Tim on Leadership

Musings on Management and Leadership from Tim Parker

Where are the Great Developer's Resumes? 

When a company posts a job for a developer or QA person, we tend to get a ton of resumes that come from Monster and other on-line resume collection sources.  Most of these are immediate rejects, and it is very rare to get a decent resume that translates into a top performer from these sources.  There's two factors at play here.

The first is the Monster Resume Factor (TM).  When you've been hiring technical folks for a few years you start to see the same resume over and over.  Why?  These folks tend to join a company, underperform, get laid off, and start the cycle again in a predictable pattern lasting 6 to 12 months.  That's usually why most managers looking for specialized talent never touch Monster or similar job sites.  The vast majority of people on those sites have been there a long time and simply do not have the skills to get off those sites for very long.  Sure, there are exceptions, but by and large if I see 1,000 resumes from Monster 990 will be crap.  If you want entry level people, or those with generic skills and a couple of years of experience, then sites like Monster are fine, but most recruiting is for specialized positions with specific skill sets, and those tend to show up in more specialized areas that the generic job sites.

The second factor is that the Great Developer is never out of a job for long, except by choice.  Great Developers (another TM) are recognized as such by the companies that hire them and those companies will do everything possible to avoid losing that person.  There are only a few Great Developers (TM) out there, far fewer than the Not-So-Great Developers (not worthy of a TM), and they almost never appear on the job market (least of all on Monster). That's because the Great Developer only changes jobs when the company they are with gets boring, broke, or they are forced to find a job due to some external factor (they followed their significant other to a job in Moosejaw, for example). The Great Developer is simply never short of work for long.  Other companies poach Great Developers, headhunters seek them out, and they never, ever, post on Monster except when forced to by circumstances.

So don't expect to see me looking for new employees on Monster!