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Why won’t you call me?

Dear Reader,

I have exactly 1 friend who is an IT recruiter. Don’t get me wrong, I know a lot of them and even speak to most of them but in my entire circle of friends, only one of them is a recruiter, Scott “The Anti Pimp” Gordon. Scott isn’t like other recruiters, which is probably why we get along so well. He’s rude, brash, more than a little profane, most of all though, he understands how to talk to developers.

Recently Scott posted on his blog one of his usual rants, “I could care less what they say….“. The post itself, while interesting, does not really stand out among Scott’s posts; it’s good, not great. However, it seems to have set-off another recruiter who felt it necessary to comment on the post and even exchange emails with Scott about the subject matter. Scroll down after you have read the blog post and read the comments, paying special attention to the exchange between MattyMatt and Scott. Go ahead, read them, I’ll wait.

Ok, if you’ve read them then this blog post is about 2 things that come out of that conversation that exchange.

Why won’t you call me back?

“There’s no guarantee of a callback— and even if you get an interview(s), it does not mean you’ll receive the position.”, aka – I don’t like having to screen calls.—but it still means have to deal with some candidates who can’t take no for an answer.

One of the reasons I love Scott is that he does feel the pain of unemployed job seekers. I have been in that situation and while “Call Scott” was not the only thing on my job search to-do list, it was dang near the top. Scott always takes my call, even if he doesn’t have anything new to tell me. I can’t imaging anything more disheartening than either contacting a recruiter – or being contacted BY a recruiter – and then have days turn into weeks where you just don’t hear from them. Unless you know a Scott in your area, it is going to be trial and error but if you are actively job hunting and working with a recruiter is part of your strategy, make sure you get one that won’t screen you out because they can’t be bothered to spend a couple of minutes on the phone with you. If the answer is “no, you didn’t get the job”, make sure you have a recruiter who has the balls to tell you that, instead of just screening your calls and hoping you will go away.

The best recruiters use sniper rifles, not shotguns

Just recently, I had 30+ submittals for a Linux/Unix Administrator position

Whoa, back the bus up. Ok, now I am putting on my hiring manager hat. I have also sat on the other side of the table from Scott and had him pitch candidates to me. I can easily put a post on craigslist and get 30 candidates for a job. Heck, when I was at Jupiter Hosting in San Jose, every post to craigslist netted me between 100-150 resumes. If I am paying a recruiter, I want 2, maybe 3. I want him/her to sort through all of the resumes they have in their file, find the 2-3 that have the skills I want and seem to be a good fit for my team. Send me those. Otherwise, what the hell are you getting paid for?

Recruiters are not cheap, therefore, I expect them to actually work for their money. I expect them to have tech-screened the potential candidates for me, done reference checks and had at least one face-to-face before they get to me. That makes it worth the big bucks I pay. Gone are the days when the value of a recruiter was their database of resume’s. Those days ended back in ’95-’96. These days recruiters have to do the leg work for me, have to understand my needs, they have to provide me with the 2-3 candidates they think can do the job. In short, they have to provide value. (Hmmm…starting to sound familiar)

The point

The point of this rant is not to bolster Scott’s ego or to get you to use him. If you are in Nashville and either looking for a job or looking for candidate, yeah, call him, he’s the best in town. The point is that whether you are a job seeker or a candidate seeker, if you are going to use a recruiter, insist – no, demand – that they provide value for you. When they do, make sure and tell people; when they don’t, do the same. Life is too short to deal with asshats.

Until next time,
I <3 |<

Photo by Windell Oskay and is released under a Creative Commons license.

One thought on “Why won’t you call me?

  1. Scott is the very best. Hands down. I’ve never met someone with the personality he has that stands up for the people he represents. He’s about quality… not quantity. That makes him a cut above. I love the guy.

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