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Tech Recruitment Mistakes - Amazing People Apply Directly

Tech Recruitment Mistakes - Amazing People Apply Directly

Over the course of the next few weeks, I will be writing several articles to help support and coach my clients and businesses alike with what I have seen as the most common mistakes when it comes to tech recruitment. This can be transferable to other markets/industries I guess but as I have been only working in the tech space for the last 10+ years I cannot guarantee all of these mistakes are the same in other areas.

I am the co-founder of up a start-up technical talent search business called DigiTech Search supporting people to secure their dream opportunities & help drive the growth & digital capabilities of businesses all over Europe. We have been a finalist as a new business of the year in the Business Excellence Awards in the UK this year and I have personally supported organizations such as eBay, PayPal, 1&1 Internet, Klarna, Zalando & GroupON in their hiring activities over the last decade or so. In this time I have seen many thinking & action mistakes of businesses when it comes to tech recruitment I have outlined the 7 most common ones that I thought I would share here to help to avoid these pitfalls. Also, I am releasing a book next year called Remarkable Tech Recruitment which uncovers more of these areas.

So, let's jump straight in and outline the mistakes;

  1. Amazing people apply directly
  2. We have plenty of time
  3. HR should do ALL the recruitment
  4. I can do this myself
  5. Working with agencies is too expensive
  6. My job advert is enough
  7. I don't have time for recruitment

In this section, we will look at

1) Amazing people apply directly.

Thinking Mistake;

A lot of business leaders have a perception when it comes to their business which of course is going to be biased that they often feel that their company is an amazing place to work and more people should just apply directly. The truth is, unless you are one of the well- known brands in tech like Google, Facebook, Amazon, etc then you just won't get the same level of applications and you have to work a hell of a lot harder to get to that level & to get noticed.

Action Mistake;

With this in mind, the business owners typically follow the traditional route of trying to get people to apply directly and make a very jazzy careers page on the website along with the open job position and do not do anything else and then expect the applications to start flooding in. The reality is you may get the odd one or two apply but more realistically they just don't.


Today’s tech job landscape is a very competitive one where every company wants the next best engineer & is jostling for position as an 'awesome place to work'. If you are not vocal about your business or reaching out to people directly you will not attract people or start to create a buzz about your business. Good people don't always look for new jobs, they like to read, watch, listen & get a feeling of your business first through multiple channels before even considering it and then they LIKE to be found, or approached. If you are not doing this then fewer & fewer people will be aware of your business until the applications ultimately grind to a halt.

Why its a mistake; 

Many leaders think that their business is already an attractive place to work and good enough that people should be looking at them and applying directly so they don’t actively work on their brand in the recruitment market and only post jobs on their website. As a result, their business misses out on opportunities to secure the best people who are passive in the market which then makes their recruitment feel harder with more struggle.


Your business is probably a great place to work but no-one knows about it unless your business is already really well-known. It’s worth investing time into creating a buzz around your business and there are plenty of ways to do it. Here some of the ideas we would suggest;

  1. People are often using platforms like glassdoor to get a feeling of your business before applying - ask your existing employees to write a short review of what it’s like to work there. As these are anonymous they can feel confident they can write honest feedback. If you are as great as you think you are these will help promote your business, if some of them are below what you expect it can also give you a true reflection on things you can do in the business to address and improve to make it even better. 
  2. Get your content out there, share videos on the workplace, share your ideas, team events, publish articles on LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook. This helps create a buzz about your business and enables many people to connect with your business first before they might consider applying. 
  3. Hold meet-ups, use your office space to get involved in the community, let people come in and see what you are about. This gives people a first-hand look at your environment and without trying to sell your jobs to them you are subconsciously giving them the opportunity to enquire & get interested in you

These small changes can really make the difference to help you attract more people to the business & to get your name out there in the tech community.

Up next week.... 2. We have plenty of time

By Paul Turner - Co-Founder / Director


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