Five Tips To Get Noticed By Technical Recruiters
By Kristi Leff
There’s no doubt about it, high-tech manufacturing is exploding—and as a result, the need for highly skilled and experienced engineers and technicians is growing right along with it. A shortage of talent has high-tech companies competing for qualified candidates, and many rely on technical resource companies like NSTAR to acquire the best and brightest employees. More than ever, we are on the lookout for potential new team members. To help you navigate the hiring waters of technical resource providers like NSTAR, we’ve put together the following tips:
1. When it comes to your résumé, forget everything you learned at your college career center.
Fancy formatting may impress a corporate hiring manager with your graphic-design skills, but it just spells more work for technical resource providers. We often use portals to submit résumés to our hiring managers, so the simpler your résumé is, the easier it is to convert. If you really want to maximize your exposure, follow these basic formatting guidelines:
- Use Arial font in a standard bulleted format.
- Keep it to one page, with your name and address at the top.
- Put your education first, followed by employers, from most recent to oldest.
- Include dates and location for each employer.
- Include specific software and system experience.
2. Save your life story for the interview. Instead, tailor your résumé to the job description.
With so many résumés to review, recruiters have the process down to a science. To be honest, we don’t spend time reading long-winded statements with summaries, goals and objectives. We’ll scan your résumé, looking for specific keywords that align with the job posting. This means that your best chance to shine is to have a résumé peppered with statements and industry-specific keywords that fit the position. For example, if the job requires hands-on electromechanical experience, list examples/bullets to support that within each job you have held. If your work history doesn’t showcase that experience, consider listing hobbies, internships and college classes that provided that experience. We once placed a candidate into an electromechanical technician role because of his associates degree in electronics engineering coupled with his hobby as a diesel mechanic. We needed both electrical and mechanical skill sets for that opportunity.
3. Mind your manners: proper phone and email etiquette matters!
Being polite and respectful when answering the phone is key. Asking what job we are calling about, telling us you’re no longer interested in the position or asking about pay immediately won’t leave your recruiter with a great first impression. Remember that we aren’t a one-off job application. Our goal is to build a technical resource team. You’ll improve your chances of joining us if you answer clearly with your name and engage with enthusiasm, regardless of the job.
If you can’t take the call, let it go to voicemail. While casual messages with background music may seem like a good idea to amuse your friends and family, it’s not conducive to presenting a professional image when seeking employment. We prefer clear, concise messages and an empty voicemail box so we can leave a detailed message.
Email is another area where a little professionalism can go a long way. “LaBunny@hotmail.com” does not inspire a follow-up email. Yourname@gmail.com is probably available, free, and worth the time investment to set up.
4. Follow up early and often.
To all the recent college grads: We know it’s scary out there, and we can sometimes be intimidating. Don’t be afraid to call your contact after you have applied or had an interview. Follow up is key and lets us know you are serious and interested. We hate to admit it, but we have a million moving parts and sometimes the best candidates fall through the cracks. Don’t let that happen to you! As the old adage goes, the squeaky wheel gets the grease! Your follow-up helps us remember you. But don’t overdo it. After an interview, you should follow up that day with a thank-you. Then wait a few days to check in to see if a decision has been made.
5. Build a relationship with your recruiter.
What’s different about applying for a position through a technical resource provider rather than directly with a company? Well, for one, hiring managers at a company are often looking at a candidate to fill one specific position for the long term. Establishing a good rapport with us is more critical than impressing one company’s hiring manager, because it potentially opens you up to more opportunities. Conversely, starting off on the wrong foot with a technical resource company can mean losing out on many opportunities, not just one.
Regardless of the current technical job-market climate, it’s important to remember that finding a job is a full-time job. It requires determination, dedication, professionalism and follow-through. Working with a technical resource company can help make the process easier for you and for the managers onsite where you will be working. And, if you’re interested in joining the NSTAR team, following these simple tips will surely put you ahead of your competition.