Why I traded in my CS Degree for a Recruiting Degree

Ok, so I never had a CS Degree and there is no such thing as a Recruiting Degree… but I will explain in this article why I enjoy recruiting (and am not envious of being an engineer). And why there should and probably will be a Recruiting Degree soon.

*All comments are from my experience recruiting hundreds of software engineers, PMs, and designers for hundreds of Bay Area startups at RockIT Recruiting.

First, it’s necessary to understand a bit of backstory on how the profession of recruiting has changed drastically, even just in the 10 years I have been here.

10 years ago: Recruiting was a sub-set of HR and an after-thought for HR Managers; Hiring was very reactive; Measuring employee performance and source of hire was VERY limited; Companies had the jobs so they held the power; Recruiters had networks and rolodexes

Today: Recruiters are one of the first 10–20 hires, long before an HR Manager exists; CEOs list recruiting as their Top Priority; extensive tools exist to identify, source and track candidates; Candidates have the skills so they hold the power; Companies create Employer Brands; Recruiters are multifaceted

To be a successful recruiter today, you must: research and identify talent, understand technology and the startup landscape, read people and understand their motivations, tell a story to sell an opportunity when a company is stealth and has no actual product, create a positive candidate experience, give career advice, and help negotiate a fair offer.

That’s a lot of work, so why do I enjoy it?

Get a free MBA- I have interviewed hundreds of founders, VPs of Engineering/ Design/ Product, COOs, VCs etc. I get to ask them: how did you start your business? Why is your company special? What do you need to continue to grow and succeed?

Build a company- Engineers can build a feature or product, but you can’t build a company without a team. Recruiters put the pieces together so everyone can do what they do best.

It feels good- Some people need a new job, some people want a new job, either way you present an exciting new chapter in people’s lives and that is very rewarding. This sometimes gets overlooked, but should never be forgotten or taken for granted.

$$$- Again, this is purely based on my experience at RockIT Recruiting, but one of our Sr Recruiters was just telling me that out of 20 hires he has made this year, only 1 was earning more than he will.

Every day is different- Recruiters deal with people on both sides of the equation, and every person and situation is unique. As social engineers, our problem solving skills have to be more dynamic than any other I’ve encountered. And it’s not just the people that are changing, technology and even the tools we use are in constant flux!

Get paid to have coffee/ lunch/ beers with interesting people- It is our job to meet people, learn about them, and help them.

Sounds great, right? I think so. If you think so too, ask me about working at RockIT because we are growing.

Still, recruiting is a profession that is going through a re-birth. Anyone who has been in it for >5 years has a story about how they “fell into it.” My guess is that by the time my daughter is drawing pictures of what she wants to be when she grows up, the recruiting world will have talent agent icons like Ari Gold and Jerry Maguire. Being a recruiter will be the end goal.