Stupid Recruiter Tricks

I like to work with recruiters. I've used them in the past. I refer people to them. But I am missing something here.

I just got off the phone with a recruiter. He was using some kind of a phone, either VOIP or a cell phone, but it cut in and out. I had to spell someone's name for him twice. He didn't hear me. I finally stopped the call because I couldn't stand it. Stupid recruiter trick #1: Use a phone that makes someone unable to actually converse with you.

The other trick happened last week. A recruiter emailed me, looking for an “agile developer.” He said “rate is based on velocity.” This is so wrong in so many dimensions, I thought I had misread the email. I asked him. Nope, that's what he meant. His reply, “Our client is not basing the rate on experience, but on how well and efficient the candidate's code is.  Velocity = Productivity. ” Stupid recruiter trick #2: not understanding agile and pushing the hiring manager to explain what the manager is really looking for.

OMG. I thought that with the depression/recession, stupid recruiters would be unable to keep their jobs. I guess not.

Recruiters and hiring managers: personal velocity is meaningless, especially on an agile team. The team works together to deliver features. If you persist in measuring people's productivity, they will game the system by always estimating stories as slightly larger than they are, or breaking stories down into tasks and assigning very large numbers to those tasks.

I won't be referring people to these guys. TSTL. (In fiction, that's a character who is Too Stupid To Live.)

3 Replies to “Stupid Recruiter Tricks”

  1. Your first trick made me laugh and reminded me an interview I got a while go for a large company. They had me travel in one side of the country but the manager was on the other side (error #1). Then they decided to set up a video conference call. That took one hour and two technicians to setup. The audio quality was as bad as what you described (error#2). Even worse, the position appeared to be for a project that did not exist (error #3).

  2. How are these things tricks? The first just sounds like a poor connection. It’s not as if using a VOIP or a cell phone for communication is uncommon. The second is just ignorance of what velocity means in the context of agile development. If one is too stupid to live because of a lack of understanding of agile development then we’d have 90% of all managers, developers, and recruiters drop dead.

  3. Well said Bubba.

    In todays world there does seem to be an over abundance of self-approving bloggers with too much time on their hands.

    Not quite sure what the point of this blog entry is but the first case is clearly as you said a bad connection and certainly worthy of reprieve. I mean come on! I know from personal experience with my carrier that they are far from reliable at any time so I would be scared to have Johanna on the phone as I may also be TSTL (too stupid to live!!)

    In the second case I think you have nailed it.

    Surely there are better and more interesting things to be blogging about? Strikes me though that this blog might be guilty of being for want of a better expression “TSTL…(too stupid to Last)”

    The depression clearly hasn’t killed off poor blogging…

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