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How Technical Recruiters can better interact with Developers

Zachary Hadjah
Software Engineer at Liberty IT Solutions
・4 min read

Before accepting my current position, I had been networking with recruiters all over LinkedIn. After having hours worth of interactions, I decided I could shed some light on how recruiters could better interact with developers and achieve a higher success rate.

The same way recruiters are always looking for keywords, we developers are as well! Though they may recruit for multiple companies using multiple languages, recruiters often times have 2 or 3 companies in which they work closely with. Putting keywords in their Linkedin headlines can prove very helpful.

For example:
Technical Recruiter at TekSystems | Full-Stack | Reactjs | Angular | Java | AWS | SQL | DevOps | Github

Having a basic understanding of the technology and what it does can also bridge the gap between both parties. For the recruiters reading, here is a basic run down:

Fullstack = Frontend and Backend

Frontend:
What the customer sees. React, Angular, Vue, HTML, CSS, and Bootstrap to name a few. These languages are used to create what the customer will see on screen.

Backend:
What the server executes. Java, C#, .Net, Ruby, Python, and many more. These languages will be used on the server side and will not be viewed by the customer.

SQL:
Anything pertaining to SQL will hold information inside a database such as all the bank accounts in a banks system, or all the students in a university.

DevOps:
Dev = Software Development
Ops = IT Operations
How software is managed.

CICD:
Dev Ops tactic used to maintain working code.

Github:
Where we store all of our code so it doesn’t get lost.

Another way recruiting agencies could boost their placement percentages and have a higher success rate is to cultivate good partnerships with the interviewers who will be asking questions to candidates. As this partnership grows, eventually have the senior technical recruiter ask if they can sit in on interviews.

Back in February, a recruiter from Apex Systems had contacted me about an interview with Microsoft. During the interview, the Senior Technical Recruiter of the Dallas Forth Worth office had attended the interview since it was virtual over Microsoft Teams. Since she sat quietly in the interview and observed, she can now better prep subsequent candidates on how Microsoft conducts its interviews. She'll know what behavioral questions are asked, what technical questions are asked, what some of the harder questions are, etc.

Recruiters are hired for their ability to sell candidates. If a candidate states their salary range of $100k - $120k, it's the recruiters job to get the candidate the $120k asking price. When sourcing potential candidates, focus on the candidates who are properly selling themselves on LinkedIn. Experience, extracurricular projects, articles and portfolio websites are all metrics you should use to gauge when cold messaging or filtering resumes. These four metrics can speak volumes as to how eager developers can be. Experience alone cannot replace eagerness. I've heard stories of senior developers walking out of interviews because they believed they were above some of the technical questions being asked of them in interviews. Candidates constantly showcasing their material on social media are the ones you should be focused on. Those candidates feel as though they need to prove themselves and will be attentive when you give them instructions to follow in order to secure a job offer.

Also, pay close attention to the stories of candidates and where they originate from. If you see a trend of students from UMASS Amherst getting job offers, or students from a specific Bootcamp being placed, it may be a good idea to reach out to the instructors of the institution in order to cultivate a relationship. This way, instead of prepping candidates 3 days before an interview, you'll have time to prep candidates 3 or 4 months ahead of their interviews. Look at this as an investment, you are investing in the candidate and your office’s growth.

One way you can prep future candidates is to have them set up portfolio sites. Portfolio sites are essential to showcasing one’s skill. These websites can even be created using a template in which the developer can modify with simple bootstrap knowledge that can be learned in a weekend. Themeforest and wrapbootstrap.com are two of the top websites when it comes to bootstrap portfolio templates. Next, have candidates write articles about CICD, source control, design patterns they are learning, or about some of the other keywords that you often see in resumes. Back in March, I went on an interview with a CEO of a company that I came across. After reading some of my articles and having a talk with him, he was kind enough to let me know that he had written this post with our interview in mind:

Alt Text

Encouraging your network of future candidates to write articles on their areas of expertise makes it easier for employers to quickly identify competence in the candidate's skillset. Have them publish their articles either here on dev.to or on a personal blog site they create. Also have them link their articles and projects on their resume aswell.

When you and the candidate are in the process of setting up an interview with a hiring manager, make sure you notify the candidate to have a pen and paper. If the interviewer asks a question in which they don't know the answer, they must write it down. On top of the questions they don’t know, tell them to jot down some of the questions that they do know but were a little bit harder to articulate. Call the candidate 20 minutes after the interview, ask them how it went, and have them look up the answers to the questions they failed to answer properly. Once they’ve researched the answer, ask them to email the answer to you, and subsequently, email the answer to the interviewer as soon as possible. Now, instead of giving a soft no, the interviewer may reconsider giving the candidate a second look, and you’ve just learned one of the questions that will be asked to candidates on the next round of interviews.

Below is an example of how I've linked my projects and articles onto my resume:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1yR0VR0YP9vgsdqeRXfeKod4FiwiYE3_J/view

Discussion (3)

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murphymurph21 profile image
John Murphy

Thanks man this is great!!! You could literally get a job training recruiters with this info, if that's a thing. Awesome article, keep up the great work and God bless!

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Zachary Hadjah Author

Hey man, thanks for the kind words! I always have my eyes set on the future. Ten to fifteen years from now when I have enough experience, I'd love to be in an upper management position involved in recruiting and training other juniors developers!

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John Murphy

Awesome man hope it works out for you!!! You definitely looking into the future for sure :)