These Days, Recruiters Are Worth the Money


These Days, Recruiters Are Worth the Money

By Vanessa Merit Nornberg 

When it comes to sourcing the right interview candidates, I've never been keen 
to use recruiters. But I recently changed my mind.

My company, Metal Mafia, has an excellent candidate screening process, a super 
training program, and a very successful team of employees to show for it. 

But hiring has always been a difficult task for me because each time I get ready 
to hire, it takes me forever to find the right type of candidates to even 
get the screening process started.

Despite the fact that I carefully consider where to advertise for candidates--
I try to maximize the search dollars and get a good mix of potential 
applicants--it always takes me a long time to 
find people suited well to the company, and therefore, even worth interviewing.

I've tried everything from placing ads on large job boards like, to 
smaller specialized job boards that cater to sales hires or fashion jobs, to 
local university boards where 
I can post for free (or close to it). Each time, I experience the same slow 
crawl toward finally finding the right person. It has taken me up to five months 
to find the right kind of hire in the past. 
So in November when I decided I needed to think about hiring for the 
new year, I was not optimistic. 

For me, recruiters have traditionally been out of the question because I figured 
they would be a waste of time and never be as good at sending me the right 
people for the job as I would be in reviewing resumes myself. 
They're also too expensive for my small budget. But as I got ready to place my 
job ads again, one of my senior staff members came to me and offered me the name 
of a fashion recruiter she knew and thought could help. 
I was skeptical, but I called her anyway, figuring listening 
would cost me nothing. 

The recruiter convinced me she would do a thorough job, but I still hesitated 
because of the price. I do not have large sums of money to devote to the hiring 
process, and by my calculations, 
when all was said and done, using the recruiter was going to cost me three times 
as much as my usual techniques. On the other hand, the recruiter would only 
charge me if she found someone 
I decided to hire, which meant I was risking nothing, and could always come back 
to my original methods. I bit the bullet and signed up, reminding myself 
"nothing ventured, nothing gained."

The recruiter sent me the resumes of 10 entry-level candidates. I screened six 
by phone, met three in person, and found the right hire--all in a month. 
The cost suddenly became much less, because I saved so much time in the process, 
and because I got a pool of applicants who were decidedly better to choose from 
than in the past. Even more interesting, perhaps, was an insight 
the right candidate shared with me during the interview process. When I asked 
why she had chosen to work with a recruiter rather than post on job boards, 
she said "because recruiters make sure your resume gets seen, while submitting 
via the Internet is like sending your resume into oblivion."

If most people these days are thinking like my new hire, the recruiters will 
clearly have the best selection of candidates every time. Looks like I've got 
an essential new hiring strategy.

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Recruitment Tools

What is defined as a "Recruitment Tool"?  

Is it the database system they use?  

Is it Social Media - LinkedIn, Facebook etc.?  

There are so many but here are a few  "tools" to add extra benefit to recruiters.

To help build those LinkedIn networks while you browse try WhoWorks.At a quick and simple plug in.

HootSuite allows you to manage and measure multiple social networks.  Direct integration from TriSys to Hootsweet is also available for job posting across different social media.

Assignments by HootSuite quickly and easily assign Tweets and Facebook messages within your team.

Google Alerts lets you receive update e-mails based on your queries allowing you to monitor news, competitors or even a little bit of celebrity watching!

Let me know any other great tools that you may have come across.



Are Recruiters Really Bad People ?



By Andrew Fairley

I remember a day some time ago, early in my career. 
Another normal day in the office; making calls, arranging interviews etc. 
What made this day particularly stand out in my memory was a call I made to a 
prospective client. 

I found a lead for a design agency looking for a Web Developer. 
I specialised in resourcing for the Digital and New Media industry, and gave 
them a call straight after researching who the Decision Maker was on LinkedIn.
“Hi”, I said, introducing myself and my company. “I’m looking for 
[decision maker's name].” “Can I ask what the call’s regarding?”
“Sure, I was calling about the Web Developer vacancy – I specialise in these 
roles and wanted to have a chat about a great candidate who could be 
of interest”.
“OK,” the chap replied, warily. “He won’t take any recruitment calls, he hates 
agencies and won’t work with them.”

I started asking for an email address to send through details, when he 
interrupted and said his boss was there and wanted to speak to me. 
Great! I thought to myself. Must want to see what we can offer.
I was hit with a tirade. “I don’t know where you’ve found out about our vacancy 
but I have zero interest in using you. 
As far as I am concerned you’re little better than pimps, selling people for 
profit. Your whole industry is filled with thieves and is despicable.”
His rant continued for another 15 seconds or so, calling me worse 
and unprintable) names, before slamming the phone down.

My first reaction was shock; I hadn’t experienced anything like that, most 
people at least stay civil. My second was indignation – when I googled their 
company the second listing was a entry filled with complaints 
about that agency’s pushy and rude salespeople. 
But mostly it got me thinking: why does the industry have such a bad reputation, 
and is it deserved?

There’s little doubt the industry has a bad rep. Everyone has a horror story 
about a terrible recruiter and there are regular scandals about recruiters 
behaving badly, from posing as candidates to gain leads to sending snide emails 
to candidates – in one example the recruiter lost his job due to the backlash. 
Recruiters are often compared to second-hand car salesmen; slimy, greasy and 
pushy fibbers who are completely sales-driven and don’t care about their 
customers, only their next sale.

The first issue contributing to the negative image of the industry is the nature 
of agency recruitment itself. 
Most recruiters work on a contingency basis, and only get a fee on candidate 
If you play it as a numbers game, you need X amount of candidates to interview 
(across a range of active roles) to get 1 placement. 
For every candidate that interviews, you probably spoke to 3. 
For each of those 3, you probably reviewed 15 CVs. 
So, our equation is 15 x 3 x X = 1 placement. 
The value of X depends on the industry and role – if it is 10, then you probably 
spoke to 30 candidates in total, and looked at 450 CVs. 
Most recruiters are expected to make a minimum 2 placements a month.
As a result, we work hard and work long hours, but based on the number of CVs we 
look at and candidates we speak to, we have to prioritise our time, spending as 
little as possible on candidates who are unsuitable and focusing on our 
‘winning tickets’; the candidates we have most confidence in placing. 

I’m proud to say that all the candidates I have placed have thanked me for the 
time and dedication I gave them. On the flip side, there were plenty of 
candidates who got far less of my time. It may not be fair, but as my client is 
the one paying me, I have to remember where the money is and dedicate my time 

The second issue is how saturated the industry is. Clients regularly receive 
dozens of calls from recruiters and large companies have PSLs with hundreds 
of agencies. 
It is better to be first than it is to be better – there are a limited number 
of candidates and the first recruiter to speak to the candidate for a role 
gets ‘ownership’. Hence, speed is often prioritised over service and candidates 
may get bumped to large numbers of roles, even if they aren’t right for them, 
simply to get them in first before someone else can. 

Unfair on the candidate, annoying for the client, but that is the nature of 
contingency recruitment. Clients who enjoy working with agencies usually 
have a small PSL of trusted agencies with a long-standing relationship, and 
won’t accept candidates (without very good cause) from other agencies to 
maintain that relationship.

The final issue is the industry’s entry requirements. Easy to get into, requires 
few qualifications, high reward. I’ve yet to meet a recruiter who didn’t fall 
into it – I don’t know anyone whose lifelong ambition has been to be a 
recruiter! Cowboys are always going to be drawn to the industry but don’t last 
against those who act with integrity. Most recruiters quit within the first 
year, and those who make it through are those who see beyond the lure of the 
quick buck and recognise that to build a career takes a heck of a lot of time 
and dedication – the antithesis of a cowboy recruiter.
Every industry has its share of bad apples and recruitment is no different. 
There are bad recruiters out there, but to tar them all with the same brush is 
to do a multi-billion pound industry a disservice. 

The industry exists because it is necessary, and provides a genuine service to 
the vast majority of clients. Most recruiters are nice people, working hard to 
put food on the table and a roof over their families’ heads. And believe me, 
we hate cowboys just as much as you! 

If you still aren’t convinced, ask yourself this – is it the recruiter 
who is to blame, or the industry?

Original Page

Industrial Sabotage - a light hearted tale!

Our developers did another build this evening, but could not wait for it to finish. Instead of locking the PC however, they turned off the monitor of the build machine whilst it was still running. This ought to have been no problem as we have a secure office, in a secure building, manned by security guards.

Upon returning home, and not receiving the automated build e-mail notification, they did a quick sanity check by remotely connecting to the build PC, only to find that the build had failed.

Upon further investigation, it turned out that the office cleaner had wiped the keyboard with a cloth, inadvertently pressing the 'space' bar causing the build to pause. The result was that the build did not complete as planned, no automated e-mail was sent and the software did not automatically upgrade our global network.

We simply un-paused the build and it completed correctly.

Not the most exciting industrial espionage or sabotage I guess we have seen, but nevertheless, a good example of the 'threat from within'.

In future, we vow to lock our PC's before we go home - honest guv!

Paradigm Shift Alert!

I was recently drawn to revisit some musings by someone I greatly respect in the software development world, Mr Daniel Appleman. Much of what he says resonates with me, as we both cut our teeth on the Microsoft Visual Basic, SQL Server and Windows platforms in the 1990's, having come from different backgrounds prior to that point (mine was in embedded systems programming and Unix/C in academia/research).

Dan talks about a 'paradigm shift' with respect to building enterprise line of business (LOB) applications and in particular how Microsoft has continuously re-invented the same technologies it invented in the 90's, making older versions obsolete as required. In my view this is because there are not enough of the younger generation of 'bright young things' who have the foresight and capabilities (time/money) to break free from the established concepts and paradigms.

Many of these new clever developers end up at Microsoft or Google or Facebook etc.. and there is no question that they are great software engineers, however you really need experience to be driving true innovation which changes the world of software development, and these young guys don't have it, obviously.

I am frankly sick to death of yet another data access technology, forms designer, or markup language, or scripting language or design pattern etc.. Too many of these simply re-invent the same wheel which travels along the same old road. In many cases they fix what was broken, but leave holes where there were none.

You only have to look around at the complete lack of depth in what was in the 90's called the 4th generation language market (Informix 4GL, Ingres 4GL etc..). These tools provided a much higher level of abstraction than with a traditional 3rd level programming language like C, C++ or even C# and VB/Net, and allowed designers to build entire systems with a back end database, front end screens and reports. Because the 'desktop is dead' according to many commentators, and single page web applications with a complex mixture of markup, styles and scripting frameworks are all the rage, there are very few LOB frameworks comparable to yesteryears 4GL's.

The time is right for a new paradigm - one that capitalises on the innovations in web, cloud and mobile technologies, and provides a more intuitive and lower required skill level for designers/developers, otherwise we are going to have a major shortage of LOB apps and expertise in the coming years.

I know Dan has a hunch or two about what product(s) may be the answer to these problems, but I have now spent over two decades designing my own sophisticated, rapid application development business framework, and TriSys remains the best I have used so far.

More Snow, Pi Revisited And The Death Of Starter Edition

Hasn't the weather once again challenged us

Deep snow hit again over the weekend, so I thought I would revisit the Pi for a while

When Garry saw the last Pi blog I did, he went out and brought a Pi case

What my altered iPod case did show was the relative size of the Pi

And after taking some stick for my tablecloth (Whats wrong with my tablecloth?)

I wanted to test with a standard Microsoft Desktop (Tablecloth Not Included)




Windows 2008 R2 Small

Disclaimer: No Tablecloths were harmed in the making of this blog

The breaking news over the weekend was the end of life of our Version 10 Starter Edition

Version 10 starter edition is dead, "Long live Version 10 Starter Editon"

The developer guys have been hard at work over the last 18 months and Version 10 is now an Enterprise product, and is being released as "Smart Client"

We will still support our current Version 10 Starter edition customers, however new customers will now get "Version 10 Smart Client".

Garry's blog explains this :-

TriSys Version 10 is now available as a 'smart client', which is downloadable and installable on a windows desktop computer, however all data is held in the cloud at either Amazon, Microsoft or Google. TriSys V10 Smart Client is highly integrated with Microsoft Office and performs very responsively, even where broadband speeds are mediocre. No web browser, security restrictions or complex add-ins are required. It just works.

That explains it in a nutshell.

For further information and videos on our "Version 10 Smart Client", see:-

To download the trial version click here

To view the release notes click here

Were all excited at the features included in Version 10 Smart Client and we hope you will be too.

Paging Results In TriSys V10

Within the TriSys application where a user runs a Look up or Search for certain record types the information is returned as a list within a grid.  

The grids in TriSys are designed to return information a page at a time.  Paging is designed to speed up the return of results allowing a user to work with large data sets.  

In the top left of the results grid the user will see “Page X of Y” followed by the total number of records that match the criteria in the example shown below Page 1 of 12 is displayed with the first 50 rows, the total number records that match the criteria is 597.

The User can step forwards and backwards through the pages of the results using the forward and back arrows. 

On occasions a user requires the full data set in one page such as for mail merging everyone in one go.  NB: Normal e-mail protocol should still be followed to avoid getting reported as SPAM or blocked by e-mail servers.

To increase the number of rows per page from the Ribbon the user needs to go to Tools>User Options. 

Within the User Options select Grid Management click on the dropdown shown to select the number of rows per page that are returned in the results grid.

It is advisable to close TriSys and reopen it then rerun the Lookup or Search to populate the results grid again.  Having run the same search as earlier notice how the top right of the grid now shows “Page 1 or 1” with the same total of 597 records.

NB: Removing Paging when working with large datasets is likely to slow the speed at which the results are returned to the grid.


Starter Edition is now Smart Client

We are no longer offering TriSys V10 Starter Edition to new customers. Existing customers however will be able to continue to enjoy the starter edition and subscription prices have been frozen.

Starter edition was first released 18 months ago, and during that time we have continued innovating at a rapid pace and as a result, Version 10 is no longer an entry level recruitment software CRM application, rather it is a sophisticated and extremely powerful enterprise business system.

We recognise that in todays economy, the majority of startup recruitment agencies require a basic, rudimentary, easy to use, non-customisable and most importantly for them, a low cost recruitment system. Whilst the original TriSys starter edition fitted into this model very well indeed, the current offering is now too sophisticated and no longer matches the requirements of one or two man startup recruitment agencies.

Now that Version 10 has evolved into an enterprise capable product with a large and growing customer base demonstrating extensive return on investment (ROI), we are therefore going to focus on recruitment agencies which would most benefit from a comprehensive, powerful, scalable and highly customisable recruitment software system which addresses their sophisticated business model and helps them compete and win in their chosen area of specialisation.

We recognise that there are a small number of startup recruitment agencies who have the ambition and foresight to invest in a comprehensive recruitment system, and it is these customers together with those more established and successful recruitment agencies to which we wish to deliver TriSys Version 10 in future.

TriSys Version 10 is now available as a 'smart client', which is downloadable and installable on a windows desktop computer, however all data is held in the cloud at either Amazon, Microsoft or Google. TriSys V10 Smart Client is highly integrated with Microsoft Office and performs very responsively, even where broadband speeds are mediocre. No web browser, security restrictions or complex add-ins are required. It just works.

We will continue to deliver TriSys both on-premise and on-demand and will be working hard over the next few months to innovate in this space and deliver yet higher levels of customer service by way of both technology products, support and consultancy. In particular we will be offering Version 10 to our existing remote desktop customers via our new universal client access mechanism which will enable customers using Apple Mac, iOS, Android, Windows phone or Blackberry to access their TriSys system from any device in any location.

Please follow our progress on twitter or our V10 release notes in order to understand the amount of innovation we have engineered into V10 over the last 18 months.

TriSys Internationalisation

This month we have tackled internationalisation - the process of adding support for multiple languages worldwide.

This is not just about translating text into non-English character strings, it also involves upgrading encryption algorithms, documentation, web services compatibility, social media and of course a lot of testing.

We are currently working with some international clients/prospects and can demonstrate a number of these in our release notes:

We look forward to welcoming more clients from all over the world.

TriSys-Berry Pi

Which One Is The Raspberry Pi

Its The One On The Left

The Basics:- Keyboard, Mouse, HDMI Cable, Network Cable,
USB Power Cable, Raspberry Pi, 4gb SD Card

The End Result:- TriSys V10 on the Rasberry Pi