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Recruiters Agree, Agile Experience Is Needed In Central Ohio

A discussion of recruiting in Central Ohio

Last week I attended the IIBA Columbus Chapter meeting at State Auto where a special event took place. This event features a panel of recruiters that helped the audience make ourselves better in 2019. Some were independent and others represented a company. I have been intrigued over the years of how HR processes work in IT, so I was excited to attend.

Registration required participants to provide a question for the panelists. Dan Watson, the IIBA Columbus chapter president, compiled and categorized all questions. Dan also moderated the event. My question asked if many companies were incorporating gaming into the recruiting process. The question was influenced by my presentation I gave on Scrum Master Interview Games last year at the Cinci Day Of Agile conference. Sadly, not many companies are using games in the recruiting process.

The panel of recruiters

Most of the questions asked what employers looked for in candidates. Some job seekers even challenged the panel on techniques to change careers, relocate, or other concerns like age discrimination. The panel also offered how their day-to-day activities, and how to collaborate with recruiters to show your interest. One surprising topic arose with the recruiters about companies needing agile experience. The audience did not ask the question, however the panelists agreed:

Central Ohio needs candidates with Agile experience.

This includes Scrum Masters, Agile Coaches, and those who have worked on teams that implement some kind of agile framework. Although not a surprise to me, I could see that some of the room was intrigued by this statement. I found this interesting to note, especially at an event tailored to Business Analysis.

The audience was very engaged at the event. We discussed some common themes, like how to dress and present yourself, be on time for your interview, etc.

The panel also addressed some things that surprised me:

  1. Resumes get 10-30 seconds of consideration. I thought it was closer to a minute, so you have to make yours stand out.
  2. Don’t include an objective statement in your resume. They offer no value unless you are changing your career.
  3. Immediate, creative attention-getters should be on your resume. Some examples given were a creative banner, creative structure, or other visual aids you would find on a dashboard.
  4. Resumes should only include relevant experience, and be 2 pages long, tops. Too long or too short and you are wasting everyone’s time, including yours.
  5. Interviewers are looking for your behaviors over your experience. This is especially important when working on teams. For example, .NET as a skill might be important, but working with others to select the right solutions is preferred. This fact is especially important when changing careers. Impress a recruiter with how your would perform at the job and you will likely impress a hiring manager.
  6. Follow up with recruiters 1-2 times per week. Recruiters want you to work with them to know you are serious about finding the best opportunity for you. One of the panelists said that he makes 20-30 calls per day, which explains why sometimes things fall through the cracks.
  7. Recruiters spend most of their day on Linked In. Indeed, Monster and similar tools are secondary and don’t provide much value these days.

Be sure to check out the IIBA Columbus website for future events.