Recruiter Spotlight: Danielle Smith
Danielle is currently a Senior Technical Recruiter for Signature Consultants, an IT service management company. Before entering the recruiting industry, she worked her way through college as a Customer Care Representative for State Farm, where she honed skills in communication and identifying customer needs; both of which are invaluable as a recruiter. Her first exposure to the recruiting side of technology came after Danielle graduated college with a degree in communications. At that time, she wasn’t exactly sure what she wanted to do next. Then, two of her best friends, who currently worked in the recruiting industry, suggested that she give recruiting a shot and referred her to Signature Consultants. Danielle went through the interview process and was extended a job offer where she started her work in the IT industry as a recruiter. Since then, she has come to love what she does and the company she works for.
Danielle’s talks about her day to day job as a recruiter saying that “each day is different, but for the most part I’m speaking with IT professionals who may be looking for a new position, working for us currently, or they were looking at one point and may not be on the market now, but just keeping in touch”. She also attends meetings and lunches with consultants and hiring managers to learn about the positions they need filled as well as to keep up with the rapidly evolving IT environment. By constantly communicating with IT professionals, including software engineers, managers, and consultants, and by staying on top of the job market, Danielle sees first hand what the industry is like and what skills and qualities are in demand and will get someone hired.
While Danielle enjoys recruiting, some parts of the job can be tough. When asked what her least favorite part of being a recruiter was, Danielle said that it was when she doesn’t get feedback for candidates from a client. When clients provide feedback, it makes it easier to find exactly what they’re looking for as well as give candidates information valuable to their personal progress and success.
Danielle says that her favorite part of the job is “building relationships, networking, and learning about IT”. Being enveloped in IT, Danielle says what fascinates her is how she is “always learning something new [and] there are so many technologies involved! It’s cool to see developer’s personal projects and learn about what they do day to day”.
When applying for a job, IT candidates have a great benefit because of the high demand for their skill sets. However, that doesn’t mean that anyone can just walk into an interview and expect an offer; there are still some challenges candidates face when looking for a job. Danielle says that the biggest challenge she encounters when trying to fill a position is finding someone that is both the right technical fit, as well as the right culture fit. Practicing technical skills as a developer is very important, but it is not everything.
When asked what advice Danielle would give to candidates looking for an entry level developer role, she suggested “put[ting] as much as you can in your resume (IT Experience) even if it’s home freelance or projects on your own. Be as detailed as possible, describe specifically what you did with each technology you used”. When a candidate just shotguns technologies onto their resume it can look like they are just using buzzwords to get an interview. By following Danielle’s advice and writing about how you used a given technology to accomplish what you did, your resume will stand out.
Recruiting is hard work, but meeting new people and learning about technology and the industry can be very rewarding. When Danielle isn’t helping IT professionals find their dream job, or helping companies fill important roles, she enjoys spending time with friends and family, boating (wake boarding and wake surfing), hiking, and “anything outdoors when it’s not too hot”.