Recruiter Rant #1 - Dialing for Dollars, LinkedIn and Keywords

by Dave on Monday, December 09 2013 at 15:09 EST

Sorry it’s been awhile.

For the last year or two, I have been following the blog of Nick Corcodilos over at Ask the Headhunter where he talks about problems that arise in modern day recruiting. Recently, he has blogged about some of his issues with LinkedIn. And, I’ve had a nice confluence of events.

I received an email about 2 possible job leads on LinkedIn:


I love your experience! I am looking for someone just like you for two opportunities in (big city). They are both high profile start-ups funded by Fortune 500 companies HQ’d in (big city).
One is a perm job with great salary and 30-40% bonus and stock options. The second job gives you the choice of PERM/contact to hire/ or long term straight contract. Contact Rates are good and on contract you can work monday thru thursday in (big city) and remote friday; and if you want to go perm or convert, the salary, bonus and benefits rock for perm.

If you are interested in learning more or know of someone looking for their next challenge, please reach out to me.
We would be happy to pay a $1000 referral bonus if we place your referral!

A few interesting things to note: I did not have any profile views in the past several days/weeks. So, it begs the question, how did she love my profile? Also, she does not give any type of job it is.

I say sure. What’s the worst that can happen?

I then get an email:

Hey can you call me at xxx-yyy-zzzz? Also send your resume if possible so I can freely tell you all details. If you don’t have a resume you can call me anyway.Thanks you!

Again, if you would have done some research on me you would already have my resume as I’ve got it here on my “About Me” page and I linked to it from my LinkedIn profile. I try to keep a generic version of my latest resume online.

And so I give her a call to hear her pitch. I introduce myself and she seems surprised that she has a call and I introduce myself (a couple of times, cell phone connections and all). Then she looks for our correspondences, and asks if I am a Ruby on Rails developer (again, profile). I told her that I do not work professionally as a Ruby on Rails developer, but that I was slowly teaching myself Ruby on Rails. She said her clients were working for pros at Rails/Agile Development/TDD. I told her that if her clients insisted on professional experience, I probably wouldn’t be a good fit as I am just tinkering at this point – in hopes it will be useful at some point.

I then asked her how she found me. She said she just did a search on LinkedIn and I popped up and she was astounded that I just said I was teaching it to myself – which I state on my LinkedIn profile.

She didn’t look at my profile until we were on the phone, and then she endorsed me for several skills.

To come back around, I agree with Nick wholeheartedly agree that there is an over reliance on keyword searching in databases. In the exchange I had with this recruiter, she (and her agency) kinda looked silly that she did not even read any of my profile on LinkedIn, yet she contacted me anyways – probably was hoping that she could contact a number of people and get lucky that someone would happen to match what she wanted.

Lesson from this: Spamming random people on LinkedIn that match some criteria is not recruiting (or head hunting or whatever you want to call it). I have heard comments (online and in person from friends) that LinkedIn has largely become a spamming platform for recruiters.

Also, I would encourage recruiters to possibly show up at their local tech meet ups/trade meetings/User groups. I have heard it said that the meetings may be difficult to make since many are at night or on the weekends, but they are difficult for everyone to make. You would find that if you took an interest in people and what you’re recruiting for, that you would get a lot of respect from candidates and managers – and you may find a lot of passive lookers that aren’t in the normal places that you look. I would think you’d also have a leg up on your competition, since you’re not just another name in the inbox/voicemail. But, that’s just my humble opinion.


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