Get Super Specialized: Sourcing For a Start-Up

12 11 2008

I am establishing a new high tech consulting company called eLumenotion, LLC.  The focus will be on SharePoint Training and Consulting.  So with times like they are right now, how can one make it happen with a high tech start up?

When you want to start up a new company….you don’t want just any kind of people, right?  You want great people!  Well, here I am trying to build something special here at eLumenotion, LLC.  But before getting started on this new company the following question came up:  Aside from closing business, how do you effectively source people for a start up?  And remember; don’t forget the backdrop where you have these macro-economic events taking place.

Well, let’s take a step back for a second.  Let’s first consider our industry: recruiting.  Recruiting plays such a key role in our economy.  We provide a service.  We serve people by helping them get jobs.  I personally love it when I have brokered a deal for a job seeker to get a new job. Think about it.  Someone actually landed a job that is meaningful and rewarding.  But as you look at the recruiting industry, there is a variety of specialties once you peel back the outer layer. 

In the recruiting industry, you can find many types of recruiters.  There are recruiters in high tech, healthcare, manufacturing, distribution, and legal services…just to name a few.  Dive further.  There are corporate recruiters, independent contract recruiters, and staffing agency recruiters.  Dive even further.  You can find a breakdown of the recruiting function to different areas of specialization.  You can find researchers, sourcers, and account/relationship managers…just to name a few.  Now, there are accomplished full life cycle recruiting pros out there who serve much of the market quite well.  Yet, there are certain times it’s hard to be all things to all people.  I am not saying by any means it can’t be done.  It’s just that there are situations (perhaps due to scope, time/deadlines, scale, geographies, locations, roles, or specialities) where it makes sense to breakdown the full life cycle in to these dedicated areas of specialties. 

The same goes for recruiting in the high tech industry.  There are many players in the high-tech industry.  There are so many companies.  For example, let’s dive into firms that specialize in hardware and software.  For the sake of discussion, major ones that come to mind are Microsoft, Oracle, SAP, Sun, Cisco, Nortel, HP, IBM and Dell.  It’s a steep challenge to be a generalist recruiter and cover all of these effectively.  You may very well end up being a ‘jack of all trades and a master of none’. 

Solution: Consider narrowing your area of focus.  Pick a niche (or product stack) and make it your area of specialization!  Pick a company, such as Cisco, SAP, or Microsoft, and make it your speciality.  If you are scared or unsure on where to focus, then pick two:  a major and a minor.  And see how that goes for you.  Doing so will truly enhance your network and success.  I would like to call this being a Super Specialized Recruiter.  No, it’s not like being super sized when you go to McDonald’s.  J  I am saying let’s super specialize your career!  Have a laser focus in one company or product stack. 

Being a super specialized recruiter has many benefits.  The top three benefits are:

 

  1. You will develop a deeper understanding of the technology.  In turn, that gives you instant cred when you talk to candidates!  Candidates like it when they are talking to a recruiter who actually knows what s/he is talking about! 
  2. You will have a deeper, richer and more meaningful network.  Yes, it’s nice to leverage tools on line to research and source, but a personal relationship with someone can’t be beat.  Don’t forget, not all people use LinkedIn, Spoke, Twitter and Facebook every day.  There is a passive, hidden community out there.
  3. You will be more successful, be more efficient, and make more money.  You will turn around job requisitions much faster.  No OJT (on the job training) trying to cover requisitions in Cisco, HP, Sun and SAP all at the same time.  When you pick a niche, you can step in and hit requisitions with a running start. 

Allow me to share something.  Personally, I have recruited for Microsoft Gold Partners for nearly 12 years now.  Having developed throughout the years a network rich in Microsoft talent, this being my personal area of speciality, will enable eLumenotion, LLC to have a highly successful recruiting function. 

Yes, these are tough times.  However, turn lemons into lemonade.  Turn a negative into a positive.  Leverage your gift of networking by helping people in your area of speciality get back on their feet.  Treat others as you would like to be treated.  The Golden Rule – an oldie but a goodie.  At a time when people may be struggling, hurting or feel like they need lifeline, you can help!  It is a noble and honourable gesture.  It’s the right thing to do.  And people will remember you for that.

The recruiting industry plays a key role in our American economy, here in the greatest country in the world.  And your reputation as a recruiting professional is everything.  Helping others, in good times and in bad, will be remembered.  They will remember you helping them out of a ditch.  I have many stories I can share from the crash of 2001.  Helping each other and serving each other matters.  It’s true. And I stand by that. 

So there we go.  Inventory your skills and gifts.  Then consider leveraging all of that in a particular product stack or niche by getting super specialized.  You will be glad you did. 

 

dal-cerro-michael-picNicknamed “Michael D”, Michael Dal Cerro has over 12 years of experience in the technology and management consulting industry, 10 of which primarily focused on the recruitment of human capital. His responsibilities have spanned across full lifecycle recruitment, employment branding, college relations, affiliate management and vendor relations. 

 

Based in Atlanta, Georgia, eLumenotion, LLC is a consulting boutique specialized in SharePoint Training and Consulting. The firm has been enlisted by Microsoft to help train Microsoft Partners on the implementation and customization of the SharePoint platform.

 








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