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We all know that the cover of a book never tells the whole story; but on the job hunt- first impressions last.  Recruiters and hiring managers want to get past the title page and uncover your story. And in technology staffing, these impressions are vital as the market moves at light speed, languages & software are constantly updating, and companies demand more than just technical skills.  Some of our top recruiters sat down and talked about what makes a good first impression and what immediately turns them off.


KThumbs Up Greenim: I’m most impressed with someone who is passionate about what they do. If you are truly passionate about your job, you go above and beyond. A hiring manager once told me, “if you tell me you are open to learning a technology, but you don’t do anything on your own to learn, it’s like telling me you want to lose weight, but you’ve never been on a treadmill.”

Thumbs Up GreenMike: In the tech industry, there is a misconception that coders & developers are buried in a back corner, headphones in their ears, hunched over a keyboard. This just isn’t the case. Communication skills and personality are becoming more and more critical to our clients.  Effective communication is always a great way to get my attention.

Thumbs Up & Down Red_GreenMarina: Confidence. I guess this can be both impressive and a turn off. You need to believe in yourself, your skills, and your ability to land a job.  But, there is a fine line between confidence and an inflated ego.

Thumbs Down RedOlivia: Leave your ego at the door! We know that you have some of the top tech skills in the country but we have a lot of experience working through the hiring process for your specific skills set.  Plus, we have insight about how certain hiring managers conduct their interviews or how do you get you more money! My goal is to help!

Thumbs Down RedNick: It is frustrating when people immediately shut themselves off to certain industries without even taking the time to research or talk with the company.  It never hurts to network, practice your interview skills, and learn more about an industry that you might not be familiar with.

Thumbs Up GreenRachel: A smile, a handshake, and a put-together appearance (stained clothes happen a lot more often than you think!) go a long way.  But I’m really impressed by someone who can bring in a well-written, easy to follow, 1-2 page resume.  This gives us more time to go beyond the resume and truly get into your needs and wants in a new position.

Thumbs Up GreenNick: I find it really impressive when candidates are able to articulate what they really want. It makes a big difference if you can tell me your ideal type of working environment.  Small team? Collaborative? Work from home? Large organization? Learning opportunities?

Thumbs Down RedMike: Sometimes candidates have had a really bad experience with another recruiting agency and that attitude transfers to me.  I guess it is the classic “one bad apple spoils the bunch” mentality.  But it is really a turn off because my goal is to help you find a job. This is a partnership and the results are mutually beneficial.

Thumbs Up GreenOlivia: I am always on board when a candidate can communicate well.  A candidate who can express what they truly want in a position, helps us to help them.  Communication leads to a relationship, a relationship leads to trust. It is definitely a win-win for everyone.

Thumbs Down RedKim: I’m always turned off when someone thinks their resume is the be-all, end-all. There is so much more to your story and that is one of the reasons we meet with every candidate.  Personality, communication, presentation, and drive are just as important, if not more.

Thumbs Down RedRachel: It sounds cliché, but it happens ALL the time: Don’t be late! Traffic happens; trains are late.  But a quick heads up is always appreciated. If you are late without any explanation, it puts me in a situation where I don’t know if you’ll do the same thing to a hiring manager.

Thumbs Up & Down Red_GreenJustin: Demeanor & presentation: these both impress me and turn me off.  Being put together is more than just how you dress. It is about whether you are prepared, have eliminated outside distractions, and are focused on the the task at hand.  Someone who is well put together, with a clear head, confidence, and goals… has my attention.

Recruiters and hiring managers can screen hundreds of resumes every month.  At Talener, we also meet with all of the candidates we represent in order to build relationships, find the right candidate-client match, and to make sure that we are getting you the best possible package.  Getting to know you is part of opening your story and learning more about you. The hiring process can be daunting at any stage of your career and our goal is to have you put your best foot forward when you do get in front of your potential future boss.

Need more interview tips or want to prepare your resume?  Contact us for expert advice, market trends, or just to talk about potential positions what we have open!

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