CASE STUDY - TECHNICAL SWITCHBACK
Technical Director. That was his current title. It used to be, well, whatever: Senior Architect, Technical Leader, Consulting Software Engineer... What were once intense days spent jousting with deliciously complicated technical problems, and engaging with other top-notch developers on how best to solve them, had become travel-filled days discussing and deliberating about product futures and industry trends with customers, partners and analysts.
Certainly he had learned a lot over the past year and a half, and was grateful for that. But his brain pined for the intellectual challenge, and his hands itched to get back on the code.
Decision: time for a switchback to the technical track. But he agonized over a number of issues. He traveled a lot. How would he find the time to job search? He had not coded in a good while, and was earning the most he'd ever earned. How would he position himself for a strong offer in the super-speed software engineering market when he couldn't demonstrate recent coding successes?
Since he had worked for previous employers for long tenures, and had been hired mostly by people who knew him, he was very inexperienced at cold interviewing. More pointedly, he had no taste for the task of selling himself.
He had worked with a few recruiters before, and had found the experiences unpleasant. They didn't get what he did: his knowledge base, skill set, the uniqueness of his technical accomplishments. And they didn't take time to learn, or build a relationship with him. Their contacts in companies resided at low levels, and they seemed to wield little or no influence with hiring parties. They sent his resume out without permission. Their recommendations were mostly off the mark, and they pushed him to agree to interviews and offers without regard to whether or not they suited his needs.
He shunned the online recruitment services; as he had heard stories about bosses reading resumes of their current employers. And he felt he could benefit from strong personal representation.
In short, he felt daunted at having to approach his most important career move since his first job without the kind of help he most wanted, and which he assumed didn't exist.
Then a colleague of his told him about EGS Elite.
Our client felt comfortable pretty quickly when he could see our knowledge of the industry, our high-level contacts and our unique operating style. He was pleased we offered to give him as many references as he gave us, and thrilled to know to the detail what we would do for him and how we would do it. He had never seen a recruitment model like this before, and immediately warmed to it.
Our initial talks with him posed for us an important question: how many top-level software engineers/architects are able to spend a year and a half talking to customers, competitors and industry watchers about technical issues, and then apply that knowledge to product planning and architecture? This alone separated him from most of his technical peers.
With our ensuing interviews of him, our extensive reference checking, and our further research, we were able to combine that initial instinct for positioning him with some impressive hard data and a compelling aggregate of positive feedback from other technically strong sources. For example, we discovered a designation he had won at a former employer, one of the large computer companies, was awarded to only 2 % of the massive engineering organization he had worked within. And every one of his references placed him within the top 3-5 engineers technically they had ever worked with.
To cap it off, the Technical Consultant who performed the EGS Elite Technical Audit concluded "He would rise to the top in any company that values technical leadership and innovation."
We were more than pleased to offer this client our personal representation. And hearing how our methodology resulted in having many knowledgeable voices sell his special capabilities articulately in a 4-page Client Report - while including a fair assessment of his improvement needs, which underscored our credibility - eased his mind considerably. Shortly we presented him with the summary of how we would be positioning him, and a long list of target companies for him to approve.
We worked tirelessly contacting those targets, mostly at the C-level and VP-level, and developed for our client a sizable set of interviews. From the initial interview feedback, we were able to coach him to improve his interview skills.
At the end of the process, our client received multiple offers - one of which was from a company we all found to be an ideal fit - and significantly more money from his package than he had expected. He told us he had never had such a pleasurable job change before.
And the CEO of that company called us and said something like, "I've never seen such a thorough, knowledgeable report on any candidate from any recruitment firm at any level. I'd like you to call me personally and let me know of your new clients as you get them, whether or not we have any formal job reqs."
Five years and multiple raises later, that client is still happy with the company where we placed him.