There had to be a better way.
A company that acts only in the best interests of job hunters and employers.
A company that supports all parties to ensure the very best match between individual aspirations and employer’s needs.
An extraordinary company that is a delight to work with
Java Software Engineer Permanent / Cwmbran, Torfaen
Java Software Engineer - Cwmbran - Java 7 / Java EE - £Generous salary! A brand new and rare opportunity for a skilled Java Software Engineer has arisen to join a successful and growing company in South Wales. A generous starting salary and benefits package is offered. Our client is a specialist developer of consumer facing technology solutions and has a global client base. Due to continued success and need for expansion they are now seeking more Software Engineers with strong skills in modern Java to join their impressive team. This person will be given the responsibility of building scalable, high-performance applications whilst being given the opportunity to learn emerging technologies and champion best practice. You will have excellent skills in Java and be familiar with Java 7 and Java EE 6. You must have experience with either Oracle DB or a NoSQL database such as Mongo, Cassandra or Neo4J, coupled with strong understanding of RESTful services. Any additional experience with server-side tech such as JSF, JCA or JPA would be desirable but not essential. As would use of Spring Boot, Apache Camel or BDD/TDD agile knowledge. This is a fantastic opportunity for a skilled individual to join an excellent software development team working on the latest technology. A generous starting salary is offered plus benefits such as up to 10% bonus, flexi time, a 25 day holiday allowance that will increase with service, life assurance, 3% employee 6% employer initial pension package and private health care. For more information and an immediate telephone interview send your CV today. Novate IT Ltd is a leading supplier of permanent and contract recruitment services for companies in the IT, Digital Media and Telecommunications industries.
Technical Project Manager - software engineering, Agile, Jira Permanent / Bristol, England
Technical Project Manager - software engineering, Agile, Jira - Bristol A brand new opportunity for you to join a leading international software development specialist as they embark on a sustained period of expansion. This role offers a starting salary of £40,000 - £50,000 + bonus + benefits. This employer are well established in Bristol and have offices around the globe. They are the market leader in their sector and a well respected name recognised by most people in the IT industry. Their Bristol research and development office is expanding in a number of areas and they are now seeking an experienced Technical Project Manager or Software Engineering Project Manager to guide complex projects to be delivered on time and to budget. You should have a background in software engineering, ideally having progressed from a hands-on development role to technical project management. You are likely to have worked in a low level software engineering environment such as networking, telecoms, or embedded software and should also have experience of working within an Agile environment and also using Jira. Any experience of working in a continuous integration and test environment would also be beneficial but this is not essential. This role represents a great career move for you if you are an experienced software engineering Project Manager looking to move to a successful, well respected and expanding organisation in which their contribution will be noticed. For more details and an immediate telephone interview please apply today. NB: This employer's offices are very close to Bristol Temple Meads and so are easily commuteable from Bath, Chippenham, Swindon, Newport, Cardiff, Gloucester, Cheltenham and Exeter. Novate IT Ltd is a leading supplier of permanent and contract recruitment services for companies in the IT, Digital Media and Telecommunications industries.
Recruitment Consultant / Trainee Recruitment Consultant Permanent / Nottingham, Nottinghamshire
Recruitment Consultant / Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Central Nottingham - Information Technology and Digital Media sectors - UK and Europe. Basic of £16,000 to £25,000 + commission. Novate IT is a recruitment consultancy unlike any other you will have encountered before. Our focus is on providing the very highest level of service to our candidates and clients alike, this means we're not interested in setting our consultants call number targets nor incentivising them to send out speculative CVs to clients who haven't requested them. Instead we spend each working day establishing long term partnerships with our clients and providing them with low volumes of highly suitable applicants who have all been fully briefed on their roles. This simple approach has proven extremely popular and so employers now seek us out to assist them, cold calling is therefore rarely needed. As a well-established, true recruitment 'consultancy' we have an enviable reputation with a wide range of employers in the UK, and Europe and can boast many high profile, household name companies as repeat clients. Due to a sustained period of growth in our client base as well as our regular customers becoming more active, we have now established our Nottingham office and are seeking an additional consultant to join the team. This role will involve working closely with our clients to define job specifications and then engage with suitable candidates through a variety of mediums. You will work closely with both applicants and clients to ensure that both parties are being represented professionally and that ultimately we help the employer find the best person for the job and the candidate the best job for them. We are not a sales focused agency so our focus is more on finding the best match for all parties. As a fully-fledged consultant you will also be tasked with discovering and developing business opportunities with new customers, demonstrating the difference in the level of service we offer and establishing long-term recruitment partnerships. We are able to consider applicants at all levels of experience; from those looking to commence a career in the recruitment industry through to experienced recruiters seeking a new challenge with greater prospects and autonomy. All applicants must be educated to degree level (or equivalent) and be able to demonstrate experience of working in a customer-service role (either face-to-face or telephone based). Applicants must possess good analytical skills as they will be required to understand complex job descriptions and technical CVs and make prompt assessments of applicant's strengths, weaknesses and suitability for vacancies. As we are an independent company, we are able to be flexible in terms of salary and bonus structures and, within reason; we will pay what it takes to secure the best person for us. We are looking for a highly self-motivated person to help us continue to give a recruitment service that is second to none. If this advert has struck a chord with you and you feel that you can offer the commitment, hard work and experience we are looking for, whatever your level of recruitment experience, please feel free to send us your CV, or contact me via LinkedIn to arrange an initial informal discussion. Novate IT Ltd is a leading supplier of permanent and contract recruitment services for companies in the IT, Digital Media and Telecommunications industries.
Senior DevOps Engineer - Berlin - GCP / AWS Permanent / Berlin, Germany
Senior DevOps Engineer - Berlin - GCP / AWS An exciting opportunity to join a successful software company in central Berlin, offering €65,000 - €72,000 plus additional training and coaching budget and flexible working hours. You will be helping with the setup and management of a complex cloud infrastructure currently based on Google Cloud Platform and some AWS while advising on the overall design of new platform features. The company developed a search platform that allows millions of people across the world to access huge amounts of data instantly. Heading from strength to strength means their main development hub in Berlin is now looking to recruit Senior DevOps Engineers to help build out their cloud platform. You will be a deciding factor on how to design and build their cloud infrastructure so it's an excellent opportunity for someone looking to make an immediate impact when they join. Experience with GCP and the full AWS family of technologies is a must alongside deep Linux, Kubernetes, Terraform, Docker, SQL and NoSQL databases (Cassandra, RedShift, MySQL, CouchBase). The platform currently has 500+ microservices so experience of working at a similar scale is desirable. You will be interacting with a lot of the engineering team so strong English language communication skills are needed. A passion for continuous integration, deployment and automation is also very beneficial. If you're looking to join a company where you will have an immediate impact on their platform and be in a position to advise and direct their DevOps culture then send in your CV today! Novate IT Ltd is a leading supplier of permanent and contract recruitment services for companies in the IT, Digital Media and Telecommunications industries.
Technical Writer Permanent / Cwmbran, Torfaen
Salesforce Developer - Berlin Permanent / Berlin, Germany
Frontend Developer - Angular JS - Berlin Contract / Berlin, Germany
Frontend Developer - Angular JS - Berlin Permanent / Berlin, Germany
Senior Software Engineer - Go, Scala, PHP - Berlin Permanent / Berlin, Germany
Senior Software Engineer - Go, Scala, PHP - Berlin A highly successful company in Berlin is seeking experienced Senior Software Engineers to assist in the development of highly scalable web applications used by high profile international companies. Offering €50,000 - €65,000 depending on level of experience as well as potential for some remote work, flexible working hours and working with the latest technologies. The company helps high profile clients develop hugely popular digital campaigns focusing on a creative flair often not seen in the market! Going from strength to strength they are looking to hire experienced Senior Software Engineers with either Go, Scala or PHP experience to come on board and assist in new launches. The role will see you building a variety of APIs targeting tracking and analysis of digital campaigns as well as working closely with DevOps to ensure applications are highly scalable. You will also be mentoring younger engineers and be involved with highlighting new technologies that could be implemented in future projects. The successful candidate will have a wealth of development experience with either Go, Scala or PHP and a deep understanding of SQL and NoSQL databases. Experience in AWS, Linux, Jenkins and building RESTful APIs is essential. A solid understanding of BigData pipelines is useful as well as a bare mental infrastructure. Any additional experience working in a DevOps environment or working closely with DevOps Engineers is hugely beneficial. If you fit the above profile and are looking to join a fun, innovative and forward thinking company based in the heart of Berlin send in your CV for an immediate telephone interview. Novate IT Ltd is a leading supplier of permanent and contract recruitment services for companies in the IT, Digital Media and Telecommunications industries.
Level 2 Support Engineer - Berlin - German & English - IPTV Permanent / Berlin, Germany
Level 2 Support Engineer - Berlin - German & English speaking - TV, Live Streaming A brand new opportunity for a German and English speaking Support Engineer to join an established and quickly expanding software company in Berlin. The position can offer between €40,000 - €50,000 + benefits such as a relaxed work atmosphere, excellent office space, regular team events and 25% uplift for night shifts. With regular growth and even more recent success with their new products targeting the live streaming space this company are looking to hire a Level 2 Support Engineer to help with 24/7 coverage of their network. This will see you based in their Operations Centre in Berlin working alongside the technical support team ensuring tickets are answered promptly and effectively. The right candidate will have experience in working in a shift rotation pattern covering a 24/7 level 2 support role. Excellent German and English language skills are essential as well as some Linux and Networking skills. You will be monitoring several different systems covering IPTV and TV broadcasting while simultaneously checking graphs and readouts to ensure the networks and products are delivering an effective output. A CCNA qualification is hugely beneficial. If you are looking to join an innovative established company with excellent benefits apply today! Novate IT Ltd is a leading supplier of permanent and contract recruitment services for companies in the IT, Digital Media and Telecommunications industries.
I've found Novate IT to be highly professional - they've always focused on quality over quantity which has been a great help because I always know that CV's from Novate IT are a good match for my requirements. After dealing with several different recruitment firms, I've settled with Novate IT because I know they act with integrity and honesty.
Ben Howes (CEO) / Zoetrope Labs
Burned by previous bad experiences of agencies who didn't take due care and attention when sending though potential candidates, we had long stopped using recruitment agencies. It was costing too much time and money and becoming more of a hassle then it was worth. That was until we met Novate IT. their dedicated Consultant not only took the time to fully understand us as a company - including our needs, our future goals and our working practices - but he also advised on how we could tailor our job role to better attract the right candidates. Through their hard work, we were sent a multitude of high-quality candidates, without having to lift a finger. We quickly filled the role, and this particular developer has since become an integral part of the company; building his way up through the ranks. We are now in the process of filling more positions with Novate IT after such a positive experience.
James Ewin (Creative Director) / Only Orca Limited
GDPR for Employers: An Opportunity
GDPR - for Employers: An Opportunity Pretty much every company across Europe is presently preparing for the arrival of the new General Data Protection Regulations on 25th May 2018, and whilst it’s easy to become frustrated with the added layers of policies, procedures and documentation required to comply, GDPR should be seen as a huge opportunity for employers and recruiters to get their respective houses in order. Anecdotally we hear from many of our clients that they have a recruiter or two on their supplier lists who seem to have a habit of submitting CVs of candidates they’ve never spoken to and yet their actions are at times ignored. Come 25th May this will not only be bad practice it could potentially be unlawful and could land your company in seriously hot water (unless of course you’ve been tasked with disposing of 20million Euros as part of your job). The purpose of this article is not to give you chapter and verse about GDPR but instead to explain what you as an employer should be looking for from your recruitment suppliers. So, here are the headlines; there are six legal bases for processing personal data, only three are relevant to general recruitment activities and of those most recruitment consultancies will try to rely on the wonderfully vague basis of “Legitimate Interests”. In simple terms “Legitimate Interests” allows a recruitment company to hold personal data of an individual as it is necessary for them to provide work finding services for that individual. And that is fine as long as the recruitment company doesn’t hang on to the personal data longer than is necessary and doesn’t choose to share it with a third party. However, if you are working for an employer and are receiving CVs from a recruiter you’re going to want some sort of assurances that they actually have the right to share the applicant’s personal data with you. So, as an employer you really need to be looking for confirmation that any CVs you receive are from candidates who have given their consent for the Recruiter to send them. “Consent” is the best legal basis for processing of personal data as it is then completely clear that the individual knows that the recruiter is working on their behalf, has given their approval to the recruiter’s actions and crucially has a mechanism available to them for withdrawing their consent when they are no longer looking for work. Now, let me just pause to clarify; “Legitimate Interests” might be a lawful basis for a recruitment consultancy to have sent you a CV but “Consent” definitely is. More succinctly put, using “Legitimate Interests” is doing the bare minimum, “Consent” is best practice. So, as an employer, why should you care about the basis being used by your recruitment suppliers? Here’s just a few reasons why: If it’s under “Legitimate Interests”: How do you know that the Recruiter sending you the CV has gained the personal data in a lawful manner? If they haven’t then you haven’t either. How do you know the candidate has seen the recruiter’s privacy statement and policy? How do you know the candidate even knows their personal data has been shared with you? Do you want to give a place on your PSL to a Recruiter who is only prepared to do the bare minimum to achieve their placement fee? ….on the other hand, if it’s under “Consent”: You know that the Recruiter sending you the CV has gained the applicant’s personal data in a lawful manner and, The candidate has seen the recruiter’s privacy statement and policy and, The candidate knows their personal data has been shared with you and, You are working with a Recruiter who strives for best practice and so is willing to earn their placement fee by doing a good job for all parties. So employers, GDPR is a great opportunity for you to review your PSL and ensure that you are getting the best standard of service. By insisting all your suppliers gain the full GDPR “Consent” required from candidates you will see many improvements in the service you receive from your PSL, including: Fewer duplicate applications, where two or more recruiters claim the right to represent a candidate. And on the rare occasions where they have both/all gained the candidate’s consent they will have that moment time and date stamped which they can share with you. More committed applicants; at present it is very easy for a candidate to just say yes to every recruiter that calls them, and only whittle down their options once the interview requests start rolling in, this wastes your time. By insisting they consent to working with the recruiter and applying for your role, your CV received to interview attended ratio will increase. And so yes, seeing as you are bound to ask I can confirm here as I will if you choose to engage with us as a supplier; every candidate you receive from Novate IT and 52 Degrees North will have given their full consent for us to hold and share their personal data with you. In truth we’ve being doing this since both companies started and so are now delighted to see it being enshrined in law and our competitors forced to catch up. So, employers here’s your challenge; review your PSL now and ask all your suppliers what their plans are for complying with GDPR? Will they be doing the bare minimum and putting you at risk with “Legitimate Interests” or are they actually committed to best practice and providing you with a lawful source of candidates who know what is happening with their data and have given “Consent” to an application with your company? Remember, you’re paying for a service so why not insist on getting one? Stewart Smith – Self-professed recruitment expert and Bristol’s least hated IT recruiter. - If you’d like some help understanding what GDPR means to you as an employer or redesigning your recruitment process or just getting to the bottom of where all the talented employees you need to hire are, email me - Stewart@novate-it.co.uk
The Mysterious Tale of the Incredible Vanishing Candidate
The Mysterious Tale of the Incredible Vanishing Candidate Here’s a story I’d wager all Recruiters are familiar with and despite its toxicity for all parties involved it is still a regular occurrence - I’m working on a vacancy for one of our clients and I find the perfect candidate; they have the right skills, are at the correct point in their career, are located close to the employer’s offices and when briefed are really keen on the role. We agree to present the applicant forward for the role and to get back to them with feedback ASAP. Now the next stage of our story can be fluid from case to case as sometimes it happens before a telephone interview has taken place, on other occasions it has happened mid-interview process (call from client “why hasn’t so-and-so arrived for their interview?”) and on one occasion it has happened to me after the candidate has completed the full three stage (telephone interview>technical test>office interview) process and is actually being offered the job!! Whenever it happens isn’t the point, the incident is the same - the candidate vanishes into thin air. Previously receptive to emails, text messages or phone calls all of a sudden they go completely silent, off grid, absent, disappear. Vanish. So, what on earth is going on? Well, the cynics amongst us know that some of these early-stage vanishers could be other Recruiters who have ghosted a CV (either created a fake CV or used a real CV but just changed a few of the key details and name) in order to find out from us who our client is. Once they have that info they need no longer engage with us and so don’t answer our calls (as an aside this happened to me once and the Recruiter in question had been dumb enough to leave some details within the CV so I could trace him to his employer, a company I was friendly with….I knew his boss…..hilarious!). But this would still only explain a small portion of the vanishers so it’s safe to say that something odd is going on with genuine candidates out there. Perhaps they are being kidnapped by other Recruiters or job applicants? Maybe its aliens, they do love to abduct folk after all! Maybe it’s an injury, or illness or even death (I’m sure this must actually happen sometimes sadly) – job hunting is a perilous task after all. The reality is some candidates just decide to vanish, I’m guessing they’ve either found a new role or decided to stay put with their present employer or, perhaps have decided on reflection that the role they’ve applied for isn’t quite what they’re after. Let’s be clear, all of these are perfectly acceptable reasons for withdrawing from the recruitment process, but what is completely unacceptable and a frankly ridiculous thing to do is to vanish into thin air without telling the recruiter of their change in plans. Let’s pause for a moment and address the elephant in the room; the services of a recruitment consultancy are completely free of charge to an applicant and in theory that’s an amazing deal. Seriously, you give someone who knows your industry and location your CV and then they set about presenting you with a load of suitable jobs, they submit the applications to the jobs you choose to go forward for, they help you prepare for the interview and negotiate the best remuneration package available for you at the end of the process, what could be a better deal than that? Or maybe you’d prefer to spend your evenings scouring through job adverts online and in newspapers? So, to completely vanish on them when you know they are trying to work their bum off for you is nothing less than bloody rude. Now obviously we all know Recruiters aren’t doing this entirely for the love of helping people find jobs, someone is paying us but when it isn’t you I personally think you have a bit of a responsibility to play with a straight bat and not simply vanish. Certainly, vanishing can be extremely harmful to the recruiter’s relationship with their client, as it makes us look like we had never spoken to you in the first place. Ok, so whilst we’re dealing with elephants let’s also be honest and deal with that one’s younger, only slightly smaller brother; some recruiters are idiots. Some Recruiters send your CV places without asking you, some Recruiters repeatedly call you about jobs focused on a skill or technology you used once 10 years ago but that still lingers on your CV, some Recruiters won’t take no for an answer when you decide a job isn’t quite right for you. I’m certain there are many many more sins that some Recruiters are guilty of, I’m just not aware of them because at Novate IT and 52 Degrees North we don’t do things that way (- yeah I know, I would say that, but I’m happy for you to ask ANY of the clients or candidates we’ve worked with over the last 20 years). The point here is that (and I firmly believe this) most Recruiters are not like this, many/most work hard to do a good, honest and reasonable job by their candidates (so they can get paid by their clients). So, with these points in mind it’s just not a reasonable act to vanish when they are trying to help you achieve your goals. So, why should a Vanisher give a damn? They’ve presumably disappeared because they achieved whatever objective they set out to - they’ve got a new job elsewhere, or a raise from their present employer etc. so why should they care? Well here’s just a few reasons: 1. They will almost certainly want to change job again at some point in the future and may just find that their ideal next career move is being hired for by the recruiter they’ve previously vanished on. Will they be perceived as a credible candidate given their track record? 2. Remember, the employer also knows the Vanisher’s name too, and is likely to be frustrated at their actions and their time being wasted engaging with someone who disappeared into the ether. Even if the Vanisher re-appears as a direct applicant or through another recruiter at best they can look forward to a red-face conversation in the interview or at worst their application will be dismissed as more potential time wasted. 3. Related to point 2, the hiring manager could turn up next working anywhere. Again, imagine being ruled out of your dream job at Google/Facebook/Debenhams/Notts County (You Pies!!!) because you’d previously messed the hiring manager around. You’d be gutted, right? 4. We recruiters never quite believe someone has vanished on us (we’re eternal optimists) and so it’s likely you’ll be getting emails, texts, phone calls and voicemails at the very least daily for a while as we try to reach you. Seriously, who can deal with the agro of constantly avoiding phone calls etc?!? (I appreciate this isn’t exactly a major job hunting issue but still something to keep in mind – I know a recruiter at another company who will call a Vanisher 20+ times per day until he gets an answer! Ouch.) The answer to avoiding all this silliness is simply to communicate; be willing to call the recruiter you’ve been working with and tell them the bad news. If they’re a good egg they take it on the chin, probably congratulate you and send you on your way with their best wishes. And if they throw a strop? - then you’ll definitely know who to avoid dealing with next time around. If on the other hand you simply don’t have the time/will/energy/inclination to listen to them trying to change your mind and to continue with their application then just email them; a couple of sentences explaining that you’ve made your decision and why is sufficient. They might still be a bit miffed but they’ll still be happier to have been told than if you had simply evaporated. Stewart Smith – Self-professed recruitment expert and Bristol’s least hated IT recruiter. - If you’d like some help with your CV, job hunt or any other career development matter email me email@example.com
Five (possible) problems with your CV
The problem with CVs….. My last few blog posts have focused on how employers can improve their hiring success but this week it’s time to turn attention to applicants and to look at the mistakes being made with the main method of presenting one’s self forward for a job; the CV (or resumé – but for the purpose of this article CV will do). Now as Recruitment Consultants we spend 99% of our waking hours reviewing CVs (or it certainly feels that way) and so whilst many accusations can be levelled at recruiters one thing we can say for certain is that we know what a good CV looks like. We may not be experts in software engineering, accountancy, ice-cream construction or whatever business sector we happen to be recruiting in (we don’t need to be……another time) but we are experts in how someone’s career history should be described within a CV. So, as I close in on my third decade as a Recruiter let me share the following nuggets of wisdom gleaned from my career so far: 1 - The one-page CV is a myth Whoever invented this idea either had a VERY limited career when they thought of it or they had amazing eyesight and loved reading documents in font size six. In short; KNOCK IT OFF! (- yes, I am shouting, it really gets my goat!). In reality, unless you’re fresh out of school or university then you are almost certain to have done enough “things” professionally to warrant at least a couple of sheets of A4. Referring to my specialist sector of software engineering the complexity of the projects our candidates work on necessitates reasonably detailed description and in 20 years I can’t say I’ve ever heard a hiring manager complain about a CV that even stretches to four or five pages. That’s not to say CVs should be padded with pointless info to create length for length’s sake, just don’t be shy of giving a bit of detail. 2 - ….but what did you actually do??? This sort of follows from my previous point; we see FAR too many CVs that are brief to the point where I wonder if the author was running out of printer toner. An example from yesterday; an applicant for a job described their last 10 years’ work in just two and a half lines the crux of which was roughly “various projects including web software for XX industry” - this will not get them hired ANYWHERE. Employers want to know about the projects, the teams the individual worked in, the technology used, the client/s (if there was one), the industry and so on and so on. Without more detail you’re just encouraging the recruiter or hiring manager to reach for the delete key. 3 - Lay off the damn graphics! Yes, UX/UI people….I’m looking at you (although many others are guilty of this crime too). Let’s be really clear about this, a CV should only be a typewritten document explaining your skills, career experience, qualifications and contact details (plus some interests….but we’ll get to that shortly) - a CV is not the place for you to demonstrate your design fu. No one really wants to see (and these are all things I’ve seen within the last month) your finger prints, you in Venn diagram form, you as physically compared to various animals found on a safari, a bar chart where you rate all your skills out of seven…and they are all seven out of seven! I get that this is eye catching but it’s also just a bit odd and wastes space where you could be writing about your actual skills and experience. Hello again UX/UI peeps, yes…clearly you need to be able to show your skills somewhere but that’s what your portfolio is for, put the link front and centre on your CV (literally, under your name) and hiring managers will always see it and visit it. You’ll also be showing you know when, where and how to convey information, which has got to be a skills in and of itself, right? 4 - Are you a human with a life or do you only exist to work? This is something that many other people have commented on but can’t really be overstated, and I accept that it’s perhaps cultural thing but certainly in the UK it’s REALLY important to have some outside work interests listed in your CV. You never know, your interviewer might also be an amateur beekeeper, a follower of Notts County (You Pies!!!) or a fan of film noir. Interests can help you get an interview (one of my team secured their interview at Novate IT by showing their love of Lord of the Rings) and can also provide a great conversation starter to ease you into the interview helping you build the rapport that is crucial in any job interview. In the software engineering world employers are now becoming increasingly interested in the technical projects applicants take on in their spare-time; you might not have professional experience of Clojure but taking the time to develop a project or two using it as a hobby sends a powerful message to a prospective employer that you’re committed to that area of technology as well as self-development in general. 5 - Word vs PDF This is a pretty simple one really; Word is good (alright…Word is OK-ish) at creating/editing word-processed documents, and PDF is good at presenting them as you intend them to look. So, by all means provide us with your CV in PDF format but please accept that if you’re using the services of a Recruitment Consultant we almost always have to do something to it before we can send it to the employer, which means converting it back into Word, doing what we need to do and then returning it to PDF. So PLEASE, if only for my sake and my diminishing volume of follicles please also have a Word version ready you can share with us. And don’t fret, we’re not trying to do anything sinister we simply need the ability to add a coversheet summarising the main points of your skillset and desired role (and pretty much every client I have worked with over the last 20 years has asked us to do this). We may even need to tidy up the formatting that your chosen job board has decided to sporadically tamper with (unless you meant every other paragraph to be justified to the right of the page?!?!) or we might need to correct your spelling or grammar (perish the thought you’ve missed this during your proof reading, or your computer thinks you are American and autocorrects you into working for an organization). Seriously, only providing a PDF CV means your recruiter is having to spend so much longer processing your application that they don’t have time to help other job hunters, so you’re basically standing in the way of other people getting jobs, and no one wants that on their conscience! There are a multitude of other issues with CVs and I could easily vent on this subject all day, but this is supposed to be a blog post and not an encyclopaedia so I’ll leave it with one final message; if you’re working with a recruiter then listen to their advice about your CV, you might be an expert in glass-blowing, civil aviation or marsupial dentistry but we are experts in making CVs convey the right info in the loveliest way possible. And even if you don’t particularly trust the Recruitment Consultant you are working with (implausible as it may sound, there are bad Recruiters out there) believe in their desire to help you get the job you are applying for! Stewart Smith – Self-professed recruitment expert and Bristol’s least hated IT recruiter. - If you’d like some help with your CV, job hunt or any other career development matter email me firstname.lastname@example.org
(Most) Telephone Interviews are Pointless
(Most) Telephone Interviews are Pointless. These days the recruitment process for most software engineering jobs tends to look something like: CV review Telephone interview Remote coding exercise (don’t get me started!) Onsite interview And whilst that could in theory be quite a quick process (you could do all of that in a week, right?) in reality there’s a lot of feet-dragging between the stages and so “time to hire” for most roles is much more likely to be 3-4 weeks. Having spent approaching 20 years recruiting Software Engineers and IT personnel of just about every shape and size it strikes me that time is being needlessly wasted here. There seems to be little reason why you can’t have a candidate onsite and interviewing in person within 7 – 10 days of first setting eyes on their CV. So what needs to go? Well the telephone interview for one thing. Most hiring managers these days are receiving CVs from another party, whether that be a trusted Recruitment Consultant or an Internal Talent Acquisition Consultant (my goodness I hate that job title – not the people or the role….just the title…another time) and so these people should have done your telephone interview for you already. Seriously, why on earth would you be working with a recruitment company who didn’t understand your role well enough to ensure they only shared suitable people with you. Worse still, if you have an internal recruiter and they’re getting the match wrong why are you employing/paying them?!?!? At Novate IT and 52° North we have found that very soon after we start working with a company ALL our candidates are passing the client’s telephone interview stage, and so if this is the case it really begs the question why bother having it? Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not claiming we are recruitment wizards capable of only finding perfect candidates, I’m just saying we’re doing the job you’re eventually going to be paying us for. Our job is to do the telephone interview and so save you time, doubling up on work we’ve already done is pointless. Now some companies do choose to do a technical telephone interview, I accept that is a bit different but why not let us do that for you too? Surely you can define 4 – 5 stop/go questions for your vacancy that we can ask to ensure you only get to read the CVs of people who are at the required level of skill? Ditching the telephone interview can feel like a daunting prospect for many clients, the perception being that it saves time interviewing in-person lots of unsuitable candidates. The reality however is as stated before, if it really isn’t being used as a filter and most people are passing it is actually wasting your time. Have a look at your “telephone interview to office interview” and “office interview to hire” ratios, times the difference by 30 – 60 minutes (however long your telephone interviews typically last) and that’s the amount of time you’re wasting by telephone interviewing candidates who have already been interviewed by your Recruitment Consultant or In-house recruiter. Obviously as a hiring manager you want to be protected from the risk of having to meet with lots of unsuitable candidates so what do you do? Well firstly ensure that the people that recruit for you REALLY know what you want, this involves preparing good/accurate job specs and providing specific feedback on every CV you receive. Then, once you have a well-established, successful relationship…….trust them - take a few of their candidates straight through to your second stage (ideally an onsite meeting, where you will test AND interview them). As well as not wasting time doing telephone interviews the benefits of this approach are manifold: You’ll get to meet the candidates before pretty much every other employer, thus getting them bought into your role / company / brand first. You’ll come across as an employer who is REALLY serious about hiring them, not just “having an informal chat” on the phone whilst the candidate is potentially distracted by something else. Your “time to hire” will be turbocharged, meaning you can make offers within the first 7 -10 days, which in turns mean your new employee will start work for you sooner. And if you find you’re interviewing hideously unsuitable people? Well, you need to either look at the source of your candidates; should you be looking at new suppliers/internal recruiters? or, do you need to improve the quality of the information you are providing them with. Don’t be afraid of changing all elements in your process as your ultimate goal should be to know that when you receive a CV it is going to be someone you want to meet, then you’re not reviewing a CV you’re just preparing for the interview. Stewart Smith – Self-professed recruitment expert and Bristol’s least hated IT recruiter. - If you’d like some help redesigning your recruitment process or just getting to the bottom of where all the talented employees you need to hire are email me email@example.com
Your Remote Coding Test is Killing Your Recruitment Campaign
Your Remote Coding Test is Killing Your Recruitment Campaign The remote coding exercise has become an intrinsic part of software engineering recruitment over the last few years and in theory it is a great way of gauging a candidate’s technical skills, to work out if you need bother interview them or not. In my position as a Director of a company who have supported hundreds of software professionals change jobs over the last 19 years I have seen all sorts of hiring trends come and go, I can tell you that in reality the remote coding exercise is hampering the recruitment efforts of many employers to the point where the losses outweigh the gains. You see, EVERYONE has a remote coding exercise these days – a skilled candidate coming to the job market can easily find themselves facing four or five tests/tasks/assessments/exercises within 24 hours of their job hunt starting. Sometimes these tests kick in after a telephone interview, so at least the applicant might be a little bit engaged with your company and opportunity, but ever frequently they are now coming up even before any interview at all. So then what? - the applicant is faced with not only spending most of their day in a job they’ve decided they no longer want to then come home and face 2 – 4 hours homework each evening! Seriously, think about it, it’s even worse than school. So what happens? - well invariably they tackle the first one or two or (if they’re super diligent and don’t have a great deal else to do) maybe three tests before the onsite interview requests start coming in and so the other tests get forgotten/ignored. It doesn’t matter to them that “the test was sent late because the hiring manager has been away” – or any other completely valid excuse, they have application fatigue and are now heading down the path of least resistance. Now, of course you do need some way of measuring the candidate’s technical ability – you can’t hire a Scala Developer just because they say they are really really good, so what do you do? It’s a blindingly simple answer really; get them onsite ASAP and test them at your offices. But this could get really time consuming I hear you cry, well not if you design your test appropriately and set the right applicant expectations (if you don’t pass the test first there’s no point wasting your time with an interview). How does this improve the success of your recruitment campaign? You’ll get the opportunity to meet ALL the job seekers who are suited to your role, not just those who aren’t too busy with real lives to do yours and some other company’s tests You’ll almost certainly be amongst the first companies to interview the applicant, so You’ll be able to get them bought into your brand and role more quickly, and They won’t dodge doing your test, because they’re sat there in your offices, and You’ll get a better sense for how they actually problem-solve in the workplace! By fast tracking them to an onsite interview you’ll be giving them a much better recruitment experience than most of your competition, and They’ll like you even more for not taking up their valuable spare time with homework. ….and crucially you’ll be one of, if not THE first company to put a job offer to the candidate. Now, assuming the rest of your recruitment message is on point then why would they bother wading through a further multitude of remote technical exercises when they are already holding a brilliant job offer? Remember the path of least resistance? Despite all advice still a surprising number of applicants simply accept the first job offer they receive, so why not let it be yours? This advice may sound counter-intuitive in our age of being constantly online and able to do so much from the comfort of our homes but in reality, a bit of old school hiring practice could really turbo-charge your hiring efforts and ensure YOU get to see and hire ALL the best candidates, not just the company who happens to send them their test first! Stewart Smith – Self-professed recruitment expert and Bristol’s least hated IT recruiter. - If you’d like some help redesigning your recruitment process or just getting to the bottom of where all the talented employees you need to hire are, email me firstname.lastname@example.org I’ve just done a LinkedIn training course and have been advised to create some useful content to share with my network, subsequently this is the first in a series of posts about how employers and candidates can improve their recruitment activities, securing the best employees and jobs. All feedback gratefully received, if you think I’m talking rot then please tell me!