When you decide to recruit a new member of your team – whether it’s a new post or replacing someone who is leaving – you want to get the best available.
There are people who say ‘Recruit for attitude, teach the skills’ – and, of course attitude is really important, but when you’re recruiting for technical vacancies skills are critical. Finding the right skill set, at the right level – and the right attitude to fit into your working environment comfortably is a challenge for any recruiter.
So where do you start to look?
Job boards: In today’s internet world candidates find it really easy to put their details onto the rapidly increasing number of job boards. In fact, some candidates appear on several of these.
The downside is that, as an employer, you need to subscribe to their services (that’s how they make their money) – so how do you know which job board to look at? The other challenge is that searching job boards is time consuming and eats up days of someone’s time to keep up with the rapidly changing range of candidates available.
Advertising: A good press ad should attract the right candidate. Unfortunately, press ads tend to attract lots of ‘wrong’ candidates too; the people who think they can ‘wing it’ and that a one hour session on any programming language, carried out 3 years ago is enough to get them an interview.
If you decide to go down this route be prepared to sift through a mountain of CVs!
Recruitment agencies: Giving a brief to one or more agencies should remove some of the time consuming work as they’ll do the job board scanning (and be subscribed to quite a few as part of their business strategy)and any press advertising. However, there’s no guarantee that they’ll be able to spot a candidate who is ‘blagging’ their way into an interview.
The challenge is that, if you’re briefing traditional agencies for a technical vacancy it’s unlikely that they’ll have any means of assessing any candidates’ skills level.
Word of mouth: It’s very powerful to spread the word through your network and, providing they’re in the right circles, can get you really good candidates. The problem is that it’s a bit hit-or-miss – unless you already know exactly who you want (but then you wouldn’t be reading this would you?!) It depends on whether your network tell the right people in the right places – and whether their connections will plug you into really good candidates.
If you’re looking for a very specific set of skills it’s quite likely that the ideal candidate is already in work. That means that their CV won’t be listed on job boards or with agencies and they’re unlikely to be reading the Wanted ads. The only way you’ll find these people is by using an agency who is clued into who is working where and who might be interested if the right role came up.
In other words a full-service agency who will find, interview and test all technical candidates before submitting them for interview. I wonder where you might find one of those … !
(Try 020 3762 2020 for a good starting place!)