7 Things Recruiters Do that Irritate Me

Before getting into this post, I think I should state that there are recruiters I truly respect and like and recruiters that I do not respect and probably would not like even if I knew them. This post is about the later category, which I feel are the lazy recruiters who add no value to the candidate-employer relationship.

I got a call today from a recruiter who I would have loved to strangle, if it was only possible to do so over the phone. So here is my list of the top things that irritate me, which I am sure also irritate others. The first three come from my caller this morning, who I will affectionally call Mr. Lazy so i do not post his name here.

  1. Ringing my phone over and over again until I answer – This was the issue number one when I talked to Mr. Lazy this morning. If you are going to call my line seven times in a row, my house had better be on fire. I realize this may seem like an emergency to you, but it is not my emergency.
  2. Being rude to me on the phone  – This was issue number 2 with Mr. Lazy today. I know saying “no, you have to listen now” might be polite talk in India or Pakistan or wherever you are from, but it is consider rude in the United States. It is consider ultra-rude in the south, where I current reside. I am sorry I hung up on you today, which was also rude, but when I tell you I don’t have time to talk, send me an email or give me a call back later. Do not assume your time is more important than mine and I have to listen to you this moment. The message it sends to me is you are smiling and dialing for dollars and not trying to add any value to the proposition.
  3. Being rude to my wife on the phone – Once again, I realize you might come from a country where you can beat your wife whenever you want, but it does not mean you can beat mine up. Of course, she is perfectly capable of giving you a tongue lashing and then hanging up on you, so feel free Mr. Lazy. And, yes, this HAS happened in the past.
  4. Emailing me numerous times for the same position  – This was issue number 3 with Mr. Lazy. I know it takes a little bit of time, but when you go from Monster to Dice to Career Builder, check and see if you already sent me an email. Otherwise, you are showing me how lazy you are and I would rather talk to a recruiter I know and trust about the position than you. NOTE: I can generally figure out who the company is by looking at your req; if not, I will call someone I trust and ask them if they can figure it out. I am NOT going to call YOU.
  5. Not reading my resume – When you call me or email me based solely on buzzwords, chances are you have something wrong. Yes, I know you have a lovely entry level .NET position you need to fill, but I am not going to work for $25 an hour 1099 or corp-to-corp. Don’t waste my time.
  6. Not reading my location preferences – yes, I realize that there are jobs that are too good to pass up, no matter where they are located. In general, these jobs have a greater than $250k/year salary ($500k/year for California ;->), moving allowance, and no cost health benefits. Yes, I am being a bit ridiculous, but I am not moving for $45 per hour 1099 or corp-to-corp. I can make that here without any headaches. Now, if you have that $1 million per annum, plus bonus, plus moving expenses, plus no-cost benefits, I might even be interested in going to Greenland for a few years.
  7. Having me do your job for you – I am far along in my career, I should not have to spend an hour answering email questions for you to send my resume to your client. You should be able to do the work to figure out if I am the right person to talk to.

On point #7, the email today had the following questions and answers, most of which can be determined by READING my resume.

  1)       Full Name:

  2)       Present location:

  3)       Contact Details:

  4)       INS Status:

  5)       Availability:

  6)       Total IT Experience:

  7)       Total US Experience:

  8)       Ready to Relocate (Yes / NO):

  9)       Expected Compensation:

10)     Comfort levels (on a scale of 1[Least] to 10[High])

        §  OO Design and Analysis

        §  .Net

        §  C#

        §  SharePoint

        §  Silverlight

        §  Web Services

        $  Messaging Framework

        §  PL/SQL (Oracle)

        §  UML

        §  Design Patterns

11)     Interview Preferred Timings :

12)    Do you bear the needed years experienced

        §  OO Design and Analysis               5

        §  .Net (C#, Sharepopint)               3

        §  Silverlight                          1+

        §  Web Services & Messaging Framework   2

        §  PL/SQL (Oracle)                      2

        §  UML                                  2

        §  XML                                  2

BTW, this is not the worst one I have seen. I had one that actually read like a job application (in bad english, of course) and would have me copy almost my entire resume into the email. Do I look desperate?

I was asked by a friend, who is a recruiter, why so many developers hate recruiters. I told him it was because recruiters were not earning their keep. This is not true of all of them, but there are some who are absolutely wasting my time, and the time of others, to try to make a quick buck. If you want to place me, and do not have a dream job, then you should at least take a few minutes to figure out if I am even qualified or would be remotely interested.

For the recruiter friends I have in the Nashville area (and some outside the area), I am not talking about you here. Yes, there are some developers that view all every recruiter as scum, but you know I am not one of them. I do have a problem, however, with recruiters that are nothing more than human search engines, as they take way too much of my money for no added value.

Peace and Grace,

Twitter: @gbworld

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