I think it's odd that most recruiters do not seem to know what they essential duties are. Just looking at it quickly one would think that a recruiter's job is to find qualified candidates. In the field of computers this often means looking at buzzwords and matching them up. But it's more than buzzword matching (http://jobscan.co can do that for you). It's really knowing the technologies behind the buzzwords to know that, for example, Jenkins is essentially the same as Electric Commander whereas MySQL is not really at all like MongoDB though they do share the characteristic of both being databases, one uses SQL and the other is No SQL.

I get way too many "offers" by recruiters - typically Indian recruiters - for positions that I would have thought I was not qualified for. For example, the client will say that 3+ years experience with AWS is required and I do not have any AWS experience yet (I've played around with it at home and have taken some online courses but it's clear the client wants 3+ years of actual experience not classroom experience). But the recruiter will contact me nonetheless. Or a recruiter will approach me for a Salesforce developer job. The word Salesforce appeared on my resume once. I helped the Salesforce team integrate into JIRA via a plugin. I configured the plugin and verified that Salesforce was talking to JIRA. I did absolutely nothing in Salesforce itself. I would think that a Salesforce developer would know Salesforce in depth. This is a waste of my time and their time and really a waste of the client's time.

I realize that the recruiter may be thinking "Hey, I'm not sure that this particular guy is totally qualified but I do see Salesforce on his resume. I'll reach out to him and ask questions". Then I would think he email, rather than being just a form email, would be something like this:

Hi, my name is <name>. I saw your resume says you've had some Salesforce exposure but it's not clear to me how much experience you actually have. I have a Salesforce developer position described below. Can you tell me if you have enough experience and if you are comfortable with the job requirements?...

But they don't do that.

I have toyed with the idea of faking experience so as to compel the recruiter to get me an interview and then go in there and simply say "I don't know any of that stuff and I don't know what Mr. Recruiter said I did" just to discredit the recruiter to show their clients that this particular recruiter is not properly screening (or screening at all for that matter). Something needs to be done, IMHO!

Case in point: Working with one Arvind Kumar of Araucaria Technologies, he approached me for an AWS Cloud Engineer position that has the following:


  • 5+ years of progressive experience with large, complex information systems
  • 3+ years of experience provisioning, operating, and managing AWS 3+ environments
  • Vast experience with transitioning physical plant to AWS environments
  • Must have strong LAMP & Tomcat Java experience.
  • Experience in automation and testing via scripting/programming.
  • Strong experience with Ansible. Experience with SVN and Github (preferred)
  • B.S. in Computer Science or equivalent (preferred)

Yet nowhere on my resume would you find 3_ years of AWS experience, nor transitioning physical plant to AWS environment. Have no experience with Ansible, nor SVN or Github. This is not to say I couldn't excel at these technologies as I pick up things quickly. And I do have experience with things like Clearcase, Perforce and git (just not Github or SVN). And I have taken some AWS courses but I would not claim to have 3+ years of experience or even 1 year of experience because my experience is at home, not at a client's site in a production situation.

As a result, why would anybody trust Arvind's word at all? Why would anybody work with Arvind or other recruiters at Araucaria Technologies knowing that their quality control is very sub par?

Recently I found this Tech Recruiter job on DICE. Some of the essential duties include:

  • Identify the client's business and cultural nuances, as well as define the position, its functions, challenges selling points, and viability. Uncover the necessary knowledge, skills and abilities of the ideal candidate.
  • Coordinate with Program Managers and Account Managers to ensure quality delivery to client's requisitions. Work with sales team on account development and account management.
  • Actively market qualified candidates to new and existing clients. Utilize sales techniques to expand business through research and prospecting and turning client inquiries into job requisitions.
  • Assist with the design of a sourcing strategy to uncover both passive and active candidates through existing and new sources in order to maintain an effective pool of candidates. Utilize electronic process in recruiting and placement to maximize efficiency and time saving.
  • Target the most qualified candidates and screen resumes to identify potential matches.
  • Present opportunity to candidate and conduct in-depth interview to determine suitability and interest of candidate. Identify, evaluate, and summarize relevant technical experience, knowledge, hard and soft skills, and abilities in relation to job requirements.
  • Submit qualified candidates and respond to client concerns.

So as you can see recruiters should be qualifying people before emailing candidate who incompetent recruiters such as Arvind obviously have not qualified.

Dealing with Recruiters

Sorry, I guess I need to vent. One of my biggest complaints as of late is so
called "professionalism". You know, you call up some support group and you're
trying to get things straightened out, frustrated from being on hold for 20-30
minutes navigating the voice mail call menus (there are apps to assist for that
so this is not just me!), trying to fix a problem that was basically caused
because company A fucked up and you're now fixing their problem. You utter
something like "Fuck you mean I need to wait for 4-6 weeks for this to be fixed!!!"
and they retort with something like "Sir, please! Be professional". You know what
asshole! Being professional is about actions not words. Your actions were
unprofessional thus causing me strife and frustrating resulting in me blowing
off steam and uttering the word "FUCK", which you've heard a million times before
and you know what is going on here. Look if you were fucking squeaky clean then,
and only then, you might have a point but you don't.

Recruiters are the worse - especially Indian recruiters fresh off the boat! Typical
things that I encounter are things like a recruiter will call me up, apparently
not be able to hear me well (or so they claim) then they hang up. Literally hang
up on me. Do they call me back? No. Do they call and leave a message? No. Can I
call them up? Sometimes. Other times I get a message saying "This Magic Jack
subscriber is not here" or it's a general number and I need to know their
extension. Well I don't know their extension BECAUSE THEY DIDN'T FUCKING BOTHER
TO LEAVE A DAMN MESSAGE! Or I get to their voice mail and their mailbox is full.

Think about this - a business who depends on being able to communicate with
the candidates and they do not have a way to take a fucking message, they do
not have the professional business courtesy to leave a fucking message nor
insure that they can be contacted. They've left a dead end trail. No, I'm not
the fucking unprofessional one - you are.

Then you have things like this Zip Recruiter link,
which sends you to here, which sends you here,
which now requires you to fill out forms. Other places require a login and
even a series of 4-10 pages to "fill out your profile" with an account that
hell I don't even want!

New Banking Partner

Sorry I've been taking my time responding. Truth be told the reason is, although you might not believe me, I don't actually like complaining! I'd much rather have nothing to complain about. But my personality type is also that I will not sit idly by when I have problems I shouldn't have to and/or can see improvements that can be made.

I have been making a list and I've decided to keep it on my server so I can amend and update it as time goes by.

However, the following is something I'd like to have taken care of quickly (it was #4 on my list but that may shift around a bit when I finally publish):

  1. I've had a problem logging into this centresuite.com - a totally separate website to manage my one business credit card. My account had been locked. I called up and complained. I was told that somebody - perhaps you - was supposed to get back to me to resolve the issue. It's been almost 3 weeks now, no followup, no phone calls, no email, nothing!

Basically I've had not been able to log in to that site to pay my business visa. Please fix, contact me or whatever as my next invoice is about to be paid and my plan was to pay that off then.

See "Continued reading" for the real skinny!

Note: You do not want to become like my last bank Wells Fargo

Southbound Silicon Beach

Looks like I'm moving to LA! Or more precisely Marina del Rey. I have a
new contract with ICANN (International Corporation for Assigned Names
and Numbers - the people who hand out internet IPs and DNS). That's
exciting! Silicon Beach as they say. And I'll be closer to San Diego,
my guitar playing and non-guitar playing friends out there. Perhaps
Randal and I can ride share to Mexico on occasion. Shout out to my
friends in Mexico! Hey Ed! You zombie chaser you! And Charles...

Marina del Rey seems to be a wonderful place - right by Venice Beach,
Santa Monica as well as other beach communities. And my new place looks
fantastic with ocean views...

Right by the marina:

My mother always said she envisioned me living by the beach. Well Mom,
this is as close as I've come so far! Miss you Mom! It's the Wild,
Wild West... Doing my best

Everybody take care and have a great summer!

If a recruiter is telling you he's only making like $10-$15/hr above the rate he's offering you then he's probably lying. The industry standard is anywhere from 20-75% markup. This means that for a rate of $90/hr the staffing firm is billing the client anywhere from $108/hr to $150/hr.</>

From http://peopleticker.com/bill-rate

Typical markups range from as low as 20% to 50% or more

From http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/234665

In general, niche markets (e.g., IT) produce higher markups than do traditional staffing markets (e.g., clerical). Veigele notes that occasionally her firm's markup can approach 75 percent for a computer company client.

From http://www.eremedia.com/fordyce/heres-how-to-set-your-contract-staffing-rates/

Once you have an hourly pay rate for the contractor, you can use an average multiplier to calculate the hourly bill rate for the company. The location of the contract assignment can affect what multiplier you use. If you are placing someone in New York the multiplier would be higher than Michigan. Multipliers usually range between 1.5 and 1.8, but they can go much higher for healthcare professionals and hard-to-fill positions.

Our tracking shows that the current average multiplier for technical and professional contract staffing throughout the United States is 1.60. For the past 10 years it has ranged from an average of 1.51 to 1.67. (Excluding healthcare contract placements.)

Note: The multiplier is defined as the quotient of the company bill rate divided by the employee pay rate. A simple example of a 1.5 multiplier would be a scenario where the bill rate is $60 per hour and the pay rate is $40 per hour. The common term for multiplier is also "mark-up."

One to watch out for

Lalaine 7:17 AM
Sent from EXPLORE the BAY
Kindly delete my pic pls

Andrew DeFaria 7:19 AM

OK. Sorry. Didn't mean to "steal your soul"...

Lalaine 7:31 AM

The picture is not a good thing to display buz it looks like I was annoyed with you or with the event, but I was not. I was just caught off guard.

If the pic did not show that kind of expression, then I would not mind nor would I request that you delete it. I wish you had asked my permission first when posting this 'kind' of picture. The concern is, not only it got posted and it's in everyone's emails, which such picture can be misjudged.

Please also ensure to delete every copy of this in your mobile gallery or any postings you've made on other sites (if any...). I trust that you'd respect my wishes. Thank you and have a good day.

Andrew DeFaria 8:14 AM

But you were annoyed at me for taking that picture. That's why you looked that way.

Lalaine 8:31 AM

I was not annoyed. Pls reread my email, I was caught off guard. I did still talk with you even after - remember? Did you see any annoyance in that. You've joined us quite a few times after and I was still talking with you cordially. My attitude did not change. Besides, I did not know that you actually took it cuz I started walking away and did not expect that you would post it either - if you did take it. I assumed wrong. I'm not comfortable when men are taking a 'solo' pic of me and esp a stolen pic. Yeah, it made me so uncomfortable that's why I showed that expression... Hope it does not happen again.

Andrew DeFaria 8:47 AM

What I said was exactly and literally true. You were annoyed at me - for taking that picture. Not you were annoyed at me personally and would never speak to me again. You just didn't like that I took that picture. That's all I was saying. And it was why I still talked to you and hung out with you. I found you "exotic" and lovely which is why I took the picture. I thought you were a bit pouty in the picture but I thought it looked cute nonetheless so I posted it. Sorry it bothered you. I removed it and I can assure you I will take no more pictures of you.

Lalaine 9:51 AM

I was just really uncomfortable. I find it rather odd. See, I had bad experiences from a few men before who stalked me. A while back I had to file unwanted harassment even at work and it all started by men taking a stolen solo pic of me. I'm not saying ur gonna be like that, but I'm traumatized... We can all take pics in a group. Thanks for the compliments. God bless.

Andrew DeFaria 9:55 AM

Thanks for thinking of me as a stalker first before thinking of me as just a nice man. Made me day!

The bitch then proceeded to attempt to get me thrown out of the group. My opinion: Seems like she's has issues and should not be approached. Smells like a Fatal Attraction to me. Beware!

Dealing with recruiters

I get a lot of calls from recruiters. Many are not that professional. Many don't have anything to offer me of worth. How do deal with such people? Here's my system. If you've been redirected here then you've failed the test.

What's the test? Well recruiters work with a script - so I have my own. My first line of defense is to direct them to email me the job requirements. I do this for a few reasons:

  1. To have a record of it

  2. To see if the recruiter is blacklisted

  3. To see if the recruiter is responsive enough to deal with simple instructions

You see I have my own spam filters that I've used for well over a decade now. I filter based on From address. Anybody who is not in my system gets a bounce back message telling the sender how to register with MAPS - my home grown spam filters. If the sender is on my blacklist it means that I have not had good results with this person and thus I will no longer do business with them.

Now most recruiters can't figure out this simple system that quite frankly my 85 year old aunt has no problem with! At first I thought that my bounce back message was being filtered into the recruiter's spam folder. But lately I believe that it's probably in their inbox but unread. If you've ever seen the typical Outlook user they have thousands of messages in their inbox and hundreds of them are unread. So this tells me that if I were to do business with this recruiter and I had say a problem with invoicing or receiving payment I might have my email in their inbox unread for days. I don't do business with people who are unresponsive and effectively are ignoring people. Sorry if you have a workload - I do too. And I manage to manage mine. Learn to manage your own.

If the recruiter figures it out and simply clicks and types in their name to register with MAPS the email will be delivered and I will promptly respond with my standard response asking them to quote me a rate. IFF the rate is acceptable I'll talk with the recruiter.