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In any company there are two engines for continued growth of a company: sales and recruiting. Sales ensure your business has customers to service, and recruiters ensure your company has the right people to help the company grow.

The sales team usually has little, if any, exposure to the IT team. The recruiter, however, is a different story.

You want the recruiter on your side. You need the recruiter on your side. You need solid candidates, and you want the recruiter to know exactly which skill sets your IT team needs.

So here’s a few ways to develop a relationship:

  1. Meet often. There is no substitute for face-to-face meetings. Meeting often will immediately boost your relationship with virtually anyone, including a recruiter. Face-to-face meetings build familiarity, which boosts confidence. It also allows for more effective communication than phone or email, as the communication channels are richer.
  2. Feedback is priceless. It goes both ways, but a recruiter needs to know how the last new employee worked out; what went well, what didn’t go well, and what could have been communicated more effectively. The best way to offer feedback is to be open about receiving feedback as well.  Candid communication can be tough, but it pays.
  3. Integrate your recruiter. He or she should be a part of the team, not out in left field. Not everything involves them, but they should have an operational feel for exactly what you’re looking for and what your office needs. (Especially mindset!) In some cases, they already know from past experience, but in many cases the integration never happens, hindering the ability to nab the ideal candidate.
  4. Learn about recruiting. This is imperative to have at least some appreciation of what recruiters do on a daily basis. When you learn what they do, even without understanding all the intricate details, it affords you an insight into their struggles and helps you appreciate their occupation. Recruiting is considerably more than surfing LinkedIn and making a few calls, contrary to popular belief.

Building a lasting relationship with your recruiter provides considerable benefits, and helps both of your jobs run more smoothly. If you’re having trouble finding qualified candidates, try the aforementioned and it will improve your relationship.

At The Armada Group, we understand these needs, and we put them into action when we work with you. We gain an understanding of your business needs and we have an enormous talent pool of elite IT talent.  We are recruiters who understand the tech market, and we want to deliver on-demand talent solutions to your team. If you are looking for recruiters in Santa Cruz, contact us today.


Businesses make or lose money by image. And that image costs a significant amount of money to create and maintain using branding.

And it works. Brilliantly.

So, don’t reinvent the wheel; brand yourself as a candidate if you’re on the hunt. And, as an IT professional, what better way than to do so using social media? (HINT: there isn’t one) Here are a few tips to help you along the way:

  • Keep your LinkedIn profile clean and polished. This is likely to be the first site a recruiter will check. Also, make sure it includes keywords a recruiter will be likely to search for. In this case, it’s perfectly acceptable to use some tech jargon as long as there’s still plain English somewhere in there.
  • Clean up your Facebook, especially any crazy college years. No future employer wants to see a picture of you performing keg stands just a few short years ago. This also applies to lewd memes or profanity.
  • Don’t appear desperate. Maybe I’m judgmental, but when I see a name like “Joe Looking For Work Smith” on LinkedIn, it’s not good, and certainly not professional. I would probably – no, definitely – veto that candidate immediately. Clean and polished.
  • Create a video. Ever see a video on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter? Exactly. They’re becoming more and more popular; this is one way you can certainly stand out. Embed it into your media presence, or create a YouTube video with a link in your profile.
  • Participate on IT specific forums, and demonstrate your subject matter expertise. It should go without saying to use the same sort of language and tone that one would use in an office setting.
  • Contribute to open source projects. There are TONS out there, and while this looks good on a resume anyway as experience, it allows you to interact within a community that may know someone. IT is a huge small world.
  • Let people know you’re looking. But, as we mentioned above, don’t be obnoxious about it. There are times to be direct, and times to be subtle – your relationship with the person you’re talking to will be a defining factor. A periodic update letting your connections, followers or friends know that you have a lot to offer helps, too.
  • Be positive, and be confident. It can be difficult for unemployed candidates to stay positive – but it’s necessary. The technology world has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation.

If you’re unemployed, we’re here to help you. At the Armada Group, we maintain a wide variety of world class talent with skills just like yours. We also work with some of the largest and fastest growing companies in the world, and we want to help you find the right career opportunity. If you are looking software developer jobs in Silicon Valley, contact our team today.

For some reason, the IT industry places a different emphasis on certifications than other industries. Perchance it’s because there are so many “self-taught” IT professionals who understand the subject matter but never set foot in college. Or perhaps it’s because IT is such a wide vertical that even a degree can’t teach you everything. Whatever the case, there’s no doubt that certifications provide one of the best measures of demonstrating subject matter expertise.

With that in mind, your career path will help determine which certifications are right for you. Here are some of Microsoft’s certifications to help advance your career:

MTA, or Microsoft Technology Associate, is the most basic MS certification, and usually entails an entry-level (if even that) understanding of the subject matter. The MTA is presently offered in Server, Desktop, Database, and Developer categories. The MTA by itself will not likely land you a job, but it may help familiarize you if you’re new to the field.

MCSA (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate) is a more common “entry-level” certificate and proves a solid understanding of the fundamentals. This is widely accepted as the standard in beginning an IT career, and is offered in servers (Windows Servers 2008 and 2012) desktop, (Windows 7 and 8) applications and database roles.

After the MCSA is the MCSE (or MCSD for developers) which is a notch above, and is the pinnacle of Microsoft’s certifications since the retirement of MCM/MCSM/MCA programs at the first of the year. The Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert certification is for the elite, and requires documented hands-on experience – as well as the MCSA – prior to testing. Servers, databases, and developers (MCSD) all have this as an option.

The Microsoft Office Specialist and MOS Expert are unique to the applications field. The MOS is the base; while MCSA is the middle and MOS (Expert) is at the top.

When examining credentials, the most important factor to consider is “where will this take me, and is it worth the time, effort, and cost?” The best way to discern the above is to plan out a career path with where you want to be, and then ascertain which certifications will get you there.

This is when talking to a staffing agency becomes the logical next step. At The Armada Group, we know what certifications are important, and as we deal with many different talents, we can help you in terms of finding the right career opportunity for you. We work with some of the most innovative and fastest-growing companies in the world, and we want to help you find the opportunities you’re looking for, and develop the experience along the way. If you are looking for technical employment in Silicon Valley, contact our team today.