It’s Official: Tech Pros Hate Recruiter Cold Calls the Most

Last week, we asked what annoyed you most about how recruiters reached out about jobs. An overwhelming number of you responded, and it’s official: tech pros hate cold calls.

Around 32 percent of respondents say recruiter cold calls are the worst thing about being recruited. Unfortunately, this is also a widely-used strategy for recruiters who want to get developers and engineers into their funnel quickly. The allure of a cold call is that, if you answer, the recruiter can quickly spin an introduction into a ‘first interview.’ With step one complete, they can move you along to step two in the process.

Video call invitations also irk tech pros: 26 percent say this is the worst way recruiters reach out, and we can’t argue with that one. Whether you’re at work or home, there’s almost never a time for an impromptu professional video conference, even if some recruiting firms really like a face-to-face chat right away.

Texting checked in third with 20 percent of the vote, and probably serves as a delineation point of sorts for these results. Calling, video calls, and texting are direct, intimate methods of interaction. We’d venture most respondents are just too introverted (and/or busy) to want to hop on a video chat or phone call with someone they don’t know and have never interacted with.

Other methods attracted somewhat less hate. Social media messages pulled in 16 percent of the vote. We’ve heard of (and experienced) recruiters using Twitter Direct Messaging as well as other forms of communication (such as Facebook Messenger and Snapchat) to reach out to potential hires. We know recruiters and hiring managers will sleuth your social presence, but shooting you a DM out of the blue can prove alarming for some tech pros. Nonetheless, a query on social media can easily be ignored, making it somewhat less-invasive than a phone call.

Emails, which may be the most normalized method for recruiters to reach out to tech pros, is also the least-hated; only six percent think this is the most obnoxious method for recruitment. Here, we should consider context; this six percent is probably more annoyed with the volume of tech recruitment emails, not the actual practice itself. We’re hard pressed to think of a less-invasive method of recruitment.

Recruiting tech pros is expensive. One study shows companies pay as much as $60,000 just to hire an engineer or developer. This factors in third-party recruiters, who cost a healthy premium over in-house recruiting. These recruiters are often paid (at least in part) on commission; the faster they fill roles, the more they make.

This is part of the reason ignoring some social norms is becoming common practice for recruiters. The more tech pros placed in front of hiring managers, the better the chances of a hire (and a fat recruiting paycheck). It’s not always hiring, either; some companies just want a recruiter to forward along a certain number of high-potential candidates for possible future use.

Knowing how the sausage is made is rarely pleasant, but it’s important to know why a recruiter uses the methods they do. Unfortunately, their shortcuts can become annoying if you’re barraged constantly with unsolicited texts, calls, and social-media messages.

4 Responses to “It’s Official: Tech Pros Hate Recruiter Cold Calls the Most”

  1. wageSlave

    There is a lot of static noise in the Tech Labor marked. Recruiters usually don’t make cold calls. They prefer to concentrate on making money. If you are getting cold calls after posting a resume it is almost guaranteed that they are data minors posing as recruiters not actual recruiters. A recruiter makes money by filling positions not creating lists and come with their own set of problems. One would assume that dice sells recruiting firms all the data and they wouldn’t need your resume. A data minor wants you to send them your resume so they can extract the data and sell it to anyone who will pay for it. To do that they need to own the data thus the request for you to send them an electronic copy of your resume which becomes their owned data.

    There are a lot of buyers downstream from marketing firms to recruiter firms to operations like Zip Recruiter. Some use your data for the purpose you intended, but most don’t care about your intentions or need to find work. They just want to own the data so they can sell it. Data minors are a scourge on the tech labor market. It doesn’t surprise me at all that all that data minors annoy tech professionals more than any other form of static noise in the labor market.

  2. The strangest thing is that recruiters sometimes call at your work phone number. Most likely an insider from the company where you work leaks the company phone directory. Probably he/she leaks it not by mistake, but sells the data to recruiters.

  3. The job boards where resumes are posted are being severely abused (Monster). My email is inundated daily by recruiters whose names I cannot pronounce. If they cared at all about hiring somebody, they would at least look at my resume; but, most of the positions I receive emails about, I am either not qualified or over-qualified. Rarely is there one that would grab my interest. Call them data miners if you like; but, “hacks with no experience” seems a better fit. I would never call any of them, so it is making the good guys get lost in the hay.