HR recruiters have a responsibility to keep up with trends, particularly in the ever-changing world of IT. Competition for talented people in this field continues to increase, and recruiters must have a solid recruiting approach to get the needed talent for their company. It’s also important for recruiters pick the most qualified candidates, not just applicants who have personal traits that conform to the recruiter’s.
Here are some of the biggest complaints we hear about internal HR recruiters:
- Their screening process doesn’t produce good results.
- They take too long to find a good candidate.
- There’s too much back and forth between HR and IT.
- HR decides that the candidate isn’t a good fit, despite meeting all IT’s criteria.
- The candidate is no longer available when you’re ready to conduct an interview.
You can take steps to work better and more effectively with your internal HR recruiter.
- Recruiters need to understand what makes your department unique. Many HR recruiters treat IT the same as any other department, which is usually the wrong approach. IT is different. Not everyone in IT needs to fit the corporate mold. Many highly technical people have little interest in participating in corporate events or getting into the corporate spirit (unless there’s free food). Explain this to your recruiter.
- You need to proactively and quickly look for candidates. Experienced IT professionals are sought after. You can’t sit back and wait for them to come to you. Your recruiter needs to search career databases and use social media and any industry contacts he or she has. It’s common that your own IT professionals (particularly contractors or former contractors) have a network of contacts they could reach out to, an avenue a good recruiter does not ignore.
- HR needs to understand what you’re looking for. As an IT professional yourself, it’s easy for you to use flexible criteria when looking for candidates. For example, if you’re looking for an intermediate Java developer with good front-end skills, you might end up hiring a senior Java developer with limited front-end experience, provided the senior Java developer is willing to do front-end work. This type of applicant would likely have no problem learning the job quickly. In addition, it’s sometimes more valuable to find candidates with industry-specific experience. Your HR recruiter should be aware of this.
- Discuss the details upfront with HR. Before you talk with the candidate, HR should determine the candidate’s availability, whether he or she is currently being pursued, what the salary expectation is and, most importantly, whether the candidate thinks he or she would accept a job offer if one were made.
- Carry out technical phone interviews for shortlisted candidates. In many cases, your technical leads are happy to test and score candidates based on a phone interview, which should take only 15 minutes. This process tells you whether the candidate is a good technical fit or not. You’ll find that many IT professionals understand technical concepts, but they may not have direct experience. The phone interview is a good way to determine that. In many cases, a phone interview makes the interview process somewhat of a formality.
Once your HR recruiter is aware of the unique aspects of hiring for the IT department, the hiring process should improve. Good luck.