As tech recruiting evolved, so did a sort of folklore surrounding it. Through whispers and hushed tones across offices and internets, this mythology slowly became recognized as truth, despite any proof or shared experience.
Some recruiters started to accept this alternate reality, repeating what they had heard without further investigation. But the time has come to flip the script, for recruiters to resist and reject the lore we’ve been force-fed over the years. It is here and now, in the year 2019, that tech recruiters stand up and say, “No more!” Let the debunking begin.
Myth #1: If you build it, they will come.
In this instance, “it” is that cool corporate culture, relaxed office environment and enticing employer brand that’s sure to lure in any viable candidate, right? Wrong.
The reality: More often than not, the onus of tech recruiting falls to the recruiter, not the culture. But before you put the office ping-pong table into storage, let’s acknowledge that, while the perks matter, they aren’t enough to unleash a torrent of interested applicants. Prepare accordingly, and don’t put all your eggs in that “cool company” basket.
Myth #2: Silicon Valley or bust.
Shocking, I know. But coming to terms with the simple fact that location isn’t everything can do wonders for your productivity (and probably your psyche).
The reality: Sure, there’s a high concentration of capable technical talent in Silicon Valley, but that doesn’t mean you need to focus all your energy convincing engineers in San Jose to relocate to Sheboygan. You will probably lose that battle. Instead, look for tech communities and networks closer to home to expand your reach and improve your success rate. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to keep an eye on those up-and-coming tech hotbeds. They tend to crop up faster than you’d expect.
Myth #3: One and done.
Closing a req does not mean that the work is complete. Nope. You’re far from finished.
The reality: Tech recruiting is (and needs to be) an ongoing process. The second you manage to staff those technical roles fully, someone will inevitably jump ship. It’s the law of the universe. So before you get too comfortable, resting upon your tech recruiter laurels (as if those even exist), keep your forward momentum and focus on those top-of-funnel activities. Awareness and outreach are essential. Trust me; you’ll thank yourself later.
Myth #4: The purple squirrel exists.
It does not. Stop trying to make it happen.
The reality: Repeat after me: tech recruiters are not magicians. They cannot and should not pull rabbits (or purple squirrels) out of hats. Likewise, pursuing the “perfect” candidate is a surefire way to drive yourself nuts. Rather, set reasonable expectations with hiring managers and aim to match as many of their qualifications as humanly possible. Any more than that, and you could wind up sourcing for a single position well into old age.
Myth #5: Money doesn’t matter.
Put your money where your mouth is and start embracing the ever-important salary discussion.
The reality: Many clichés hold up; and in this case, that means money talks and time is money. Tech professionals know how valuable they are, and they expect you, the recruiter, to understand that. No one wants to wait around for months for your team to make a decision and an offer. Once you lock in on a particular candidate, stay vigilant in your communication and keep them informed whenever and wherever possible.
Myth #6: Training is irrelevant.
Unless, of course, you want your workforce and organization to evolve.
The reality: Remember the purple squirrel thing a couple of myths back? Even the most skilled, highly educated and super-experienced candidates will benefit from structured onboarding, continued training and opportunities for additional development. Tech pros care about expanding their skill sets. You can’t expect your employees to stay active and engaged without a little nurturing from time to time. If this is something you intend to offer, state it clearly in your early conversations and let candidates know you’re keen to support them further down the line.
Now that we’re clear on a few things, I think it’s important to reiterate: Yes, many factors go into tech recruiting. It’s a tough game to play; no one denies that. But fooling yourself into believing the fables and falsehoods will only impede progress, not promote it. It’s up to tech recruiters to forge a new narrative, one that accurately reflects the trials and tribulations of their daily work. In doing so, you’ll make recruiting easier for the generations to come, offering up a proper North Star to follow.
Ryan Leary helps create the processes, ideas and innovation that drive RecruitingDaily. He’s RecruitingDaily’s in-house expert for anything related to sourcing, tools or technology. A lead generation and brand buzz building machine, he has built superior funnel systems for some of the industry’s top HR Tech and Recruitment brands. He is a veteran of the online community and a partner at RecruitingDaily.