A Talk With PHP Recruiter Lonnie Brown – Forget About Money & Take Care Of Your Candidates

A Small Intro..

You have all heard of recruitment; we have it in all sphere and The PHP Sphere is no exception to that.

Have you ever had a talk with a recruiter? Are you considering reaching out to a PHP recruiter? Or may be, as a company, you are looking to hire one to fill in your PHP recruitment needs?

Look no further, I bring you The Guy for all these questions and curiosity that you may have!

But all too often, most people also have wrong perceptions about recruiters; as in any job position, there are the right guy and the wrong guy – not all PHP recruiters are that bad. There are some that are making a difference and may be today this interview can show some lights down that tunnel.

I would love to hear your comments and feedbacks after your reading + any questions to Lonnie Brown – I’m sure he will happily respond.

Btw, Cal Evans will be hosting Lonnie Brown this incoming 22th March 2014 for yet another awesome DayCamp4Developers. It’s actually the #9th episode of DC4D and this time the theme is “Manage Your Career“. So I hope this interview comes in at the right time for you to bombard Lonnie with LIVE questions on that day!

Before going further, if you haven’t done so, go tweet a thankful message to Mr Cal Evans (@CalEvans) on Twitter – he’s consistently bringing in a lot of nice Themes with DC4D down the years (and recently with NomadPHP) to help all of us get exposure and knowledge, specially for those (like me) who cannot travel to attend a conference and meet those PHP Rockstars to learn from them. GO TWEET A MESSAGE TO @CalEvans!

And Now Hear It From Lonnie Brown

>> Hi Brown, could you please introduce yourself to my 7PHP readers?

PHP Recruiter Lonnie Brown
PHP Recruiter Lonnie Brown

Absolutely. I am a father of four with 2 bonus monkeys. I have been recruiting in technology for over 17 years. Ranging from MBE crystal growth to semiconductor, and almost every level of software and hardware. I have been focused exclusively on PHP Recruiting and the PHP Community for the past 3 years. The PHP arena is very unique in that it really is a tight knit group of extremely intelligent and talented folks, a true community. I am blessed to be accepted into this community.

>> What types of recruiters are there with respect to a PHP recruiter?

I would say predominantly permanent recruitment mainly, although I did run into a few folks doing it on a contract or temporary basis. Also I would have to add, mainly bad recruiters, and just a handful of good ones.

>> Does PHP recruiting differs with, let’s say, JAVA or Ruby recruiting?

I would say it could be similar, yet different. Again it would come back to the level of involvement with the participants in the community.

>> Is there a difference between a freelance recruiter and a full-time recruiter?

both could be full time recruiters. in my head I think of freelance as someone who works for themselves vs an agency.

>> The code and ethics a recruiter must observe

This is a great question. In my opinion there are several that are non negotiable. Confidentiality, a fair balance of responsibility to the client and your candidate. A total disregard for your own interests including compensation. If someone follows these basics they will do well.

>> Could you tell a bit about how the process of recruitment goes? How do you proceed?

well that would be an entire paper all in itself! it is simply a matter of being involved with the community you would like to recruit out of, and building trust with the folks in it so that you are trusted and known.

>> The responsibilities of a PHP recruiter?

take care of the people in the PHP Community and the clients hiring them. Be accessible and willing to help in any way possible.

>> The challenges that a recruiter faces

getting outside of our comfort zone and participating in the community.

>> Does a PHP recruiter need to have a PHP background or he can be anyone?

I do not believe so, although since being involved in the PHP Community I have actually taken some php development tutorials to better understand what my people work with. It could certainly be an asset.

>> What are the skills and know-how that a recruiter need to have?

I think Curiosity, research ability, and a friendly personality all are very key. Intelligence is nice also.

>> If you have to describe the life of a recruiter?

It can be quite a grind until you find a space you like working in. You will meet a lot of people that say I tried recruiting or used to be a recruiter. But few who are career recruiters.

>> Do you like being a recruiter?

I love what I do, I like to help people. If I can shorten someone’s drive or help them get to the next level in their career. That is why I am a recruiter. there is no better feeling in the world that I can think of.

>> Would you like to share a secret which you acquired with your recruitment experience

yes, forget about money and take care of your candidates and clients. Your needs will be met by doing this as a default.

>> Your good and perhaps not-so-good moments being a PHP recruiter

wow… one of the best moments involved a sub sandwich, a pint of beer in an engine-yard glass, and a robe in a glass elevator at php/tek 2012. lol
that might have been a not so good moment as well, guess it depends on your perspective. I think the photo is out on twitter somewhere.

>> What is your Opinion on PHP and it’s community? How has it evolved down the years, for you?

AMAZING. it continues to involve with the contagious enthusiasm that one feels when attending a community event. I do not see it slowing down any time soon. So ya, AMAZING.

Lonnie Brown & Job seekers

>> As a PHP recruiter, what are the aspects and things that you look for when recruiting a PHP guy

I like to look at their code repository such as github. See and talk about what they have worked on and how they solve challenges. See what involvement they have with the community and also the stuff they work on in their spare time.

>> What is your advice to someone looking for a job, to maximize his chances of getting that job

call me for interview prep! do your homework on the company, ask intelligent questions. Show case your skill set and ability to learn. ask for the job if you want it.

>> What is the advantage of a job seeker liaising with a recruiter to find a job?

this again could be an entire paper. There is a virtual daycamp for developers in March where I will be covering this in a talk in detail. subscribe and I will see you there!

>> For the job seekers or PHP talents out there, what is your advice to them so that they can discern which recruiter is genuine and not just doing it for the job.

If you do not see them at your usergroup, conference, or in your IRC Chatroom. You may want to find someone who is.

>> What would be your valuable career advice to job seekers.

lets talk! : )

>> You know this guy (looking for that job) is “the one for it” when.. (complete the sentence)

i finish speaking to him and his experience, soft skills, and goals line up with the clients needs and offerings.

>> Would you like to share a secret which could be useful to a job seeker

call the hiring manager directly : )

Lonnie Brown & Recruiters

>> Your advice for someone who wants to become a good recruiter?

see above answer regarding clients and candidate and ignoring your needs. also the answer regarding getting involved with the community.

>> Pitfalls of being a recruiter

you need two sales for every deal. if you just want to sell things pick something other than people.

>> You know a job seeker is lying when.. (complete the sentence)

they speak? oh no that is recruiters. After 17 years I just know, my friends refer to me as the human lie detector.

>> Is “being a PHP recruiter” still lucrative?

If done right, absolutely.

>> Your message to the other recruiters out there

do your research, do not mass email, and go get involved in the community.

>> A good recruiter is “the one who see the candidate’s full potential” – how is this true?

Because that is how you get them into a stretch position where they can learn and grow. It takes intuition and thought to see this in someone and communicate to the client in a way they will be receptive.

Lonnie Brown & Some Issues Mentioned ‘here and there’ On The Web

>> “The problem with many recruiters is that they simply don’t pay any attention to the desires of candidates” REF: http://java.dzone.com/articles/why-tech-recruiters-suck-and

agreed, it is a common problem. I wrote an article for a past employer explaining why this is, but it got censored and I almost got fired. lol it will be back up soon or you are doing it all wrong.

>> Recruiters are infamous for lying to candidates about their clients, salary ranges, job responsibilities, etc REF: http://java.dzone.com/articles/why-tech-recruiters-suck-and


>> Recruiters are bad for your career – brandon savage – http://www.brandonsavage.net/why-recruiters-are-bad-for-your-career/

Familiar with this one, and Brandon and I have actually discussed it. We have yet to meet in person, so not sure if I can change his mind on this. I will keep you posted as I am sure we will meet this year!

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