IT Job Industry Insights

We love the IT job industry. In this blog topic we share our insights into the various aspects of the always changing IT job career field.

Are you searching information technology (IT) employment in the Dallas area?

If so, you know employment hunting can be difficult because so many college grads and job hoppers are also searching for IT jobs in the DFW area. Adding to the challenge is the fact many IT jobs require special skills or the jobs are for a project that ends in the next year or two.

So what do you do? Many newbies and seasoned IT professionals alike have found success by working with an IT staffing agency.

But before jumping onboard the technical recruiter wagon train,  there are a few things you should know before you work with an IT staffing agency.  This post will explain the key factors you need to understand to make sure working with an IT recruiter is a good choice for you.

Creams, Ointments, Prescription Treatments, IT recruiters

What is the meaning of the subtitle?  You said “What?” and kept reading.  If people aren’t drawn in by what you say or do, you’re essentially invisible nowadays.  The most important quality is visibility.

But how do you go about finding and schmoozing with IT recruiters to maximize your visibility?

Away back in February of 2011 we were already discussing the recovery from the 2008 market crash (sorry…market rebalancing).  We discussed how information technology (IT) staffing managers in Dallas were reluctant to take on new hires, instead preferring to make do with what they had.  

A lot of sectors in the information technology markets were experiencing a “jobless recovery," meaning that companies were getting back on their feet, but they weren’t hiring any new staff for information technology openings.  

As the leading IT staffing agency in Dallas,  we advised that flexibility was the key to setting yourself apart from the IT job hunting crowd.   You needed to be able to describe yourself in a way to fulfill multiple roles and appear particularly attractive to IT staffing managers.  That strategy worked for many of our clients.

Suddenly around 2012 and 2013 business started to blossom, and the recovery picked up speed.  That hiring boom was a great boon to people who had just been scraping by, and burning through their retirement savings to survive.  

Not getting the response you want from your IT résumé submissions?

You’re doing great on your own.  You don’t need some Dallas Technical Recruiter to find a job.  Heck, you’re on Craigslist every single day, and you’re auditing Monster™ and Indeed™ with the fervor of a religious zealot!

You’ve sent out 20 (or maybe even 50) résumés and you know it’s just a matter of time.  One of these lucky companies is going to realize how fortunate they would be to have you as a stunning new addition to their otherwise lackluster IT team.

Except…  It has been almost four weeks, and you haven’t even had a nibble.  Few phone calls; one interview that went nowhere; and even the few “thank you for your application” replies didn’t even have a signature or a name on them.

What’s wrong with these people?  How could they possibly fail to recognize your talent and the massive contribution you could make to the company?  Did anybody even read your résumé?

Development vs. Support

Whether you're a member or an overseer, the various aspects of the IT team can often be seen to be in conflict.  It's entirely understandable—and it's also unnecessary.

This is not to diminish the importance of the folks down in the server room who keep the entire infrastructure running—their world is too esoteric for most executives to understand, so they manage to escape a lot of the conflict.  Their problems are generally tied up with budget, and prying loose the funds necessary to upgrade equipment. 

How does your IT hiring process work? We've talked in this space before about the cost of hiring. Typically you can expect to spend between 100% and 300% of the salary for that position while acquiring a new worker and over the span of the first year.

Where does all that money go? If someone unexpectedly leaves a position, and you don't have a person queued up to replace them, it can lead to a lot of unplanned expenses. One of the biggest is paid overtime, with other workers taking up the slack.

Likely as not it will be shared among several workers (at time-and-a-half), working together, sometimes simultaneously (two workers at time-and-a-half), and unavoidably upon occasion, at cross purposes. Even if you can draw somebody from a different pool of workers to cover that position, somewhere down the line, that replacement worker needs to be covered as well. It's a cascade effect so you can't really escape the cost.

Flexibility—The Right Fit

There are two ways to think about flexibility as it relates to the best jobs. The first is how well you fit the job; the second is how well the job fits you.

In the first case, you would analyze the requirements for success in a particular position. If you have the ability to conform to those requirements then there is a good possibility that you can be successful there.

In the second instance you must determine if you can live with imposed lifestyle changes. Too much travel? Would relocation affect spouse's job? Higher salary, but the location has a greater cost of living?

Being flexible is important but knowing your priorities is the most crucial part of finding a job that works well for you. When working with a Dallas IT staffing agency, make your preferred job criteria clear to your recruiter.

Computers need Health Care, too

It has been Open Season on hospitals and other medical institutions for the last several years.  Perhaps this is because they're full of altruistic individuals that "just want to help.”  The Hippocratic Oath's most important precept is "Do no harm,” and perhaps it's simply hard for them to imagine anybody else would want to deliberately set out to do damage.

The cure for that particular attitude might simply be a visit to the Emergency Room on any weekend evening.  Apparently there a lot of people who wish to do malicious harm.

Without naming names, since it encompasses just about everybody in the industry anyway, medical institutions have resisted upgrading their software for so long that doing it now is an expensive process.

What is HR thinking about?

We really like a B.A, B.Sc., or Ph.D., not because of their intrinsic value, which is demonstrating knowledge or accomplishment. When we see a doctorate or associate degree we know that you have learned "how to learn".

That makes you particularly valuable to us. Over the course of one year we can spend as much as 150% of your salary training you, providing you with training materials, and diverting the time and resources of your mentors (and others) that must help get you up to speed.

Your degree means that we will spend far less time and consequently less money teaching you because, with dedicated learners, teaching something once is often enough. You might pick up in just three months the same information that would take up to a year to train in a neophyte. Your degree makes you a better deal.

The Dallas market demands more IT people every day

The demand is quickly outstripping the supply of talented IT people to fill all the available positions currently available in the Dallas employment market. Dallas started as a manufacturing center back in the 19th century, hosting and maintaining the country's largest farmer's market in the late 1800s. Its state fair has been around since 1886 and hosting the Red River Rivalry since 1900 when Oklahoma was still just a territory.

Since then it has become a major center for commerce, energy, medical research, corporate headquarters of all descriptions, and computers. Without Dallas, the integrated circuit (later to become the modern microchip) might have been a much later development. It's the home of the Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) and Texas Instruments, the people who made my very first electronic calculator.

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