Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Those Nasty Questions

There are a lot things that a recruiter needs to know about your (the candidate) situation in order to do their job well. I could probably think of a 100 things but I won't list them all now in order to prevent your early unscheduled nap. A lot of the things we ask help us assess urgency. Like most decisions, urgency is one of the things that drive the timeline of a decision.

I know that most people who read this will change jobs in the next 10 years. My clients who hire me to find qualified candidate in a position now to make a move are not interested in candidates interested in making a move in 10 years or even 2 years. We are looking for people who are in a position now to make a move. In most cases, just having an interest is not going to be enough. As a result, all I can do or any recruiter can do is probe by way of asking questions to make sure that no one gets their time wasted in the process of interviewing. Time is one of those things that no matter what you do, you can't get back if you lose it.

So, even though some of the questions that you get asked may seem inappropriate, if you are dealing with a good recruiter, those questions are important. I'm going to give you an example of a real call that took place yesterday between me and a candidate who contacted me about a new opportunity.

The candidate worked at AMD and I am aware of the AMD layoffs that took place there. I asked the candidate if he was affected by the layoffs. He became irate and questioned why this was important. I explained it is important for me to know because I need to know as much as I can in order to do my job which is to ensure that if an offer gets generated, it's an acceptable offer and it gets accepted. So I asked again a little differently. I asked if he was currently employed and if so, is there a time line on that employment. Again, the candidate got very agitated and questioned why at this point what I was asking was important. I knew right away, this relationship was not going to go anywhere and we both ended the call.

Changing jobs is not easy, I am sure it is one of the most challenging situations right up there with death, taxes and divorce. Thing is though, there are things a recruiter needs to know in order to ensure everything works out for the best. I would advise you to answer these questions, it will go a long way and if things work out, you get a new job with a company you like and ideally it's a position that will provide an enhanced level of challenge, responsibility, and money. It all sounds good right? As for me, Recruiting can be a thankless job. I love it thought. Have a great day.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Actively Recruiting

There are three types of Hardware Engineers I am actively recruiting.

1. Senior Level Chip Verification Engineer.

2. Senior level Analog Design Engineer doing high speed analog circuit design.

3. Senior Level Digital Circuit Design Engineer with about 8 years experience.

Please forgive me for the lack of detail I have listed here because I know if this is what you do, you already know what's required and I can fill in the blanks once we talk details on the phone. Please contact me at 647.342.5166 or send me an email at

Recruiting can be a thankless job sometimes

Being a recruiter can be a thankless job. It can and usually is very transactional. We get called when we are needed and after we deliver, it can be the end of the line. Sometimes though you can find things or hear things that make you feel that you did good. Here is a quick example. Back in the mid 90's I recruited a software engineer who was working on Toronto for a client of mine in California. I rarely ever met the candidates I was working with because they were in the US and I am in Toronto. In this case though we met at a coffee shop so we could say hello to each other. I placed him with my client and we had a few conversations after that but that was it. Last week, I thought I would call him and say hello. I tracked him down and gave him a call. He answered and I said hi, It's Jason Davis, do you remember me? Of course he said no and I proceeded to remind him of who I was was. He said Oh Wow, you changed my life. I said for the better? He said yes! He is now a manager at a different company and he loves California and has done very well. It's the little things.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Where are they now?

It's interesting to see where people are now. I have information of well over many many hundreds of hardware and software engineers from ATI. The company does not exist anymore and it's interesting to see where everyone is working today. I spent some time yesterday night looking at some of the software engineers who were writing device drivers back in the 90's and found an interesting company headed by Alexander Neshmonin. He is in Toronto and started a company called 3D Condo Explorer. It's an interesting company and it seems things are going well for them.

Monday, December 12, 2011


I think it's great when people try to create interesting ways to attract candidates. There is a guy named Raj Singh who runs staffing at Intersil. He has come up with new system that hooks into your network on Facebook and allows the sharing of job opportunities. The site is called myjoblinx. I would be amazed if there is a rush of design engineers in the semiconductor industry applying for jobs this way. Maybe I am wrong. I plan on calling Raj this week to get the lowdown.