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The 'IT Recruiter'

The 'IT Recruiter'

29 Nov 15:00 by James Walker

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Even amongst the much maligned field of recruitment, the “IT recruiter”, stands out as the target of particular denigration, and not without good reason.

We’ve all heard tales of the VMware specialist asked if they have any experience of virtualisation and the “BI stack recruiter” who provides SSAS when you want SSIS.

Why is it that this particular group so often fall below the professional standard?

Well, IT is often seen as the ‘quick win’ of recruitment. Everyone needs technology staff in our IoT connected world, and fresh out of university, these young guns must surely understand technology - right?

An analysis of LinkedIn profiles quickly highlights a pattern – IT recruiters don’t have much experience. Almost 70% have done the job for under two years, one in three are in their first year.

This leads to a few things: KPI chasing cold calls, pushy sales, scripted questions and a lack of understanding for what you do and what you need.

Whilst of course not every recruitment consultant new to the role will provide a poor service, there are some clear benefits to engaging with an experienced recruiter:

  • More effective use of your time
  • Improved candidate fit
  • Better portrayal of your vacancy, and company, to the market
Sitting in the above graph’s yellow 9% wedge, I’ve been in the game a while.

Starting out post-university in project implementation for a technology based outsourcing company, I gained hands on requirement gathering and system configuration experience.

Moving on, into the world of IT recruitment, my first vacancies were 1st and 2nd line engineers, progressing to developers, analysts and project managers, before moving into an executive search environment placing CIOs and transformation directors.

In that time, I’ve worked with organisations across banking, insurance, wealth management, consultancy, accountancy, local government and the NHS.

Recently joining BWD – a specialist FS agency which has supplied into financial services organisations from global banks to boutique advisories for over a decade – to head the Technology practice, has been a breath of fresh air.

A company with at once a great client list (PSLs with KPMG, Barclays, Zurich, BNY Mellon, Investec and Prudential to name but a few), and which – and this is different – also delivers on its values of “doing the right thing”, “humility”, “loyalty” and “growth is good”.

What’s often missing in the interaction with IT recruiters is high quality engagement, and this commitment to a value led approach.

I look to form lasting relationships with clients, and truly partner with organisations, often on a retained basis. If we work together, I’ll visit you and your offices, to gain understanding of the subtleties which will lead to a truly successful appointment – those elements which fall outside the broader strokes of a formal job spec.

Working on a sole basis allows delivery of a thorough end to end service, rather than the melee of agencies simply focused on being faster than the competition, throwing the first CVs found into your inbox. 

Having a single route to market keeps the quality of your message high, and removes the ‘spam’ of candidates called repeatedly by multiple agencies for the same post – something which does not inspire confidence in potential applicants.

Importantly it saves your time wasted on consultants hiding in the ‘white noise’ of a PSL, whose poor quality of delivery is masked in the volume of anonymous CVs.