Saturday, October 13, 2007

Internet Research Tip

Good search results do not happen at random. We drive them through our queries. Whether you are searching CareerBuilder or Google the biggest mistake recruiters make is not thinking about their queries. Most recruiters just look at their new acquired job requisition and just start typing directly into the screen those keywords that they deem to be the important skills.

I went to and pulled this position at random. I thought that this job description exemplifies the horrible descriptions we receive to work off of but it can demonstrate how we approach our searches.

If you would indulge me in reading this job description: (The only editing I did was take the company name out.)

Oracle Developer needed to design, develop, and maintain Oracle and web-based applications. In-depth knowledge of Oracle and Oracle tools is a must. 3-4 years of strong programming in PL/SQL, Oracle Forms and Reports required, plus a Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent work experience. Experience in UNIX, C++, JSP, Java, and related tools is a major plus. This is a direct hire opportunity with full benefits.

The normal query would look something like this in a database like CareerBuilder:

[ oracle PL/SQL UNIX C++ JSP JAVA]

When you run the query in at first glance it seems to have done well pulling quite a few software developers but as we look closer they are a total mix of results including a few resumes of recruiters.

Here are my suggestions; since PL/SQL (Procedural Language/Structured Query Language) is Oracle Corporation’s proprietary server-based procedural extension to the SQL database language, you don’t have to use the keyword “Oracle”; especially if you use some of the subset of PL/SQL like DDL or DCL or DML . Our query would begin to look something like this;


Also this position calls for web based application development and JSP is mentioned specifically. Since JSP generates html and xml there is no need to use those acronyms, but we can use Java to draw more of the web based work. Some people would use JSP OR Java Server pages so it would we good to use both formats.

[ (PL/SQL OR DDL OR DCL OR DML)(JSP OR “Java-Server pages” ]

If you went outside of the resume databases into a search engine like; you’d have to add a little something extra to re-emphasizes the database portion of the job try adding (RDBMS OR ORDBMS). In google the query would look like this:

[ resume (RDBMS OR ORDBMS)(PL/SQL OR DDL OR DCL OR DML)(JSP OR “java server pages”) -job -jobs -submit ]

The point of this exercise is that you need to visualize the results you want and then work the keywords to drive them out through the query. The one thing to remember as researchers/sourcers/recruiters is that we are not called to be engineers or programmers or experts in whatever field you are recruiting for but you do have to develop an expertise at finding the right keywords for your query.


Rithesh Nair said...

Great Blog!
Even though I understand your point but don't agree with you on the string. Agreed that you don't have to include the word "Oracle" but using DDL/DCL/DML doesn't make sense either. It gives you nearly the same results if you remove them.( My point is that the focus should be more on how the candidate writes his/her resume and what keywods might be there in the resume wrt the skill you looking for. For this ex -I rather use Stored procedures (
) or triggers which a good Oracle developers are supposed to know and would write in their resume.
What you think?

Tony Guzman said...

I agree. That was a nice way of breaking down a job description with jumbled requirements.

My only addition is to use the following syntax for the resume portion:

(inurl:resume OR intitle:resume)

This way you get resumes instead of searching for the verb, 'resume'.

SourcingCorner said...

The DDl or Data Definition Language or the DCL Data Control Language or the DML or data Manupulation languages are all subsets of pf PL/SQL and would pull the same results but it would force the Database development hits up to the top and push the software developers with database exposure further down. It is not mean to exclude but to define further. I agree with the Idea that we need to understand who we are seeking as a matter of fact that was to be the toopic of my next blog entry. My idea was first to show show the keywords interact with the search engine or database then to show how they interact with the people we are seeking to find.

Tony great additional comment. I wanted to stay away from a discussion on searching title tags and url's. I agree it is an effective way to quickly narrow your results to just resumes.

Great comments, both of you. Thanks I appreciate both your visit and your participation.

Anonymous said...

All good stuff, but I think you need more NOT terms at the end of the string to get rid of the job postings and resume writing services. This may not impact the results greatly on this particular search, but since you are presenting this as a template to follow generally, I would note that merely using job/jobs/submit only eliminates a portion of the garbage. Some other good ones are -free -send -writing -you -your

-- Glenn Gutmacher