Stephen Walsh, a recent member of Client Server's trainee scheme, talks about switching into tech recruitment after six years of doing construction recruitment.
What were you doing before Client Server?
I've been in recruitment for 10 years, ever since I left college. The last six years I was doing construction recruitment, mostly in the Irish and the European markets.
Why did you switch into tech recruitment?
I grew up using the internet as a way to meet people. Tech is something I've always used in my day to day life ever since I was kid. It's a massive hobby for me. So how I didn't end up in tech sooner is a bit of a strange one. When Client Server reached out to me, I was looking for a new challenge and another construction role just wasn’t for me.
Some people might not like to blend their hobbies and work, but I think this one's a pretty good mix.
Why did Client Server appeal to you?
I got a pretty good feeling from the guy that became my team lead. I thought “Why would I muddy the waters by meeting five more recruitment companies?” If I get a pretty good feeling, I will go with it and it's worked out pretty well.
Has tech recruitment delivery been different from construction recruitment?
Definitely. In the construction industry, conversations with candidates can sometimes be four to five minutes long. Whereas in tech, these guys are definitely more interested in talking about what they do. Some of them like being technical tested because they like to show off their knowledge and the projects they have worked on. You feel like you are doing more recruitment and less matching tier one main contractors to tier one main contractors and basically just swapping people from a competitor to competitor. You have to dig a lot deeper into what technical people are doing, what they actually want, so it's pretty interesting.
How have you found things here at Client Server?
Really good. Everyone's really welcoming. Considering I have 10 years’ experience, you'd think I'd be happy to just pick up the phone and start talking to candidates. But when you're changing into a new industry and calling someone you don't actually have any knowledge about what they do, it can be quite jarring. At Client Server, you're given time to acclimatise. Rather than just one person giving you a week's worth of training, you've got four or five people's different recipes for how they do it. And then you are given the tools to build your own one as you go along.
What are your long-term goals here at Client Server?
Currently, I'm managing my first account, so I’m keen to do more of that. Working with all these cool projects across Europe is fascinating and satisfying so far.
Do you have any advice for anyone who are thinking about jumping into tech recruitment?
The advice I would give is if you are a tech savvy person that enjoys tech, enjoys the world of tech, and you're in construction or healthcare or education, you're going to enjoy this a lot more.