Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Maybe April...and a bit about recruiters

That's what a recruiter told me today. People are talking about April as the time when jobs might start to come on the market.


It's hard to tell the fine line between "keeping in touch" with a recruiter and being a pest. I have to learn to nag in the nicest way possible.

There's one recruiter that I call once a week and also email. She always ends the conversation with "keep staying in touch, it helps." And I do. Today, I had to really press her to look at what they have brewing at the agency and whether I might match any of them. It sounded like there were a few possibilities, but, the reqs aren't open or someone's on vacation, blah, blah, blah. She was very vague. I'm not sure she's even going to try to match me up with these openings. So, I'll have to call next week and see what's up. Maybe I'll send her a box of chocolates or something. Does bribing help to keep you on the "A" list with recruiters?

Based on my discussion with the recruiter, employers want the EXACT skills or no dice. Of course, if they thought about it, they'd realize that they're not applying good logic. Companies have an urgent opening, so they only want someone who matches their needs EXACTLY. But they can't find that perfect person, so the position remains open while they search. And the need becomes even more urgent. If they took a close match who could come up to speed quickly, they'd get the work done. If they wait, the work won't get done at all.

And don't get me started about all the jobs that are going overseas. If I wanted to work in Pune or Bangalore India, I'd have a job tomorrow. I think I'm going to write to Obama about this. Reward those who DON'T send the jobs overseas and we'll see a lot more people employed.

On the other hand, I spoke to a recruiter today about a job posting that someone had sent to me. Turns out, I had applied for this job (and was supposed to get a phone interview, but they've dropped off the face of the earth). This recruiter offered to speak to the client and let them know I was still interested in the job, even though he couldn't represent me! How unexpectedly nice. But odd, since most recruiters don't ever do that. And maybe he won't. Who knows.

So far, nothing of any substance going on. One start up company did contact me and ask me to resend my resume and samples (I had applied through a venture capital website). No idea if that means they are interested. I suppose I'll follow up with a call or email at the end of the week. I'll call another recruiter tomorrow to see if she received any feedback from the client where she submitted my resume yesterday. I applied to another start up today...my skills aren't an exact match but I did try to write a persuasive cover email.

That's where it's at folks. I have a lunch scheduled with a former manager this week. She wasn't able to open a req for a writer (she did try), but I might as well catch up with her. And I've contacted another former manager. He also doesn't have any openings, but I'll probably schedule a lunch with him next week, again to catch up and to remind him that I exist. He's rather well connected in the start up world, so who knows. And there are a couple of job fairs I'll attend in March. I'm not convinced that anything ever comes from being part of a cattle call (such are job fairs), but I might as well go through the motions.

I'm a bit disappointed that I didn't hear from the start up that wanted someone to work for free. How many applicants could they have had for THAT job? And then there was the part time, telecommute job (pays just enough money to not affect my unemployment benefits). No response there either.

April...sounds like I have to resign myself to waiting for April.


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