Sunday, January 10, 2010

Dear CR: I Just Posted My Resume On Dice!


I just posted my resume on Dice -- the first time using any such service. I've gotten a couple calls immediately, suggesting it might be just the beginning of a stream of recruiters that are not so targeted and are possibly not so beneficial to work with for a number of reasons. I've heard horror stories. So I'm trying to figure out how to deal with this new strategy -- or whether I should at all. Any thoughts?




Most of the jobs posted on are from recruiters. I just did a quick search for Java jobs in San Francisco, and 29 of the first 30 results were from recruiters. That tells me if you want to get connected quickly with technical recruiters, posting your resume on is a good idea. Be prepared to deal with a high variance in the quality of recruiters that you work with. People who tell you they are considering you for multiple opportunities are either full of crap and want to just put you in their database OR they don't know much about the position they are recruiting for and are connecting you with jobs you may not have a real chance with.

    Here's a few tips on working with recruiters:

  • Prepare to be let down. Recruiters say things like "I'll let you know" or "I'll call you next week" and rarely follow through. It's some combination of being inconsiderate, incompetent, or just brushing you off in a way that doesn't let you down in the moment. If you don't let broken promises ruin your day, you'll be more chipper in the long run.

  • You're recruiter isn't an expert. If they ask you a question, just do the best you can to answer it concisely and to the point. A recruiter doesn't truly understand the context of the position they are trying to fill, so asking clarifying questions that require a deep level of expertise will likely not help you. If an answer sounds like bullshit, don't press the recruiter for more information and just realize they are talking above their actual level of experience.

  • If your recruiter asks you to come into their office, that isn't a sign that you are a strong fit for a specific job. They are trying to figure out if you are presentable in person and perhaps to test some of your knowledge in a computerized exam. I recommend making trips to a recruiter's office only when you don't have something better to do. Don't cancel important plans because you think you have a job interview, it's just another step in the screening process. Of course you may be submitted to a job, which is why it's worth going.

  • When you see a recruiters job posting, sometimes you can figure out who the company really is and then apply directly. A recruiter was recently advertising human resources positions in Mt. View, and it was clear from the job description that the hiring company was Google, even though Google was never mentioned by name. If you can figure out who the company is, go around the recruiter and apply directly. Don't forget to use LinkedIn to see if you can find a person you know who works there, or maybe an alumni from a school you attended.

  • While you are at it, post your resume on CareerBuilder and craigslist, too.


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