Tell me about your experiences with tech recruiters

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I'm mid-career, which means I've already been through one round of job-hunting where I got "help" from recruiters. On the one hand, having someone write you about job opportunities is awesome. On the other, they can be very unprofessional, and I get the feeling that there are a class of recruiter jobs and another entire pile of jobs that recruiters don't have access to. And I wonder if that second pile is where all the "good" jobs are.

What has been your experience? Did you work with a recruiter at your current role? Do you recommend or advise against letting a / many recruiters steer your job hunt?

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Mine is probably different as I'm still a student, but I've been coding for about 2 years now as a hobby/student. I personally have given up completely on recruiters, I won't even talk to them. They basically just spam my inbox ten times a day with job postings for senior level positions. It's obvious that they haven't even read my resume as it clearly states that I'm in school, and then they act annoyed with me when they call me and find that out. As if I'm wasting their time!


On the other, they can be very unprofessional

Heh, like the one that keeps commenting on hot girls on Linkedin. My home feed is a lot of Playboy Playmates and HR recruiting photos where this dude is hitting on the women in the photos. My coworker who also is connected with this dude on Linkedin and doesn't have this problem, so what the hell Linkedin algorithms... He did have a decent lead and seemed to remember me as a person to give good recs, but he is a total ghost when I'm not useful to his jobs.

I rather not deal with Playboy bunny dude and keep control of my candidacy myself, but I'm also not job hunting so I can be picky. Hopefully, someone with more experience dealing with recruiters can help :) (Internal recruiters are a different beast -- they're more HR and just drunk post on LinkedIn at 1am) ((maybe I should start declining Linkedin connections))


Your LinkedIn experience sounds very different than mine!


It depends on the "structure" of your deal with the recruiter. Contract to hire/contract they are literally a leach that will take money out of your paycheck. Also with both of these types the company you are actually on-site for doing work may not know how much you are getting paid. They are paying recruiting company something and expecting you are being paid fairly by the recruiting company. In contract to hire and contract I find that the incentives for all 3 parties (you dev / recruiting company/end client) are not properly aligned.

All that said I have worked a few contracts with recruiters and it has helped build my resume. One of the jobs I truly would have never been able to get an interview on my own. The company only uses recruiters so they do not have to hire internal hr/recruiting staff.

There are pro's and con's to working with recruiters however what annoys me most is the lack of transparency the recruiters show to us the developers. They are brokers and a fair deal is one where all sides have all the facts and can make an informed decision. I do respect truthful honest recruiters and see their purpose in the marketplace the others not so much.

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Amber Wilkie profile image
Javascript and friends. Yogi. Photographer. Cook and eater. Entrepreneur.