Steve Dix...Comedian?

Raptus Regaliter

Foraging for food in the bins beside the Information Highway.

08.04.2004 08:23 - RANT : Recruitment Consultants


Why are Recruitment Consultants such idiots?

I am currently busily looking for a job, one of thousands at the moment, and I am having to put up with these parasites.  They label themselves \"IT Specialists\", but they haven\'t got a clue.

For Example :

I was told yesterday that I hadn\'t got enough PHP/Perl/MySQL experience for a senior job I applied for.  The requirement was for ten years.  Neither perl nor PHP have been round that long.  In fact, I\'m probably one of the most experienced PHP people you can get, as I\'ve been writing it since 1997 when it was PHP/FI.  I hate to blow my own trumpet, but I was probably one of the first people using PHP in the UK.

Another Example :

A recruiter asks for OOP.  I tell him I\'ve done Java, C++ and Object-oriented programming in PHP. (which isn\'t totally object-oriented the way that java is in that it doesn\'t force you to use object orientation, but you can if you so wish).

\"But have you written anything in OOP?\" he asks.  I was, I must admit, speechless.

I constantly get turned away from C jobs.  I\'ve got about five/six years of ANSI C and I\'ve kept my C knowledge up, and learnt C++ and Java on my own initiative.  Some of my C code runs the I2E busses on every single queue detection system on every motorway in the UK.  I wrote C right up to 1997, when I got a web programming job, where it wasn\'t practical to use a compiled language so I moved to interpreted ones like PHP/Perl (in a week).  Both are C-form languages, as is Java.  As for Java, well, I\'ve played with it,  and it gives me no problems.  I can write Java quite happily.  I can even write assembler language for a number of chips, including a vicious little RISC Job which was so pipelined that you have to separate comparisons and selective branches with 3 NOPS because it\'s 3 instructions ahead by the time it works out the flags for the conditional.

But do the Recruitment Consultants see it that way?


They haven\'t got a clue as to what composes a modern computer language.  All they see is three or four little letters, and they might as well be Egyptian Heiroglyphics to them, because all they do is match up the little words that appear on the CV with the little words that match up on the requirement.  They haven\'t a clue as to for loops, object inheritence, recursion or subclassing do and they don\'t care. 

I\'ve even been told that my german isn\'t good enough, by someone stuck in a UK office who doesn\'t speak the language, and hasn\'t even tried to test my german....  The fact that I have lived in Cologne for five years and freelanced for 3 years over here doesn\'t seem to be enough evidence to them.  They probably think Cologne is in France.

The second thing that annoys me is that they all act as though their time is absolute gold.  They ring you up and want to speak to you NOW!!  If you have to ring back, they\'re in a meeting, or they\'re on the phone.  They never ring you back.  You have to wait for them, not vice versa.   Well, my time is gold as well, and I\'m damned if I\'m going to waste it on some clueless Nigel from a second-rate public school who got his job through \"contacts\" and labels himself an \"IT Specialist\" just because he knows COBOL is a computer language.

Then there\'s been the obnoxious character who wanted to know details of my personal life because he felt it had a bearing on the job, and the person who told me that I couldn\'t be considered for a particular job in germany because I was over 30.  Funny that.  German employment rules are quite specific about age-based discrimination.  It\'s Illegal.  Still, I suppose that doesn\'t matter when you\'re an experienced sphincter-ventriloquist sitting two countries and a sea away.

In future, all IT recruiters are going to get a hard time from me in the form of the following questionnaire.

Which is NOT a programming language?

  • a) php  
  • b) perl  
  • c) java 
  • d) mySQL

Which of these is not a markup language?

  • a) xml  
  • b) html 
  • c) sgml
  • d) asp

What language do all databases have in common? 

  • a) asp
  • b) PHP
  • c) SQL
  • d) CACI
  • e) ABAP

Which of these is not a methodology?

  • a) CACI
  • b) OOP
  • c) JSD
  • d) C++

Which of these is not a C-form programming language?

  • a) C
  • b) PHP
  • c) Java
  • d) ABAP
  • e) Javascript

Which of these is not capable of object-oriented programming? 

  • a) C
  • b) PHP
  • c) C++
  • d) Java
  • e) Perl

CSS stands for :

  • a) Concurrent Software Standard
  • b) Computer Simulation Software
  • c) Cascading Stylesheet

HTML is to CSS as XML is to

  • a) XP
  • b) SGML
  • c) SQL
  • d) XSLT

If you can get all these answers right, then I might think about talking to you.

Copyright © 2003-2011 Steve Dix