loading...
Cover image for Things tech recruiters look for in your resume and the first interview part 2

Things tech recruiters look for in your resume and the first interview part 2

geshan profile image Geshan Manandhar ・8 min read

Applied to many jobs and haven’t heard back? Not sure what is missing in your resume. Could not make that first impression in the initial interview? Then you must read forward. In this post, three tech recruiters from Sydney’s well-known companies unveil things they look for in a CV and points they evaluate in the initial interview. You will know how to make that first impression with your CV and initial interview from a tech recruiter’s view. As a bonus, there are tips for finding jobs in a pandemic, carry on reading.

Hiring

Let’s jump directly to the main thing, what do recruiters look for in the CV and the first interview. The following were the question for this time (as a follow up of the last post):

The questions

  1. How many resumes/candidate profiles do you go through in a day usually?

  2. What are the things you look for in a resume sent for a technical role?

  3. What are the top 3 things you evaluate in a candidate when conducting the first interview?

  4. What would be your most important tip to job seekers while we are going through this COVID-19 pandemic situation?

The answers

Let’s look at the answers from 3 tech recruiters from Canva, Domain, and Elmo. The big C, D, and E of Australia’s tech landscape :).

Jasmine Alderton (Domain) seeks for motivators and value alignment

Jasmine Alderdon has been working for Domain as a Senior Technical Recruiter for more than a year. If you are new to Australia and have not heard about Domain.com, you must be living under a rock :). The same goes if you have been living here for long. Domain is synonymous with Property listing for renting and buying here in Australia.

The Domain group currently has 10+ open tech roles.

Jasmine voiced her point of view about the questions in the following way:

How many resumes/candidate profiles do you go through in a day usually?

The number of profiles can really vary from skillset to skillset and week to week! At Domain, our tech recruitment team recruits across a number of different skill sets from web engineers, backend engineers, DevOps, QA, product managers, designers, and leadership roles; and despite COVID, we’re still really busy with hiring which has been a real blessing.

For a Software Engineer role, we can receive anywhere from 20–60 applications for one role. Typically my day starts by logging on first thing and checking who has applied overnight, and I’ll use this time to set up initial phone chats with candidates who I think match what we’re looking for. I screen through 20–30 resumes in a sitting, sometimes more; especially as we’ve seen more people open to work now due to COVID.

What are the things you look for in a resume sent for a technical role?

There’s no real right or wrong answer for that we look for in a resume, so long as*it’s easy to read, clearly articulates the technologies you’ve worked with, and, most importantly, focuses on the value you’ve added to your team/company.

I see many many resumes who only talk about ‘roles & responsibilities’, which is essentially a reverse job description when what we’re really interested in is what are you really great at and where have you created the most impact?

Try to keep your resume to no more than 3 pages and include links to any websites or repositories you maintain so we can take a peek at your work.

I’m also interested to understand a little about what you’re most passionate about and what would excite you in your next role — this can create an immediate connection to an opportunity we may have at Domain.

The Tech Lead talks about getting exposure to projects which you can talk about on your resume, and I always encourage people to check out the

*Tech Interview Handbook, which has got so much useful information in preparing for your job search!*

What are the top 3 things you evaluate in a candidate when conducting the first interview?

There are a few things we’re assessing in the first interview, which will influence the candidate going through to the next stage:

  1. Their motivators for leaving their current role and for wanting a new role — I encourage people to go away and brainstorm their intrinsic vs. extrinsic motivators if they’ve not figured this out yet.

  2. Do they align with Domain’s values of Open minds open doors, Leap grow repeat, Have adventures and Passion is contagious

  3. Have they got the potential to do this role?

What would be your most important tip to job seekers while we are going through this COVID-19 pandemic situation?

My top tip is to keep persevering!

Jason, our CEO said at the very beginning of lockdown that there are two things we need to protect during COVID -

  1. our people and their ability to keep being resilient to change, and

  2. our products and continuing to grow and develop them for our customers. I’m sure our resiliency has all been tested this year, but the ability to pick yourself up and go again is such an important life skill.

Be open to change and different opportunities. I know many people who have used their skills for very different roles which have really paid off for them so

I’d encourage you to go into your job search with an open mind and use this time to connect and build networks you might not have previously done.

The other thing which I think is super important is to take care of yourself. Make time to switch off and have a break, whether that’s going for a socially distanced walk, face-timing a friend, painting, singing, or whatever else makes you feel good!

Jasmine has jotted down essential tips in her reply, from the tech interview handbook to persevering, all of them will be super useful IMHO.

Scott Crowe (Canva) looks for relevant experience and technical capability

Scott Crowe is the lead recruiter at Canva for almost five years. Canva is liberating, creating amazing graphics making it accessible and easy for masses to create striking graphics. As a unicorn with more than 10 million users spread across 190 countries, Canva is a force to be reckoned with. You can even create an impressive CV using Canva. Another cherry on the cake is, Canva is voted one of the best places to work.

With over 50 open tech roles in Sydney, Canva is surely growing well even in the pandemic.

Scott expressed his views on the question is a concise fashion; let’s read what his opinions:

How many resumes/candidate profiles do you go through in a day usually?

It is usually 30–40 a day.

What are the things you look for in a resume sent for a technical role?

I look for relevant experience and project scope. If you have relevant language experience, highlight it early on, that’s a big plus.

What are the top 3 things you evaluate in a candidate when conducting the first interview?

I primarily go after:

  • Interest in the product

  • comprehension of technical challenges and

  • technical capability

What would be your most important tip to job seekers while we are going through this COVID-19 pandemic situation?

My most important tip would be, keep your head up and know that things will get better.

As for someone who is applying, don’t go for a scattergun approach; if you over apply or get confused with too many applications, you will miss the real opportunities.

Scott was brief and to the point with his answers. Not following the “scattergun approach” might be the best takeaway from his replies.

Olivia Spata (ELMO) appraises technical ability and behavioral aspects

Olivia Spata has been working at ELMO as a Technical HR Talent Consultant for more than three years now. ELMO is one of the fastest-growing HR and payroll SAAS in the region with over 1400 clients across APAC.

ELMO has more than 10 open tech roles in Sydney and Melbourne. It also has offices in New Zealand.

Olivia conveyed her opinions on the question in the following way; let’s read what she stated:

How many resumes/candidate profiles do you go through in a day usually?

Depending on the role, we get 20–30 applications a day. It also depends on the time of year. January is a busy month; towards the end of the financial year and from October- December.

What are the things you look for in a resume sent for a technical role?

Some of the things I look in a resume are:

  • Experience working in an agile environment

  • Working on products

  • has grown in their role, has been with the same business for more than a year and a half

  • vast range of skill set

  • has the motivation to grow and learn, i.e., has moved up in their role.

What are the top 3 things you evaluate in a candidate when conducting the first interview?

  • Technical ability — do they have the skills to do the job. Do they have the knowledge to do the job?

  • Behavioural aspects — are they able to work autonomously as well as part of a team; will they be able to work in a fast-paced working environment; can they handle the pressure.

  • Cultural angle — will they make a positive impact on the team; are they a team worker or an independent person. Do they share knowledge and skill sets with others?

What would be your most important tip to job seekers while we are going through this COVID-19 pandemic situation? #

Don’t just apply for any job. Make sure your resume speaks to what you “actually” did.

Honesty in a resume is key. Apply for a job that “actually” fits your skill set.

Olivia put her views very clearly in a crisp way. Something to take note of her response is, to be honest in your resume.

Conclusion

I would like to heartily thank all of the recruiters who took time out of their busy schedules to answer the questions and help all the job seekers reading this. I genuinely hope you can get the “insider information” about tech recruitment, and you will work more to make your CV as sharp as a butcher’s knife. I wish you make that stellar first impression in your initial screening interviews/calls.

I wish you all the best for your job hunt in Australia and hope you crack that first tech role or move to a better job with these tips.

Share your thoughts and experience in finding a job in Australia. Have you found a role that makes you happy? If you are looking for a single place to find many tech roles in Australia, please register at AU Tech Jobs. See you there!

Posted on by:

geshan profile

Geshan Manandhar

@geshan

Lead Software Engineer | Agile follower | Speaker | Google Developer Expert -- Blogging at Geshan.com.np.

Discussion

pic
Editor guide