Here's a tip for you.

I know that recruiting is tough right now. Really tough. We're trying to hire a lot of people at Yahoo, and it's slow going. Everyone I talk to is having trouble finding good engineers.

So when you decide to cold-call people to find out if they're interesting in changing jobs (especially software engineering), you just might want to avoid doing to AT 6:50am!!!

Seriously. WTF?!

How many software engineers do you know who are interested in having a discussion with a recruiter before 10am? This is particularly inexcusable when you're calling from the same time zone (based on the area code that caller id showed for you).

I'm still in shock, 15 minutes later.

Posted by jzawodn at February 28, 2007 07:05 AM

Reader Comments
# Johannes said:

Good morning, Jeremy :-)

on February 28, 2007 07:18 AM
# andrew said:

So... did ya take the gig?


on February 28, 2007 07:40 AM
# Michael Hessling said:

Well, you're up now.

on February 28, 2007 07:58 AM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

I was already up. But that's not to say I was coherent enough to speak to a recruiter.

on February 28, 2007 07:59 AM
# Tim A said:

Just goes to show you how in tune these recruiters are with their market.

on February 28, 2007 08:13 AM
# Joe Dolson said:

Well, that would be reason enough for me not to consider the job, even if I'd been inclined to look for a new job in the first place...

on February 28, 2007 08:16 AM
# Brian Vuyk said:

Seeing as I am in the middle of a job search myself (Java Programmer, SEO, Web Applicatons Development), I personally would love to get a call at any time of day, even at 3:00 AM.

Count your blessings, Jeremy, that you are in a good job with a good name where you can afford to be picky about when you talk to recruiters.

Feel free to pass on any recruiters you don't want to speak to!

on February 28, 2007 08:40 AM
# Laura Lemay said:

The recruiter may not have actually been in the same time zone. When I was looking for a job I got a lot of recruiters calling from phone banks -- the caller ID indicated that they were calling locally -- but based on their incredibly poor knowledge of bay area goegraphy (they were trying to place me for jobs 80+ miles away), it was obvious they were Not From These Parts.

Still, you'd think they would make an effort.

on February 28, 2007 09:21 AM
# Dave Dash said:

Apparently PHP developers are in hot demand now... I get calls constantly and usually I don't mind them, but also none of them are really all that interesting, "I'm so and so from Rapid Innovative Technological Solutions and we have an urgent request from our top client and they need someone with PHP and Perl and Java experience and you have those skills, I think you'll be really thrilled.. what do you say, send me your resume?"

And then this week I got a call on a Sunday. Sure, I actually work sundays on my side projects, but I don't want a cold call on a Sunday... I mgiht sing a different tune if I didn't get any calls ever and was out of work... but that's not the case... the market is up... it seems.

Brian - try Dice and Jobster... or heck, just email me (there's a form on my web site) and I'll gladly pass you off to other recruiters.

on February 28, 2007 09:26 AM
# Don MacAskill said:


And there are other species of cold-callers that deserve a little public shame for 6am calls too, like VARs trying to sell you server hardware, or banks trying to sell you financing.

I love it when they open with "is this a good time?". :)

on February 28, 2007 09:32 AM
# Aaron Brazell said:

My pet peeve is people Skyping me, not introducing themselves, and asking for work - mostly from other countries and possessing poor english and written skills. Fortunately, I don't get too many recruiters these days.

on February 28, 2007 10:07 AM
# Michelle Hedstrom said:

When I get calls like this, from people I obviously don't know, and really don't want to talk to, I'll actually ask them where they're calling from, remind them not everyone is in their time zone and to please do the math, and hang up.

on February 28, 2007 04:47 PM
# john said:

It's probably a time zone mishap, but the reason recruiters call early or late is so that the call is outside of typical business hours; they think they might get a chance to talk to you in relative privacy.

on February 28, 2007 05:35 PM
# Domas Mituzas said:

Well, I once thought the guy was living on east coast, when he was living in west coast. Me being in Europe, I was quite embarrassed ;-) The good part was that I was already holding email conversation and he was awake, so it turned all well.

We should just all move to some pole, where you could call whole day-round. And would have other part of year calls-free. ;-)

on March 1, 2007 01:19 AM
# James said:


Technical recruiter.

Phoning before 10AM!

Do they KNOW what technical people tend to do laaaate into the evening? Not sleep, I can tell you that from experience. ;-)

on March 1, 2007 09:31 AM
# Chris "Silver" Smith said:

Unbelievable! Terribly rude of a recruiter to call at that time.

Something worse I had happen last year: I agreed to an interview with a major internet company in Seattle, and I took off from work to go home for the interview (I live close to work). I wait until 20 minutes after the scheduled time, and then phone the company's HR rep that had scheduled the interview between me and the hiring manager. "Oh, he had something come up. We'll have to reschedule."


I took off time from work to talk to them, and they didn't even have the common decency to contact me to let me know the time wouldn't work?!?

Two weeks later, we'd rescheduled with a different hiring supervisor. I take off from work again, go home, wait by the phone. This time they call, but he promptly tells me they were instead going to interview me for a position that's completely different from the one I was originally applying for. WTF? It was nearly like a bait-and-switch. I told them no deal and I went back to work.

Hiring agents sometimes get into the mode of treating applicants like cattle.

on March 1, 2007 10:20 AM
# Rae said:

>>>I was already up

Pffft. What kind of computer geek are you? Up at 6:50? How do you do that with the all night surf and code sessions? LOL.

on March 4, 2007 04:11 PM
# Luke Welling said:

It was a secret aptitude test. If you sounded like you were already up and coherent, then they know you are not going to be "a good cultural fit" and are just pretending to be a geek.

on March 5, 2007 02:49 AM
# Hasan Diwan said:

Perhaps Mr. Zawodny was still awake from his late night coding sesesions?

on March 12, 2007 01:37 PM
# jbl said:


Hi. I'm am a recruiter:D. I like my job. I speak to technical folks on client/candidate side on a regular basis. And when it's a good relationship, you land a job, client has a hire it needed, and i earn a living doing what i do well. Jobs. And technology suspiciously seems to be the industry for me.

I tend to take care of follow up emails & mtgs in the 830-10am time frame. This includes making sure that the positions I am calling on are from clients that are serious about hiring. Sometimes this process takes time. I also scan the boards. If Jobster found an audience, I think it could be something to watch... I call candidates I'd like to touch base with.

On a different note - please note that there are many staffing firms out there. These staffing firms preach and practice different recruiting styles. Maybe some companies think that more time spent making calls will yield greater results - the whole noodles on the wall logic. I've worked for one of these before. There are good people that work in these companies, too, there is a logic to their madness. Not for everyone though, so there ya go. So you see, it's a matter of knowing/liking/trusting the person you work with and company she/he represents. And also if you like the types of clients they work with.

Anyway, I digress.

After 10am is understandable. I think 930 really isn't that bad either.

on March 21, 2007 10:52 PM
# said:

Technical recruiters shouldn't try to badger applicants - i have had recruiters badger me into applying for a job...when its a contract position and i tell them - dudes im not interested in contracts....they keep after me ... whats the harm in about 'No i dont want to!'
And if you have ever received an email saying 'HeLLO! i have an urgent need for bla bla bla' in shocking red font...then, if you are like me, them automatically go into spam.

on December 15, 2009 03:07 PM
# said:

Also....Have you ever had 5 different people call you about the same position from the same organization and go through their spiel of 'our client whose name i cannot disclose'.
I basically just guessed the name coz they called so many times...for contract work again - and technical recruiters - Please don't ask things like the following conversation here:
Recruiter: 'Do you know mvc?'
Me: 'yes..bla bla'
Recruiter: 'Do you know Rails'?
Me: 'What?'
Recruiter: Rails.
Me: Rails is mvc...yes i know it, worked it with..bla bla
Recruiter: Do you know Ruby?
Me (mentally) 'WTF ...recruiters please know your stuff!'

Thank you.

on December 15, 2009 03:15 PM
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