In corporate recruiting, and especially in the Information Technology sector, response time is critical - and so it should be - this is an industry that is fast moving, fast changing, and forever evolving. And if we're talking about IT recruiting in Toronto, fast turnaround is even more critical, because we operate in the heartbeat of the nation. It's not enough for today's IT recruiters just to be experienced - they need to be acutely aware of the challenges of finding an ideal candidate in an industry that is as diverse as the people who work in it. As well, today's IT recruiter must have an excellent, established network of contacts and connections across the industry, and internationally. Beyond that, recruiters must adapt very quickly to client demands, and keep up with changes and evolutions within the technology industry.
IT recruiting in Toronto, and equally so in the US, is compelling the recruiter to source an almost endless supply of candidates for permanent positions, contractual work, and projects. Having a finger on the pulse of the industry allows a good recruiter to keep ahead of the curve, with an awareness of the latest trends and a focus on future developments. The competition is intense - it necessitates scouting the best talent available AND sourcing the best positions at the best companies. Clearly, everyone wants the top performers and the hottest techs, and industry insiders are already describing a more aggressive marketplace, with a noticeable increase in recruitment of personnel already employed. IT recruiters will have to be consistently creative, with innovative approaches that deliver advantages over the competition.
Big Data (huge and complex data sets) is also making a mark on IT recruiting in Toronto, and throughout the world. Whether it's LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, or one of the more specialized web portals, a new landscape has been shaped - something that industry insiders call a "talent network". This is not the Internet gateway where we once searched for, and posted jobs - this is a whole new world that attracts candidates, employees, and employers with its exponential growth. As it is, information exchange is now instantaneous, interactive, and intermingled - often with more info than we really need to know. However, inasmuch as sourcing candidates over the Internet is central to success, everyone has the same access, and the competitive advantage has been lessened.
In recent years, a myriad of high-tech tools have been introduced into the market - proprietary software to help the recruiter to search, find and source the so-called ideal candidate. And it's no secret that creating that candidate's "social foot-print" is remarkably easy - a profile that articulates technical strengths; experience and expertise; proficiencies and competencies; and a whole lot more. For those engaged in IT recruiting in Toronto, the traditional role of recruiter has clearly changed, becoming more important, and with a more definitive focus: finding that great candidate! In fact, today, it's not at all uncommon to source tactically, and ultimately attract passive candidates (often from competing companies).
Human Resources assessment has also advanced considerably, with our high-speed computers and refined, sophisticated software. The age of Myers-Briggs, and other assessment protocols, has been transformed - with modernized Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) that manage the recruitment process from end to end, and provide value to both candidate and recruiter alike. But along with human resources comes human interaction, and a recruiter-candidate experience that is excellent is one that delivers the best mileage. Great communication between the two is fundamental; returning emails and phone calls to candidates is integral; and cordial, professional conduct during an interview is essential. It all makes for an affirming and positive environment, in an industry that relies heavily on relationship building.
For IT recruiting in Toronto, and in major international cities, the role and responsibility of the recruiter varies by industry, by candidate ranking, even by geography and culture. But the bottom line remains the same - finding and placing the right people into the required position. And the truth is, even with the new tools, the new technology and the new approaches, an experienced and seasoned recruiting professional is the key - that human being who knows how to put it all together.
Candidates have also changed over the years. Working remotely, for instance, has become commonplace - its acceptable to company managers as a viable option; it expands the potential talent pool; it makes those remote job locations not so remote; and it builds a veritable global marketplace. But candidates need more - and a great recruiter will satisfy that need: resume review and improvement; general career planning; coaching for interviews; even guidelines on how to fit in successfully in the new job. Above all, the recruitment process must translate into a win-win proposition for both candidate and employer - and for the recruiter it's absolutely imperative that both are fully satisfied, for the short term and for the longer term.
In the end, it's really about the basics. One recruiter recently compared candidate recruiting to scouting in the sports world. You notice a particular "player" - you keep your eye on him (or her) - and you gauge if he's a good fit for the "team". You consider further: How has his career developed? How does he get along with his "teammates"? Will his "playing style" be a good fit? Can he contribute to a "successful season"? That analogy and those basics are common for IT recruiting in Toronto - the initial candidate research; establishing candidate skills; evaluating history and career path; determining skill strength; and considering professional development. And, let's not forget about getting along with colleagues, and actually expediting the required work.
For the recruiter, the final step in the process is to encourage the candidate to join the winning "team", while convincing the "team manager" that the candidate will help them get to the "playoffs". Like anything else, it's a balancing act, where the tools of the trade, experience and expertise, and knowledge and know-how meld into a formula that works.