Occasionally, I get an email from a company asking if I want to work for them, either as a software engineer, an intern, or some other technical position.  A month ago, I received one that actually infuriated me (I’ve replaced the company name with Some Company, but if you want to know who it is, just ask me)

Hi Brittany!

I came across your profile while looking for rockstar engineers and was wondering if you would be interested in SWE internships or new grad positions we have here at Some Company. I know my coworker, Some Name, contacted you ealier but for some strange reason, you haven’t replied. WHY? Our headquarters is located in sunny Some City, CA so relocation is required. For someone with your talent, I am not sure why you are not in silicon valley already. Here is your chance!

If you are interested, I would like to you take a stab at a programming puzzle.

If you successfully solve the puzzle, you can automatically move to a technical phone interview with an engineer here at Some Company. It doesn’t hurt to try, right? After all, this could potentially be your dream job…

The puzzle invitation will expire in 7 days. Also, the puzzle is timed so once you start, you cannot stop.

Do you want to accept this CHALLENGE?

Let me know when you are available to work on it and I’ll send you an invite. Make sure you reply with your email address you want me to send the invite.

P.S. I know I know. It takes a lot of time to reply to headhunters (or nice sourcers like me) all day. It’s not my fault you are such a rockstar. Go ahead..point your cursor over the reply button and click. A simple yes or no would suffice.

I know that it is ridiculous to be infuriated by such a letter.  But, I will try to explain to you why:  First, the use of the words “rockstar” and “dream job” makes me take this email less seriously. In fact, this person sounds like a stereotypical sorority girl or valley girl (is there a difference? lol).

In this email, they offer me a programming puzzle.  If I choose to accept this challenge, I can then move on to a phone interview.  If they heard of me from someone or read my CV, they would know that I am not a programmer.  So, offering me a “programming puzzle” is not really enticing.  Second, it is probably not a challenge.  If it is like any problem I’ve heard about from them and similar companies, it is a problem that takes some insight to solve, but is not really a true challenge, yet alone a CHALLENGE.  (I might not have had issue with the word challenge if it were not all capitalized).

The statement that bothers me the most in this email is: “For someone with your talent, I am not sure why you are not in silicon valley already.”  Now, this is a very cocky statement.  Why do they assume that everyone with talent needs to be living in silicon valley?

Although I’ve never received an email from Some Name, I am living up to their expectations by not replying to this email.  Perhaps I am giving up my dream job without really trying, but I doubt it.  Curiosity might get the better half of me one day though.  I expect that if I am bored on a cold day in Austria, I will email them to find out what the puzzle is.

Oh, I almost forgot to include the subject of the email: “FW: Hola from Some Company”  Really?  Is that supposed to look professional?


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One Response to “Recruiters”

  1. Laura Says:

    … that’s special.

    I wish my job search was as easy as yours, though! 🙂

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