It is increasingly difficult to imagine a developing company that does not employ IT recruiters or does not use IT recruitment agencies. There are already over 2,500 people in Poland who specialize in this type of recruitment, and at the time of writing this text, there were 377 job offers for IT recruiters on the largest website with job offers in the country.
Who is an IT recruiter and what does he do?
Usually, we start with determining together with the stakeholders – i.e. the IT manager – who the team needs. This takes place during the so-called brief or kick-off – meetings during which we discuss the desired profile in detail. Then the recruiter searches the database of candidates and portals such as LinkedIn. He also promotes job offers on advertising portals and social media. Slowly, recruiters are also learning how to prepare content for a recruitment marketing campaign, such as PPC (Pay Per Click) ads on Facebook or Google Ads, although this topic is still in its infancy.
The stage of searching, called sourcing, requires focus, a well-planned strategy, an accurate definition of what candidates we are looking for and adequate tools.
In some organizations, this part of work is delegated to so-called sourcers (or resourcers), meaning people who specialize in finding candidates but do not contact them to submit an offer.
When we find people who initially match the description, we move on to the contact phase. It may be a phone call if we have a number in the database – the so-called cold call, an e-mail or a message on LinkedIn to arrange an interview with the candidate. During the interview, the recruiter checks whether the candidate meets the specified criteria and tries to present the job offer in a favourable light to encourage the candidate to apply for the position.
A recruiter in a difficult situation of choosing the message template on LinkedIn 😉
It sounds simple, but the truth is that IT professionals receive dozens of messages from recruiters and choose to answer only the most interesting ones. That’s where the ability to build catchy and personalized messages comes in handy.
Conscious recruiters check and compare indicators such as response rate – the ratio of messages sent to those received from a potential candidate.
After a successful interview with the candidate, we prepare a note or a candidate profile, which we present along with the CV to the hiring manager, the person commissioning the recruitment. If the feedback is positive, we coordinate the selection process with the candidate, the HR department and the manager. We arrange interviews, help the candidate to prepare, collect feedback and if everything goes well, we offer him a job. This is where the role of the recruiter usually ends.
I deliberately omitted the various variants of recruitment work and focused on the most archetypal model. In some companies, the work of a recruiter is very independent, even freelance, but there are also organizations like Team Up that work in a unique team recruitment methodology, which you can read about here.
IT recruitment agency or internal HR department?
Simply put, we divide the recruitment of specialists in the IT sector into the recruitment agency and recruiters in-house. The former work for recruitment agencies, while the latter are internal recruiters of companies that employ IT specialists for their company.
In the past, following the example of British and American agencies in the 1990s, an agency recruiter was a typical “chaser” born to work on the telephone, who specialized in reaching directly to passive candidates. He was a bit pushy and liked to use communication tricks like Leo Dicaprio in The Wolf of Wall Street. A man like: “throw him out of the door, he will come back through the window.”
In-house recruiters, on the other hand, were perceived as passive enthusiasts of the “post and pray ” strategy, meaning I post an advertisement and wait for the mythical “CV flow”. When there is no flow, I pass the vacancy to the IT recruitment agency. Today, these stereotypes have less and less to do with reality. Agency recruiters have had to learn better candidate communication and effective social media posting, and in-house recruiters are increasingly not inferior in sourcing skills to their colleagues at top recruiting firms.
In a typical agency, you work on a large cross-section of vacancies and clients, which ensures a high diversity of tasks and network of contacts, but sometimes the pressure of superiors on the targets is high, and this is followed by fluctuation in teams.
The agency environment is slowly changing and becoming more amenable to long-term career building, but it’s a good idea to ask at the interview about how a recruiter is billed at a particular company.
Most often these are targets of the number of completed recruitments or their value in a given period, and intermediate indicators (KPIs – Key Performance Indicators), such as the number of candidates sent per week.
In the internal recruitment department, we can often get to know the positions we recruit for better, thanks to the facilitated contact with the hiring manager. We also have much more information about how things work in our company, and thus arguments to convince a hesitant candidate.
Sometimes we have the best IT recruitment agencies to support us, but we are responsible for much more vacancies at once than in the recruitment company. Because of this, we often do not have much time left for independent sourcing.
Popular metrics to hold an in-house recruiter accountable are the number of hires over a given period and time to fill or the time from opening a position to its effective closing. Qualitative metrics such as quality of hire and candidate retention or Net Promoter Score, which measures the quality of the candidate experience during the recruitment and selection process, are also becoming more common.
How much does an internal IT Recruiter earn?
An internal recruiter, depending on experience, city and company, receives between PLN 4,000 and 9,000 gross of the base monthly salary. Sometimes the second component of the payout is commissions for achieving targets or successful recruitments, but this is not very popular. However, it happens that such recruiters are covered with various types of bonuses, such as annual bonuses, profit sharing, etc.
How much does a Recruiter earn in an IT recruitment agency?
An agency recruiter, despite a similar or slightly smaller basis, almost always receives commissions for completed recruitments. The amount of such a commission may range from PLN 500 for recruitment to several thousand PLN for each success. It is often a certain percentage of the invoice that the agency issues to its client.
A good agency recruiter can confidently double his annual earnings through the commission system.
If you apply to an IT recruitment agency, be sure to ask for an explanation of the applicable commission system during the recruitment interview and ask how many recruitments are closed annually by an average effective recruiter in this team. Many people focus solely on the basis at this stage, which is sure to provide stability, but the commission component will often have a greater impact on the recruiter’s overall earnings.
Agency recruiter after a successful quarter 😉
Is it a job for me?
The job of an IT recruiter requires excellent organization of time and tasks, perseverance in dealing with rejection and setbacks and well-developed communication and web-search skills. It’s a good choice for people who do not mind long sessions of scouring the internet looking for a needle in a haystack, are not afraid of contact with strangers and are naturally curious about other people.
Recruitment is not easy, and job satisfaction largely depends on the company you go to.
We recommend looking for organizations that have well-prepared onboarding programs as well as support and development systems for recruiters, thanks to which the work will become simpler and give better results.
At Team Up, we adhere to the “Servant Leadership” philosophy, in which each Team Leader is responsible for the structured development and success of their pupils.
How to become an IT recruiter? Can you become one without experience?
Even though most job offers for an IT recruiter require at least one year of experience in a similar position, there are companies that employ and train IT recruiters from scratch. What helps are willingness to learn and curiosity about the IT world, previous experience in recruitment or HR (e.g., in temporary recruitment or other specialization than IT), good English and communication skills. At Team Up, we regularly invite people with no IT experience to join us and we have a track record of successful implementations. You can read about the first steps of one such person from our team in this post on our blog.
Working in IT recruitment is a sinusoid of emotions. Celebrating success when we manage to close a difficult position and swallowing the bitterness of disappointment when our candidate rejects an offer at the last stage of the process.
Still, feeling a positive impact on someone’s life when we help them find their dream job is very rewarding!
The message our recruiter received from her candidate 🙂
Translation: I wanted to thank you very much for finding me a new job 🙂 You were the one who found me, called me, convinced me, and then it just went on its own – not without obstacles, by the way 🙂 Thank you very much for all that 🙂
If you have any questions about the IT recruiter profession or want to find out if we are currently looking for a beginner, feel free to contact us via the form on the website.