Finding Tech Talent in Canada while 350,000 move to Silicon Valley

Did you know that more than 350,000 Canadians currently live in Silicon Valley?

Let’s face it – it has become extremely difficult to find tech talent in Canada. Many of these bright, young stars are moving South of the border to find employment and Canada has been losing a lot of talent as a result.

Is there anything employers can do to attain any of this talent? There are a few key steps that employers can take attract top tech talent on home soil:

Increase your Reach by Engaging with Local Recruiters – Since tech talent is extremely difficult to find, employers will likely have to expand their search outside of their city. Unfortunately, many employers do not have a reach outside of their local community. This is where recruiters can help organizations find the right people with the right skills. Local recruiters who specialize in tech know market expectations better than employers do and know exactly where to find the talent. Ahoy Employ helps employers find the right recruiters who have a close relationship with talent in tech, on their “nose on the ground.”

Invest Locally and Hire New Graduates – Employers start looking for talent as soon as they have a problem or need that they are not able to solve on their own. Many employers often overlook recent graduates – they want to hire people who can solve their problems right away without having to be trained. Recent graduates have an enthusiastic attitude, dedication toward continuous learning, lower pay expectations, and are known for being “digital natives”.  In addition, training costs can be subsidized by the government through grants like the Canada-Alberta Job Grant. Employers should seek to anticipate future needs so that they are able snatch up young talent before their competitors do.

Access the Gig Economy – The concept of a sharing economy has been around for centuries, but it has grown in popularity over the last years. Individuals in the tech industry are keen to use the Gig Economy because it offers them certain flexibility that traditional working environments do not. The Gig Economy allows contractors to have flexible working hours, flexibility regarding location, and flexibility regarding the projects they take on. One report found that 35% of the entire United States workforce utilized the Gig Economy and are working as freelancers.

The tech industry is booming! Are you getting the tech talent you need, right now? If not, Ahoy Employ  can match you with verified, independent recruiters who are deeply connected in the industry in North America, so you can implement your software and database projected properly, right away.

Ahoy Employ is the easiest way for employers to post vacancies and invite the most reputable recruiter in the industry to find top candidates. This is how it works.

Luke Gass, Founder of Ahoy Employ
Barbara Leist, Business Analyst at Ahoy Employ

Top 5 Qualities Recruiters Simply MUST Have

Employers want to be sure they are working with a recruiter who has a powerful network and track record of professionalism in sourcing the right candidates.

Although there are many qualities employers would like recruiters to have, here are some of the top characteristics employers are looking for in recruiters:

Confidence – Confidence is a quality that will benefit both the employer and recruiter. Having a discreet sense of self-assurance will show both employers and candidates that you are sure of your skills and abilities. People are attracted to work with individuals who are sure of themselves.

Communication – This is perhaps one of the most important characteristics to keep both employers and candidates happy. Employers want to know that there is progress and what they can expect, by when. Recruiters should always clarify any questions they have about the job requirements before selecting candidates to ensure they are providing candidates that the employer will appreciate. Likewise, recruiters should inform candidates of the status of their applications.

Friendliness – Recruiters sometimes have a reputation for not being friendly to candidates, and even employers. Even though employers can make numerous demands that could make it difficult to find a candidate within a reasonable time frame, it is important to remember that they are likely under pressure from their management to fill the role ASAP. Ensure that your responses are thoughtful and respectful.

Good listeners – Employers are often frustrated by recruiters submitting candidate profiles that are obviously not a great fit, or don’t even satisfy the minimum requirements. They feel the recruiter simply has listened. When employers are emailing or speaking to you, ensure that you are listening actively before responding – and take notes! It is important to understand their needs so that you are better able to find a candidate that certainly will fit the bill.

Focused – Employers also want recruiters who are focused on their goals and what the employer wants them to accomplish. Make sure that you have the time and resources you need to fulfill what their needs. Don’t waste their time,  and rather work diligently towards the goals that have been set by both you and the employer.

Implementing these five characteristics is a great way to kick-start your recruiting career and really impress employers to build a long lasting relationship that leads to referrals.

Are you a recruiter looking wanting to attract more qualified leads? Check out our website and see how employers invite you to fill their open vacancies in niche industries!

Ahoy Employ is the easiest way for employers to post vacancies and invite the most reputable recruiter in the industry to find top candidates. This is how it works.

Luke Gass, Founder of Ahoy Employ
Barbara Leist, Business Analyst at Ahoy Employ

Reference Check – A Qualified “Double Check”

For recruiters, submitting qualified candidates for the hiring manager to choose from is no easy task.

How do you determine which candidates are the best candidates to send to employers?

Easy – do a reference check!

If only it was that easy. Reference checks are tricky, but they are necessary. Employers are relying on you to get highly qualified candidates that are an absolutely perfect fit for the position and the company.

If a company makes a bad hire, it can cost them a lot of money in training and administration if the employee will be terminated, and waste time and managers’ resources. On the other hand, if employers make a good hire based on the candidates you provide, they’re more likely to refer new business to you.

Make sure you are getting a great reference with the following tips:

Confirmation – Speaking with references suggested by the candidate confirm whether their resume and personal representation is accurate. When you reach out to references via a phone call, you are able to confirm details about their work ethic, financial compensation, employment dates, competencies, etc. There may also be value in seeking confirmation from unsolicited references in the candidate’s LinkedIn network.

Gaps/Weaknesses – Candidates often provide written referrals. While reference letters can be helpful, there is reason for some skepticism. It is important for recruiters to notice what is not mentioned in the reference letter and to follow up with the reference on those gaps. Optimally, the recruiter would want the reference letter to be from a manager or someone who presided over the candidate.

Honest Feedback – The best reference checks give honest feedback about the candidates. They are not afraid to discuss the candidate’s flaws or their weaknesses. Recruiters should be skeptical about references that only highlight the candidates’ successes.

Reference checks are a critical part of the recruitment process. They are necessary for ensuring the validity of the candidate.

Don’t have an employer to do reference checks for? Find one on our website!

Ahoy Employ is the easiest way for employers to post vacancies and invite the most reputable recruiter in the industry to find top candidates. This is how it works.

Luke Gass, Founder of Ahoy Employ
Barbara Leist, Business Analyst at Ahoy Employ

Trust is Truth

Let’s face it – some recruiters have a terrible reputation.

Many employers feel burned from past experiences with recruiters where they felt that they did not get the quality of candidate they were seeking, or felt they were paying too much. But, it’s not just employers that have felt burned by employers.

Candidates also feel ignored and have felt like they were put in positions that did not adequately match their talent. Our mission at Ahoy Employ is to make recruitment honest and to ensure that all of our recruiters are trustworthy. How do we do that?

Recruiters need to build that trust with employers again.

So what can recruiters do about the lack of trust employers have with them? There are four key things that recruiters can do to build trust with employers:

Take an Interest – In order for employers to feel they can trust a recruiter, recruiters need to establish a relationship. Distrust hurts both the employer and the recruiter. It hurts the employer because they are working with a person they feel does not hold their best interest at heart. It is bad for the recruiter because it tarnishes their reputation and potential referrals from them.

Know their Need – Many recruiters do not take the time to get to know employers: the company, culture, management style, etc. and therefore do not know exactly what the employer is looking for. The more you get to know the company, the greater clarity you have to identify the perfect ‘fit’.

Communication – Communication is key. Recruiters need to make an effort to update hiring managers on how the search is progressing.  If recruiters are not making the effort to communicate with the employer on the status of their applications, will they care about informing the candidates on the status of their application?

Follow up – Part of building trust with employers includes maintaining that trust. It is important to follow up with employers afterwards and make sure that they are happy with their candidate. Ensure that you are always putting their interest ahead of your own by making a commitment to always finding them the right candidate for their needs. Also check in with the candidate to ensure they’re in it for the long haul.

Building trust with employers can seem like a tedious process, but the benefits are clear:  referrals. Trust brings more return business from your existing customer and referrals to new customers.

Ahoy Employ is the easiest way for employers to post vacancies and invite the most reputable recruiter in the industry to find top candidates. This is how it works.

Luke Gass, Founder of Ahoy Employ
Barbara Leist, Business Analyst at Ahoy Employ

Recruiters – Beneficial or Superficial?

Recruiters aren’t all bad…right?

Let’s be real. We’ve all had our doubts about recruiters. To employers, recruiters are often seen as a person who just wants a fat pay-check for doing simple administrative work. To candidates, recruiters are individuals who do not take time to thoroughly consider them as a potential fit for the job they are applying for.

So why do recruiters have this terrible reputation? Here are some reasons recruiters rub employers the wrong way:

  1. Resume Overload – Many employers are flooded with resumes of unqualified candidates. Their main concern is that recruiters are not spending adequate time trying to find the right candidate and are more concerned about filling the position as quickly as possible. To combat this, recruiters should pay special attention to the applicability of resumes that they are sending to employers.
  2. Unearned money? For many positions, recruiters can earn up to 30% of a yearly salary for a placement. This can cost companies a lot of money to fill just one position. If recruiters are finding candidates for several positions, it’s easy to assume that recruiters make a lot of money for merely doing a few administrative duties. Ahoy Employ recognizes this concern and gives some financial control to the employer by allowing them to set the placement fee.
  3. Lack of knowledge Recruiters have a reputation for not knowing much about technical requirements or industry requirements of positions in certain fields. While it is important that recruiters try to be as knowledgeable in the industries they are servicing, employers also need to make sure that recruiters have all the information they need about the position before they start searching for candidates. Employers can find qualified recruiters  with a proven track record, expertise and network in a specific industry through Ahoy Employ’s online platform.


Although recruiters may have a bad reputation in business, they are an important part of business growth and development. To find out how you can see who’s the best rated, most trustworthy, and dependable recruiter in your industry and city, schedule a demo with us today!

Ahoy Employ is the easiest way for employers to post vacancies and invite the most reputable recruiter in the industry to find top candidates. This is how it works.

Luke Gass, Founder of Ahoy Employ
Barbara Leist, Business Analyst at Ahoy Employ

4 Mistakes Employers Make with Recruiters

Finding the right recruiter can almost be as tough as finding the right candidate.

Maintaining a good relationship with recruiters is an important part of hiring candidates. Many recruiters simply send multiple candidates over to fill up the spot as quickly as possible, while other recruiters spend time ensuring the right fit for the organization. At Ahoy Employ, we work hard to ensure you are matched with the right recruiter, but here are some suggestions for maintaining a good relationship with recruiters.

1) Ensure they understand the job Requirements – It is important that recruiters know exactly what you want. Showing them the job description may not be enough. While it could take time to explain what you are looking for, it is better than making a bad hire.

2) Communication is important – The first candidate they suggest to you may not be exactly what you had in mind. Instead of telling them that they did not meet the requirements, explain why they did not meet the requirements. Give cues as to what was missing so that they are better able to come up with the right match.

3) Don’t delay – Chances are, your top candidates are interviewing for other positions as well. The top candidates may move onto other opportunities if organizations take too long to connect with them.

4) Fees – Once the candidate is found, ensure that you stick to the original fee agreement you had with the recruiter. Do not try and renegotiate the price once the hire has been made, as this will strain the relationship between you and the recruiter. Ahoy Employ tries to make this process easier by ensuring that employers are able to set their price within their budget. 

Ensuring that recruiters know exactly what you want is a great step to quickly finding the next successful candidate. Schedule a demo, and Ahoy Employ will connect you with qualified recruiters on your terms and within your budget. 

Ahoy Employ is the easiest way for employers to post vacancies and invite the most reputable recruiter in the industry to find top candidates. This is how it works.

Luke Gass, Founder of Ahoy Employ
Barbara Leist, Business Analyst at Ahoy Employ

5 Mistakes you Make when Working with Millennials

As more baby boomers enter the retirement phase, millennials will be taking up the largest portion of the workforce. While employers are aware of this, many still struggle to meet the needs of this “Me Generation”. Engaging the millennial generation can be tough, so it is important to make sure you have the right tools to attract these young people.

Did you know that the millennial generation is the largest generation in history? Millennials make up approximately 27% of the Canadian population – more than any other generation.

Here are a few mistakes employers tend to make when hiring millennials:

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Why Reputation is Everything (in the Staffing Industry)

We all know “it’s not about what you know, but who you know.” But, what exactly is it about who you know that makes the world go around?

As humans, we gather a first impression of someone within 7 seconds of having met them. What makes us trust, respect or buy from someone, after only a brief impression? Or not?

In the staffing industry, there is only one way to know whether a particular search firm or recruiter is really all that jazz they have promised while making a first impression, and that is  – word of mouth.

Did you know: “Are recruiters reputable?” is actually a hugely popular question on Quora?

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Disruption in the Recruitment Industry. Is it a Race to Zero?

Recruiters are having to defend their market share more aggressively now than ever before. It’s becoming necessary to embrace a new way of doing business.

The industry is perceived to be “under attack” from Managed Service Providers (MSPs) and that these innovators care nothing about the long term health of the recruiting industry because they drive down the value and quality of delivery.

Is it a race to zero in the name of “cost reduction” and supply chain “efficiencies”?

When UBER was introduced here in Calgary, taxi companies shared exactly the same sentiment. But if you were to ask riders, they’ll tell you that in fact UBER has improved service levels and trust, while reducing costs – and it’s sustaining a transport  industry that still remains highly profitable. Even cab drivers are switching!

The recruitment industry is facing numerous challenges in being heavily disrupted.

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Can Recruiters Give Cold Calling the Cold Shoulder?

When Ahoy Employ surveyed recruiters, cold calling was at the top of the list of  “dirty duties” that comes with a job they otherwise love.  

Despite what you’ve been led to believe, to be a well-paid, successful recruitment specialist, cold calling is NOT necessary.

But without cold calls, how do you get new prospects and vacancies? How do you avoid “feast and famine” business cycles without calling on potential prospects?

Continue reading “Can Recruiters Give Cold Calling the Cold Shoulder?”