Observations from an IT Recruiter

New am I as an IT recruiter. Sure, I have interviewed and hired for my own development team, but this new job has me reading hundreds of resumes a week. Here are some observations about reading resumes and talking to job candidates: 1. Canadians do not have as much education as candidates from the USSR and China, 2. I have no idea of the authenticity of many Indian post secondary schools, 3. There is more to life than money, 4. Why post your resume up to a job board when I cannot even contact you?

It did not take me long to observe that of the candidates that post up for work, very few Canadians have much higher education. This was corroborated by my fellow recruiters with a decidedly “Yea, that is not news” comment. If I had the time and energy I could do up statistics of the percentage of the number of Canadian resumes I process, but I would guess it is no more than 5%. Somehow I seem to get as many candidates from Britain and even South Africa. The vast majority of candidates come from the USSR states, China, and India. For companies picky about fluent English the pickings are slim. Canadian candidates also have much more attitude than foreign applicants. There seems to be some sense of entitlement here, and I have no idea why.

There are so many Indian post secondary schools it boggles the mind. How to verify these schools is difficult to say. Some Indian candidates do not even put their schools on their resumes. I am told that Indian recruiters discriminate against fellow Indians due to their caste system. Naive me, treating everyone equally. Hey, you Indian recruiters, stop that!

If I call a candidate up for a position and the first question they ask is “What is the rate?”, a number of red flags raise their ugly heads. What about your skills, your interpersonal and communications skills, and fit with the job requirements? As with most other people I do not like to work with nasty people, good candidate on paper, or not. I suppose it is better to know this early rather than have a company phone back asking me why I sent them such an ignoramus.

If you post your resume up to a job board, you should expect and indeed want others to phone you. Posting up a contact phone number that is out of service, has no answering machine or rings back to some isolated shack in Siberia will not assist in your job search. You need to be available to talk, and no, email will not do. If I call during the day and then in the evening and cannot get to you I will eventually give up. No company will be this persistent.

At least try to make some type of effort at your job search. If I cannot read your resume and find your skill set, then take some constructive advice and think about changing it. While I am only one person, most recruiters will bypass your resume and look for easier pastures. Remember that I am on your side, but I also need to sell your resume to prospective companies. If I do not think your resume will be understood by HR, your job search will stop there. Sometimes simple changes to your resume can make a world of difference.

2 thoughts on “Observations from an IT Recruiter

  1. Bryan

    Firstly, I resent your remarks about Canadians not being as well educated as Russians, Chinese or other countries. I am a Canadian and I spent 4 long years in University to attain my degree and to compare my degree to one from one of those other countries is an insult to me and to the education system in Canada.

    Canadians are prime candidates for many jobs in the USA and many US employers actively recruit from Canada.

    So lay off with your negative Canadian remarks. If you wish to have good candidates, then stop with ugly, negative Canadian remarks.

    [Don: Firstly, thanks for commenting. Secondly, I have an undergrad and masters from Canada and certainly do not discriminate against Canadians. The fact remains that my observations while recruiting online that there is an overwhelming number of foreign IT developers looking and available for work. What this means I am uncertain. Does this mean that native Canadian IT workers already have jobs and do not post resumes online, I have my doubts. I am also looking for people in Toronto, a destination hotspot for immigrants. Maybe the world’s smartest IT people are migrating to Toronto, I don’t know. It is also possible that more immigrants lie on their resumes, while Canadians do not? This is possible as we cannot often verify their credentials.

    My observation remains that I find more IT professionals with higher university credentials from countries outside of Canada than within, while recruiting for IT jobs in Toronto, and overwhelmingly so. This does not make me anti-Canadian, by any means. Also note that these immigrants are usually naturalized Canadians, though they have been educated in their home countries. Maybe we should be glad they have chosen to reside in Canada?

  2. Khurana

    I resent your remarks about everybody except Chinese. It’s true that Chinese candidates come with a lot of degrees but don’t they teach English in China ? I have been in recruitment for over 20 years and my observation is that Chinese candidates speak English in Chinese. Chinese recruiters discriminate against candidates from Hong Kong, Korea, Vietnam, Japan and India.

    Just so that you know, “Canada is a land of immigrants”. There is nothing like ‘Canadian’. Canadians are all immigrants from different countries (except aboriginals).

    Everyone has a negative side…just like yours, which is quite visible and discriminatory. Maybe you should learn to be more flexible and adaptable and stop branding people based on their country of origin.

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