With the demand for tech skill sets constantly on the rise, you’ve more than likely had your inbox and voicemail flooded with requests from various recruiters who promise you the moon. While some recruiters can offer an effective way to alleviate job-seeking headaches and progress your IT career, others will do more harm than good. To make sure you’ve got the best partner in your corner, look for these five signs of a great technical recruiter.
Have you ever had a recruiter send you a job posting without even asking one question about your background or professional goals? Sure, a recruiter can use your LinkedIn profile to make assumptions about what roles may be a fit for you, but without getting to know you a recruiter cannot be fully effective. 64% of recruiters say their top challenge is dealing with a talent shortage. Unfortunately, this causes some to prioritize quantity over quality, and that’s never what you want to see. A recruiter who takes the time to ask the right questions about your working style, job preferences, and personality is ideal. They should make you comfortable sharing information so that they can work based on facts, not on assumptions.
The best technical recruiters will put your long-term career first. Ask yourself, is a recruiter focusing solely on getting you into a role right now, or do they talk in terms of future positions? Do they know where you want to be in five, ten, or even twenty years from now? While no future is set in stone, your past roles most definitely are. Making a questionable short-term decision for a job right now could derail the career progress you’ve built up so far. The best recruiters find out where you want to be and make sure the role they recommend today is the one that can set you up for the roles you want down the line.
While this may not be the case when working with an internal recruiter who represents a single company, a recruiter from a staffing firm can behave like a career mentor. They should be able to give you tips and advice, and act as a resource for any job-related questions you may have. If it’s the day before an interview and you’re suddenly unsure about an aspect of the company or can’t find the directions that you swore were in a previous email, is your first thought that your recruiter will be able to help? It should be. A great technical recruiter serves as a resource that can even provide guidance on how to prepare for an interview and negotiate salary. If you feel this doesn’t describe your current recruiter, it’s time to find one who fits the bill.
It’s simple. Does your recruiter answer when you call? Do they return voicemails quickly, and reply to emails within 24 hours? And when you do hear from them, do they clear up any confusion you might have had before your interaction ends? The best recruiters communicate clearly and consistently through whatever medium a candidate prefers. 69% of recruiters say that communicating with talent over text message is increasing. If that’s how you like to be contacted, is it how your recruiter is reaching out? An excellent recruiter explains their process up front, and sets realistic expectations by refraining from making promises they can’t keep. You should never be left confused as to the next step or wondering when (or how) you’ll hear back from a recruiter.
World-class staffing firms employ recruiters who don’t disappear after they connect you with a job. A great technical recruiter will foster an ongoing relationship with you, checking in at regular intervals to make sure you’re happy in your role and that things are going to plan. They will help you line up the next gig, making sure no speedbumps slow down your growth as a tech professional. Only 66% of staffing firms rate themselves as good or excellent when it comes to nurturing placed candidates, and that’s not a promising margin. Find yourself a recruiter who prioritizes the relationship over the transaction, and your career will be better for it.
Your career isn’t just important; it’s your livelihood. A recruiter should take it as seriously as they take their own personal career by providing strong support. While your stellar skill set might be up to bat, landing your next role is a team effort. When you’re backed by the right coach in the form of a great technical recruiter, you can swing for the fences and turn your career into a home run.