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Recruiter or scammer? You decide!

If you needed – which I doubt – any further proof that many of the job hucksters on LinkedIn don’t even bother checking your profile, here’s another installation in my series Adventures in Recruiterland. The day after the last post in that series was published, Kiran contacted me:

Picture of text:

Kiran 1:02 PM
Hi Aleksander,
Hope you you are doing good.
We are looking for Desktop support with Norwegian speaking based in Oslo, Norway for contract.
Please let me know if you are interested.

Thanks
kiran

As I always do, I started by requesting some basic information:

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Hello Kiran,

What are the engagement terms (hours, pay etc.)?
Is this an in-office job (and, if so, where are the offices?) or a telecommuting job?
Can you please give me more information about the position?
Who is the client?

And he promptly responded:

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Kiran 1:05 PM
Hi Aleksander,
Thanks for your response
Rate: 300 DKK/hour

Kiran   1:11 PM
Please find the below job spec,
 Responsible for delivering the Onsite
IT support & services to all users of the individual Site and executing on all assigned IT activities.As part of the Local Onsite IT support
team, ensure the day-to day IT operations availability at the site and when needed serve other sites within the Country.Follow all Global IT Operations (GITO)
guidelines, ensure compliance and seek improvements whenever feasible. Position’s
key accountabilities:Perform the On-Site IT services
and support.Perform the local IT infrastructure
supportCollaborate and engage with LoB
on GITO IT related matters. Provide User training and on-boardingManage IT Equipment resources including
Meeting rooms and AV equipmentAssist and collaborate in IT project
implementation as assigned by Lead or IT Operations managerMultiple visits to remote/ dispatched
sites when applicable Work Agile with Kanban for all assigned
planned tasks and participation in stand-ups Ensure and work in compliance with
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together with the Local
support team to support resolving of local critical infra incidents. Collaborate and engage with LoB
on GITO IT related matters.Interact as Local GITO representative
with affiliate user-community.Ensure usage and promotion the Service
desk, self-services & shift-left.If required, support the distribution
& translation of local communication on IT support topics & relevant Global IT communications as per guidelinesActive provide IT support during
site events and/or local sales cycle meetings 

 Perform On-Site IT services and
supportBe part of a team responsible for
performing all the On-Site IT support activities for <Site> and participate in the IT support for the site/locations connected to the current site/ location.Execute assigned tickets, analyse,
liaise with incident managers & service providers to resolve issues, and manage problems within agreed timeframes, escalating issues requiring special attention.Collaborate with service providers
& GITO global teams on assigned by Tier 1 tickets requiring physical presence and/or infrastructure services.Follow up on and ensure IT security
incidents are resolved in a timely manner.Ensure the quality of the IT services
in accordance with requirements.Confirm proper documentation of
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training per GITO standards, as required.Support customers with the use of
corporate services such as 0365, teams, etc. Manage IT equipment resourcesMaintain and supply all local employees
with the Standard IT equipment according to Global IT guideline.Fulfil Hardware requirements according
to the business needs and Global IT standards.Maintain Hardware and Software assets
& inventory in the relevant tools.Collaborate with hardware asset
manager to ensure sufficient hardware inventory levels Assist and collaborate in IT project
implementationAssist with the implementation of
GITO driven IT project activities and/or new Corporate IT systems.Be part of the Agile Journey Purpose and subject of interaction with
internal/external customers and key contacts Actively work and participate in
the GITO virtual IT Team set-up.Provide IT services and solutions
to <Site> staff and management.When authorised, manage the relationship
with vendors and partners Challenges regarding innovation
and change Improve operational effectiveness.Optimise existing services based
on user feedback. 

 Education requirements Degree in IT/Computer Science or
relevant disciplineFluent in oral and writing in local
language and English. Appropriate service
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 Education requirements Degree in IT/Computer Science or
relevant disciplineFluent in oral and writing in local
language and English. Appropriate service management program
(ITIL foundation certification)Experience with ITSM tools like
ServiceNow Certification in KCS or obtain within
12 months  Work experience :Junior
:  A minimum a degree in  IT/Computer
Science finalised ( No Student) and 2-3 years of IT support related experience.Standard
:  Degree in IT/Computer Science and minimum of 3-6 years of IT support related experience is required. Good technical knowledge in Microsoft,
Window 10, 0365 environment, hardware; infrastructure and IOS devices.Experience working in an International
environment is an asset. Previous experience working in a
24/7 organisation & willingness to travel on regular basis.Working in an Agile set-up with
Kanban

Wall of text aside, let’s pick through it and find the salient points. The job spec involves:

  • Onsite IT support
  • IT Infrastructure support
  • User training and onboarding
  • Management of IT equipment including Meeting rooms and AV equipment
  • IT Project implementation
  • Remote site work
  • Responsible for drop-in/walk-in support

While he cites a single rate – 300 DKK (that would be DANISH kroner) per hour – the experience spec has options for a “Junior” role as well as a “standard” role, both of which requires an IT or computer science degree, though they differ on the job experience where the junior role demands 2-3 years of IT support exerience, and the standard role requires 3-6 years of the same. For reference, I’ve got over fifteen years of experience in IT support.

Curiously, he also fails to answer my questions in a thorough manner, so I rephrase and ask the remaining ones again:

Aleksander R. Nordgarden Rødner (He/Him)  1:36 PM
Hi Kiran,

That was quite the wall of text, and yet you fail to answer all of my questions.

I understand that the client is Novo Nordisk, is that correct?
Would they employ me directly, or would I be employed by a third party?
What are the terms of engagement? 
Where are the offices?

His response, meanwhile, was less than complete:

Picture of text:
Kiran 1:38 PM

This role is with my customer HCL Technologies ltd

I’m getting annoyed, so I answer him tersely:

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Hi Kiran,

Strike two.

I understand that the client is , is that correct?
What are the terms of engagement?
Where are the offices?

His response is troubling, to say the least:

Picture of text:

Kiran 1:55 PM
we did not know exact client name but Actually going on interview arounds they can inform you everything about client name and office location also in Norway

Kiran 2:02 PM

It is a 6 months contract and 5days a week job it is.

Let’s pursue the currency issue, shall we?

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Hi Kiran,

Please clarify; you originally stated that the pay rate is 300 DKK. DKK being the standard abbreviation for Danish Kroner, I'd like to confirm this rate, please.

His response is actually quite surprising:

Using a standard 1750 hours per year, that works out to 525’000 Danish kroner per year, which works out to around 720’000 Norwegian kroner per year. For consultancy fees, that’s pretty damnably low for someone with half my relevant experience – remember that there are a number of deductibles such as contribution to national insurance, private insurance, pension etc. On the other hand, if we’re talking about employee wages, this is unbelievably high.

In other words, this is either someone fishing for consultants at bargain bin rates, or it is a scam. I’m not about to play on either score, and shut him down as follows:

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Kiran,

This is very simple. I do not know you, nor do I know anyone who knows you. You are offering a six-month engagement for work five days per week. Does this mean full time? There is no telling, and there are no other terms of engagement offered.

The client is not named, their offices are at an undisclosed location in Norway - though you have previously claimed that they are in Oslo, I tend to discount this claim until I have an actual area or address.

Curiously, you offer a single pay bracket for two different seniority brackets, and that pay bracket is in Danish kroner (DKK).

Assuming the pay bracket is for someone hired on consultancy terms, they are offensively low. Conversely, they are unbelievably high for someone employed by your customer.

As you can see, there are a significant number of red flags here, and that's before mentioning the fact that I have almost three times the demanded relevant experience.

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