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How to Find a Great Developer

November 19th, 2013

Good morning,


This was an excellent Presentation from Peter Bell.  He’s a very impressive guy with a lot of experience.


Bottom line:

1) Meet-Ups

2) Mailing Lists

3) Conferences

4) Referrals


Posted in Talener Blog

How to hire "Passive Candidates"?

October 29th, 2013

Trying to hire really talented software developers continues to get harder and harder.  The market is so strong nowadays that the industry has labeled employed candidates looking for new jobs as “Passive Candidates.”  And let’s face it, 99% of great software developers are employed, so therefore, 99% of software engineers on the market are “Passive Candidates” (PC).

Here are a few tips that have helped our clients hire more of these “Passive Candidates.”

  1. Momentum: Keeping up excitement and interest is imperative throughout the entire process. From the time you talk to a “PC” about the job, to the time they come into the office for a 1st interview, to time to the “PC” has their 2nd interview, and the time to offer, energy is key.  When it comes to the process, the chase is half of the battle.
  2. Process: Have your interview process well-defined and make sure that all of the decision makers are available, in town, and ready to play their part in this story.  “PCs” are looking at the interviewing process as an example of how decisions are made and how things get done at the company.  Be organized, prepared, and ready to act.
  3. Offers: Make an offer, be ready to make a counter-offer, and then get the offer letter out.  Clearly overpaying will help you get the deal closed, but most of the time it is not really about the extra money or extra week of vacation. Instead, candidates want to think that they negotiated and didn’t leave anything on the table.  As with a hot housing market, competition is fierce and first offers are rarely accepted. In order to contend and close the deal, be ready to act swiftly.

These are 3 simple things that you can do to convert more “PCs” into hires.  For more information on this topic, please feel free to reach out to me anytime @michaeldsupin.  

Posted in Candidate of the month, Career Tips, News, Talener Blog

What makes a Great Developer?

October 28th, 2013

What makes a great developer? 

Last Thursday, I attended the Business Insider StartUp 2013 Conference,

I attended a class run by Peter Bell titled, Outsourcing and Managing Software Development.  It was extremely insightful and I wanted to share some notes around the question: What makes a great developer?

3 Ps- Programming, Professionalism, Product 

1)     Programming– hardest to determine, give the developer a project to work on, like a bug tracking system, pay them $1,500 to see how you’d interact with them before making a fulltime offer

2)      Professionalism– meaning a professional developer should do the following:

A)      Test Driven Development-  

B)      Unit Test

C)      Break project into working code

D)      Have a GitHub account

4)      Product– they should have a really good sense of the product and understand it, what problems are you solving


Thanks Peter for the insight and I hope that other people use your 3 P approach to identifying talent.


Posted in Career Tips, News, Talener Blog

SourceIn NYC Conference in NYC – 9/10/2013

September 12th, 2013

Some highlights from this very informative gathering of staffing agencies and LinkedIn recruiting specialists:


Why is Talent so hard to find?

Candidates have a choice of offers and use them to demand better compensation and benefits

Increases in # of Counter Offers / Cold Feet as Talent Retention becomes paramount

Competition from other agencies. Even agencies who try to work exclusives with their clients are under pressure to deliver quickly vs. invest the time to source the best

Managing clients’ expectations in line with the market continues to provide challenges across industries, particularly in tech

“Despite some naively held beliefs of some staffing executives, there actually is little loyalty in the marketplace from clients or candidates, which leads to a vicious cycle of more of the same”

*Differentiation remains the key for staffing agencies to remain competitive


The most successful recruiters are already looking to how recruiting will be done in 2015. The big 5 trends are:

                1) Embracing the Social Enterprise

                                #1 long-lasting trend in recruiting

                                #1 source of quality candidates

From a business development standpoint: 57% of a purchase decision is complete before a customer engages a supplier. 75% of B2B buyers say social media would influence on a future purpose

                2) Engaging the 80%

There are 4 types of candidates in the world:

  1. Active – sending out resumes and actively looking for a new position (21% of the market)
  2. Tiptoer (15%) – Thinking about changing jobs and reaching out to close associates
  3. Explorer (44%) – Not looking for a new job but willing to discuss a new opportunity with a recruiter
  4. Super Passive (20%) – Happily employed and not interested in a new opportunity

The tiptoers and explorers of the world (59% of the market) are together known as approachable

                3) Build Trust + Preferences through Education

Don’t be afraid to share knowledge, intelligence and expertise publically. There’s a difference between releasing trade secrets and keeping your audiences tied into you through content.

E.g. Home Depot – by offering incredible content around DIY projects in the home, like how to properly lay tile, they vastly increase the chances that consumers of their content will purchase the tile/grout/etc. from Home Depot as opposed to anywhere else (the benefit is far greater than the potential cannibalism of their own offered service to install tile)

                4) Optimize content for Mobile, because it’s not going away

                5) Embrace Data and its Power

                                ~The Moneyball Effect


InMail Protips

The average InMail response rate for agencies is 10-15% — 20% on the high end for a very effective agency.

1)      No more blanket template messages – write a master template and CUSTOMIZE it for targeted individuals

  1. Offer a sincere compliment and a specific observation of their background
  2. Quick, simple, no BS message

2)      Take the time to subdivide projects

  1. More, smaller projects will always trump scale-heavy approaches. No identical message should go to more than 10-15 people (otherwise find a way to subdivide further)

3)      Keep a level of mystery/intrigue in your InMail message

  1. Keep it short and simple, but make them want to engage YOU (i.e. not your client/job) back

4)      Short subject lines (optimize for mobile) – even just a word or two

5)      Limit the use of adjectives – they are fluffy

  1. Powerful verbs are much better

6)      Give them a piece of yourself

  1. We’re all humans after all – don’t ever forget that

7)      “Magic phrases” to help increase response rate

  1. “Open minded”
  2. “2nd Request”

Talent Pipeline

1)      Examine your “Touch Plant” (if you don’t have one, GET one)

  1. What are the systematic ways we are engaging our prospective and existing candidates daily?
  2. Most agency recruiters are admittedly too afraid/lazy to take the necessary time to create stable talent flow processes, and structure their day around them.
    1. Many stop at structuring the daily business, not the activities within the structure

Personal Profiles and Group Memberships

1)      Don’t be afraid to have your LI profile stand out, be unique and express your individuality

  1. Your audience is not dumb, and again, we’re all humans. People engage People

2)      Group memberships should be maximized, but remain fluid throughout a career

  1. They’re much more effective than most agency recruiters realize
  2. Don’t just post jobs – monitor conversations, engage back whenever possible

7 Habits of Highly Effective Recruiters

1)      They do their Homework!

  1. Connect to all your clients, candidates, coworkers and other industry participants
  2. Consider the LI member experience
  3. Mix up your search strategies
    1. Keyword, concept, implicit, natural language, indirect searches
  4. Utilize the Skill Tags page (

2)      They are Boolean Ninjas

  1. Beyond the standard OR and AND, use parentheses and NOT in creative ways

3)      They use Shortcuts!

  1. Refinement filters on searches
    1. Creating custom filters for commonly executed searches
  2. InMail Templates
  3. Update Me

4)      They organize their chaos

  1. Use the Clipboard
  2. Use To-Do Lists
  3. (Effectively) use projects

5)      They source 24/7/365 (even in their sleep)

  1. Search alerts
    1. Capture new LI members (over 2 per second globally) and existing members who update their profile
  2. Similar Profiles and Profile Match features
    1. Combine with a custom filter to get constant new, relevant results

6)      They stay up to date with new products

  1. CheckIn by LinkedIn
  2. LinkedIn Talent Solutions Learning Center (free to all LI Recruiter account holders)

7)      They invest in their recruiting future

  1. Use tags and statuses within LI Recruiter to make future searching faster

Social Selling

                “Social selling is reminding everyone that who you know is more important that what you know”

                “Visibility creates opportunities”

                “It’s not the size of your network, but how you use it”

1)      Use your status updates to

  1. Engage and Promote your network
    1. E.g. LinkedIn gives you Birthday alerts – give someone a shout out from time to time!
  2. Inform your network
    1. Industry News & Relevant Content – one click sharing makes it VERY easy

“Proficiency in social media is a differentiator now, but will soon be a qualifier.”

Resume to Reputation (R2R) – The 9 Core Principles

1)      Promote your brand through your LinkedIn profile

2)      Elevate your status from sales rep to trusted advisor

  1. To succeed you must be the best at what you do for a specific audience

3)      Let your profile sell for you

  1. Focus on how you’ve helped your customers, NOT on your personal achievements

4)      Educate potential clients/candidates who visit your profile

  1. Use a variety of rich media, and update it regularly

5)      Transfer of trust through profile to another member

6)      Attract top talent

7)      Differentiate yourself from other recruiters

8)      Spur your network connections to take action

9)      Generate reciprocal business for the ecosystem       

Posted in Current Events, Events, Sourcing Ideas, Talener Blog, Training

Social Recruiting Survey from Jobvite, Interesting Read!

September 6th, 2013

Attached is report from Jobvite on Social Recruiting.  Jobvite is a SaaS company that provides an ATS used by many corporations to help manage their recruiting efforts.


Happy Reading,


Posted in Talener Blog

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