used 9 years ago).

Ron

PS: On the flip side, at the end of 2006, when we were trying to fill a
design/usability position, we had this one fellow apply. His main
qualification, as far as I could tell, was that he completed a month of
an automotive mechanics course. He also applied for every other
position that the company had open, from sales to support to those
requiring highly technical domain expertise. Again, shotgun approach.

28 Mar 2008 - 7:09am
Scott McDaniel
2007

That does sort of bring to mind questions-
what ~does~ getting into IT recruiting involve?
Is it like being a real estate agent/broker, but for IT jobs?
Special degrees beyond the obvious? HR background?
Nice smile?
Most of my interactions have been positive when I've been
looking at positions, at least a combination of good intent
and luck that the offerings were at least in the neighborhood where
I was looking. This seems to vary wildly with the shotgun calls I get
("No, I don't know Esperanto."), usually when I'm feeling solid in my current
position.

On Thu, Mar 27, 2008 at 4:01 PM, Brett Ingram <bingram at pandora.com> wrote:
>
>
> Or you could get into the recruiting business yourself. My experience
> has been that this can't be automated very well - its a very personal
> kind of thing.
>

--
'Life' plus 'significance' = magic. ~ Grant Morrison

28 Mar 2008 - 9:24am
Jackie O\'Hare
2008

At the risk of really getting you guys going - I'd like to take a stab
at this.
I've been a creative recruiter for two years, working at a company
that's been around for 30 years, working primarily in tech and creative,
so I know at least a little about what is going on....

To start with - NO - most of us do not have a specialized degree;
however, a good number of us have worked in the advertising/creative
industries at some point in our careers. I started as a fresh grad with
an English degree from a liberal arts school. I got my job because I
have excellent communication skills, am a quick learner, and have an eye
for design.

So, NO, we don't actually do what you do. Most of us are not hands on
designers, information architects, or interaction designers. I had a
client once who was outraged that I couldn't read HTML code to determine
whether it would be pixel perfect - I told her that if I could, I
wouldn't be doing my job, I would be coding! In other words, if we
could do what you guys do, barring some exceptions we would be doing it,
not recruiting.

My company is very specialized, so 98% of the orders we work on are the
same song and dance. We know the types of candidates who do it, often
we are friendly with them, and are able to get our clients the talent
they want and our candidates the exact type of work they are looking
for. Everyone is happy and there is much rejoicing in the streets!

That said, sometimes we do get an order that we don't understand. I am
guilty of once writing a job ad that read something like, "first you
wash the LAMP with the SOAP". At my company, when we don't understand
an order we do a variety of things to get clarity - online research,
drill the client, call up a candidate we have a relationship with that
can shed some light on it (one of our recruiters is married to a hybrid
AD/Flash Developer at an NYC agency, so he gets calls sometimes). All
of those things completed, though, sometimes we still don't understand
and we have a client that is crying and wants to give us money to find
someone to help them. This is when things get troublesome.

We often are forced to rely on skill searches to direct us to a
candidate pool - so if you have the appropriate language on your resume,
you will be worth calling in times of great desperation. (Also - our
own candidate database is the most poorly designed piece of crap
software that I have ever seen or tried to work with - but again, that's
something that we can't fix because we don't have the software
engineering skills to pull that off.) We often know that you haven't
coded HTML/CSS for several years when we call. We know that your IDEAL
position is not what we are presenting you with. But sometimes -
probably more often than you'd believe - the stars line up and a
candidate who is a little rusty in a particular area happens to be
willing to do some work for a very desperate client for the proper
amount of compensation. This won't happen, though, unless we make the
call.

Recruiters aspire to be matchmakers. It is "personal" in that way.
However, sometimes in a desperate attempt to keep our clients happy, we
have to make embarrassing cold calls. I don't like it any more than you
guys do.

I hope that helps and I'm bracing for your responses.

Jackie O'Hare | Manager of Interactive Recruitment
TTS Personnel, Inc
Jackie at ttspersonnel dot com

28 Mar 2008 - 7:01pm
Helen Killingbeck
2005

I didn't trim this post when replying, because I think Jackie's post is a
great read. I'd like to thank Jackie as well as Will for this informative
thread. I think that a face to face with recruiters at a local chapter of
your favourite UX/IxD/UPA/IA meeting would be helpful.

Helen
On Fri, Mar 28, 2008 at 10:24 AM, Jackie O'Hare <Jackie at ttspersonnel.com>
wrote:

>
> At the risk of really getting you guys going - I'd like to take a stab
> at this.
> I've been a creative recruiter for two years, working at a company
> that's been around for 30 years, working primarily in tech and creative,
> so I know at least a little about what is going on....
>
> To start with - NO - most of us do not have a specialized degree;
> however, a good number of us have worked in the advertising/creative
> industries at some point in our careers. I started as a fresh grad with
> an English degree from a liberal arts school. I got my job because I
> have excellent communication skills, am a quick learner, and have an eye
> for design.
>
> So, NO, we don't actually do what you do. Most of us are not hands on
> designers, information architects, or interaction designers. I had a
> client once who was outraged that I couldn't read HTML code to determine
> whether it would be pixel perfect - I told her that if I could, I
> wouldn't be doing my job, I would be coding! In other words, if we
> could do what you guys do, barring some exceptions we would be doing it,
> not recruiting.
>
> My company is very specialized, so 98% of the orders we work on are the
> same song and dance. We know the types of candidates who do it, often
> we are friendly with them, and are able to get our clients the talent
> they want and our candidates the exact type of work they are looking
> for. Everyone is happy and there is much rejoicing in the streets!
>
> That said, sometimes we do get an order that we don't understand. I am
> guilty of once writing a job ad that read something like, "first you
> wash the LAMP with the SOAP". At my company, when we don't understand
> an order we do a variety of things to get clarity - online research,
> drill the client, call up a candidate we have a relationship with that
> can shed some light on it (one of our recruiters is married to a hybrid
> AD/Flash Developer at an NYC agency, so he gets calls sometimes). All
> of those things completed, though, sometimes we still don't understand
> and we have a client that is crying and wants to give us money to find
> someone to help them. This is when things get troublesome.
>
> We often are forced to rely on skill searches to direct us to a
> candidate pool - so if you have the appropriate language on your resume,
> you will be worth calling in times of great desperation. (Also - our
> own candidate database is the most poorly designed piece of crap
> software that I have ever seen or tried to work with - but again, that's
> something that we can't fix because we don't have the software
> engineering skills to pull that off.) We often know that you haven't
> coded HTML/CSS for several years when we call. We know that your IDEAL
> position is not what we are presenting you with. But sometimes -
> probably more often than you'd believe - the stars line up and a
> candidate who is a little rusty in a particular area happens to be
> willing to do some work for a very desperate client for the proper
> amount of compensation. This won't happen, though, unless we make the
> call.
>
> Recruiters aspire to be matchmakers. It is "personal" in that way.
> However, sometimes in a desperate attempt to keep our clients happy, we
> have to make embarrassing cold calls. I don't like it any more than you
> guys do.
>
> I hope that helps and I'm bracing for your responses.
>
> Jackie O'Hare | Manager of Interactive Recruitment
> TTS Personnel, Inc
> Jackie at ttspersonnel dot com
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

28 Mar 2008 - 5:32pm
bcopello at ari...
2006

"what ~does~ getting into IT recruiting involve?
Is it like being a real estate agent/broker, but for IT jobs?
Special degrees beyond the obvious? HR background?
Nice smile?"

I thought I would chime in as I am an IT Recruiter.

The issues raised are all legitimate. It is true that many recruiters
practice a "shotgun" approach.

I do not subscribe to that as IT has developed in such a dynamic and
specialized way; that finding the right person for an opportunity is all
about the details. From a credibility stand point it does not serve
anyones interest to propose a role to a candidate nor a candidate to a
client; that is not a suitable match; this undermines the confidence of
your constituency on all fronts. As a individual; I have also suffered
the slings and arrows of blasts and errant calls that were no where near
my profile. Mostly to blame are the companies and learship of these
companies; they have no clue; to them it is a sales model and you throw
as much dung at the walls and see what sticks; so they are often inclined
to hire someone that has no clue and pay them less and cultivate a rote
machine like manner; then to hire someone who approaches in a
professional, analytical and yes ethical manner with the proper etiquette
and builds a following that is based on mutual respect and interest.

Most are not trained; simply given simple templates; but there are those
that have an appreciation and the intelligence that develop into more
reputable and effective advocates and agents that serve their end clients
and candidates well. I have maintained relationships and developed
friendships with indiviudals that I help facilitate an opportunity for
since 1999; when I entered the industry and have earn the respect of
clients and candidates alike; for providing a timely and cost effective
service that has led to the development of successful careers and the
loyalty of hiring managers that value my efforts and input.

I have also learned much from the folks; (..your mailing list
included.;o)that I serve and congregate with and it has made me a better
recruiter and I too have learned to accept that in the execution of my
duties and with all the best intentions; I will deal with candidates who
are dishonest, self serving, deluded and lacking in social grace and
ethical value; but as in life and in balance; the good outshines the bad.

...and yes; I'm advise that I have a great smile..infectious even; a
degree in Theatre Mgmt, classically trained In Stanislavski Method,
politcally active and socially conscious, a frustrated writer and most of
all... my kids dad.

Just wanted you to give you a beacon of sorts. I thought the litany of
comparisons might lead to include; Theatrical agents and lawyers; but
thats another post subject altogether...:o)

-Bert

28 Mar 2008 - 8:49pm
vutpakdi
2003

Helen Killingbeck wrote:
> I think that a face to face with recruiters at a local chapter of
> your favourite UX/IxD/UPA/IA meeting would be helpful.
>
Oooh, now that's a really clever and mutually beneficial idea for a good
recruiter and a savvy local chapter to exploit.

I have met some very good recruiters. Ones that have some understanding
of what might be involved or at least the meanings of words and
acronyms. Ones that take the long view and work at establishing
relationships.

I don't mind getting "not a particularly good match" calls or emails
from these recruiters since I'd like to take the long view as well.
Even if I'm not interested in that particular position or that position
at this time, down the road, I might be interested in another position,
know of someone who might be, or might need to fill a position myself.
Then, I'll contact the ones that didn't make me feel like I got hit by
errant buckshot.

Ron

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