Have you ever hoped there was a superhero on your talent acquisition team? A person who knows all the languages of the rapidly evolving tech world along with in-depth knowledge of your niche business sector? Someone who can interview candidates, make a killer technical job description, and work well with your hiring managers and human resources department?
Look no further, you're describing a technical recruiter.
It's true, they may seem like a mythological creature that you only hear about in folklore, but they’re the key to getting qualified candidates in the door for your technical positions.
In this article, you'll learn more about what the legendary technical recruiter is, the core skills they have, and how to find them so that you can hire them to your team.
What Is a Technical Recruiter?
A tech recruiter has all the best traits of a regular recruiter but with a couple of extra layers of technical knowledge. Often referred to as an IT recruiter, their main job is to source, assess, and hire candidates for highly technical positions.
The average salary for a technical recruiter in San Francisco is 29% above the national average at $59,365 according to Glassdoor. In New York City it's closer to $50,296.
While most corporate employers will prefer that technical recruiters have a bachelor's degree, it's not a formal requirement to be an excellent tech recruiter. In fact, a number of highly successful IT professionals may only have a high school diploma. Most recruiting firms will care more about metrics-based success and work experience over formal education.
Job openings for technical recruiter roles often outline these specific job requirements:
Develop Recruiting Strategy
The best technical recruiters will be up on hiring trends. With social media and online applications, recruiters are often flooded. The strategy lies in how to find the best, most qualified candidates from the heap to avoid spinning wheels and wasted energy.
Identify Appropriate Talent Sources for Technical Roles
In today's job market, your technical recruiter has to also be savvy with their social media in addition to more traditional ATS (applicant tracking systems). Tech talent moves quickly between roles, even the full time IT professionals will have projects lined up for months in advance. To keep up with top talent, they need to be experts at relationship building and maintain open communication at all times.
In addition to LinkedIn, it might mean that your technical recruiter is keeping tabs via Twitter and Facebook too.
Create Job Descriptions and Post to Relevant Job Boards
A well-written job description is critical. It often goes through many iterations before it gets posted to job boards. It's a collaborative effort between hiring managers, IT recruiters, and human resources. Technical knowledge comes in handy in this case where employers need to speak the language of the tech talent they are hoping to attract.
Another opportunity for tech recruiters to showcase their technical knowledge is in the job interview. Without a thorough understanding of the position, the interview has the potential to fall a little flat and disengage top talent. The recruiter should be a master at all these tips on how to conduct an expert interview.
Assess Talent for Technical Skills
When all seems well in the interview stage, the next step is to test candidates via pre-employment screening methods. It's such an important part of the hiring process that we wrote a whole blog about it.
Attend Relevant Information Technology Job Fairs and Recruiting Events
The employer brand and reputation are crucial when looking to attract top talent. Recruiters have become the frontline marketers for the company and that relationship can determine whether an IT professional will choose to partake in the recruitment process.
Core Skills Needed in a Technical Recruiter Job
A recent Indeed survey of over 1,000 hiring managers and recruiters reported 83% have found the tech talent shortage has "hurt their business through lost revenue, slower product development, market expansion, or increased employee tension and burnout."
It's no wonder job boards are chock full of technical recruiting openings. Companies need technical recruiters to bolster their technical teams.
Here are some of the skills on the checklist of every hiring manager for the ideal tech recruiter candidate:
Stellar written and verbal communication skills
Project management skills
Experience with CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tools and/or ATS
Problem solving ability
Critical thinking skills
How To Find Technical Recruiters
Technical recruiters are in high demand which can make hiring one feel like trying to find a needle in a haystack. Here are some ideas on how to attract the best of the best.
With a shortage of talent, it helps if your company has a great reputation among IT professionals. Having interesting work to do and a hot client list is bound to attract top talent. Knowing what developers care about and investing in employee engagement will help to keep that top talent. Make sure to tout the things that you're most proud of front and center on the careers page.
Improve Your Hiring Process
Providing a streamlined candidate experience is the best way to boost your brand. It's one of the things job seekers notice and talk about amongst themselves. It will also encourage your team to confidently make referrals to your talent acquisition team.
Here are a few tips to optimize your hiring process:
Provide a list of interviewers and their job titles in the confirmation email. This ensures there are no surprises and helps candidates feel prepared.
Be flexible with scheduling your in-person or Zoom interview. Accommodating candidates is an easy way to make them feel valued and supported within the company.
Ramp Up the Search With Automation
Using data to support your hiring process is guaranteed to enhance fit and expedite time-to-fill. An intelligent referencing tool like Searchlight helps to provide scientific, normalized results that help to predict top performers over time. It uses referencing data to predict key behaviors using automation, which shaves down the referencing process from an average of 4 hours to about 60 seconds per hire.
Top Tech Talent Is Hard to Come By
With the talent shortage in the tech community, it can feel like top talent is playing musical chairs.
It can certainly be discouraging but by improving your employee branding, optimizing your hiring process, and using supportive automation you can beat out the competition and lock in the best IT professionals.
Use Searchlight to help you to identify the top performers within your candidate pool. Start with a demo to see for yourself how the platform can benefit your talent acquisition team. By relying on key performance indicators and endorsements from former colleagues, it makes it easy to focus recruitment efforts on right-fit candidates.
Want to hire more high performers and increase retention?
Serchlight’s Talent Intelligence has got you covered