Do IT Recruiters Have to Be Technical?

Posted on Feb 02, 2012 by User Not Found in IT Staffing and Recruiting

frustrated by technologyTechnical, or not technical, that is the question…for IT recruiters. We’ve seen too many blog posts written by developers or techies complaining how IT recruiters are clueless about technologies. Before we jump to a solution for that problem, we want to ask: Do IT recruiters have to be technical?

Let’s take a look at both sides of the debate:


No, IT recruiters can be excellent without being technical.

Like recruiters in other industries, the success-driven factors for IT recruitment are still people and communications. If an IT recruiter is focused on the job candidate and committed to fully communicate with this candidate, he/she will be able to truly understand that candidate’s expertise and specialties, strengths and weaknesses, needs and wants.  Therefore it is just a matter of time to match up the candidate with a great position that benefits both job seeker and employer. Listen to what Maryna Aharkava, Forte’s IT recruiter has to say:


“When I am on the phone with a job candidate, I will ask questions from my perspective and listen to how the candidate responds. Of course the candidate has questions about the position sometimes, and some of these questions can be really ‘technical’. I will just be honest and ask them further questions to try to understand them. It’s all about a sincere conversation which gets me to know the candidate.”


Yes, IT recruiters need to be technical.

How can you expect to win over a .NET developer when your email just reveals that you know nothing about .NET framework? No recruiters want to be called as “clueless”.  Being technical not only helps you connect with candidates but also helps you gain a better judgment on a candidate’s level of skills, work capabilities, and most importantly, whether the candidate is a good fit or not. The knowledge of assorted technologies needs to be gained over time. Still there are many ways you can improve your technical skills more quickly.


"You have to do your homework first,” says Maryna. “Use Google and Wikipedia to learn the areas and terminologies you are specializing in. At Forte, we also learn from each other. Our senior recruiters will share their knowledge and experience with us. Moreover, I work with a team of developers in our office every day. I can always ask them questions.”


There is no right or wrong in this ongoing discussion. It is obvious that an IT recruiter can achieve career excellence by tackling both aspects. One more important tip for technical recruiters: teamwork. Collaborate with your colleagues. Ask questions for your IT consultants. Learn from each candidate you get in touch with. Demystifying the technology world does not seem so impossible, does it?


Leave a Reply and share your insights about whether IT recruiters need to be technical with us.


Contributor of this post:

Maryna Aharkava, IT recruiter at Forte Group, specializing in .NET technology (SharePoint, Biztalk, ASP.NET), quality assurance (QA/QTP), business architect, and business analyst.Connect with Maryna on LinkedIn. 

Image Credit: Cato's Place