Interview With a Recruiter, Celinda Appleby, HP

From time to time we bring you Q/A sessions with recruiters, who provide insights on their company, its hiring practices and job search tips.

Celinda Appleby, HP

Tell us about yourself. I have been recruiting in the DC Metro Area for eight years in both agency and corporate capacities, supporting the Intelligence Community for the past three years. Currently I am a Strategic Sourcing Lead for Hewlett Packard – Federal. I am a Montgomery County native and a huge Redskins fan. I am slightly obsessed with my Kindle, reality TV, organic living, and Pinterest. Most nights, if I’m not scouring the net for cleared candidates, you could find me having an impromptu dance party with my 3-year-old twin boys.

Any words of wisdom for cleared job seekers using social media? Embrace it. Always be yourself. But remember everything you tweet is public. By no means censor yourself, but be aware of your online reputation.

Tell us about the hiring process with your company. Candidates apply via traditional methods (www.hp.com/go/jobs) but we also proactively source for specific requirements. After a recruiter prescreen, they are submitted to the hiring manager for review. Prior to an in-person interview a technical screen may be conducted via phone. Candidate is invited to meet with the hiring manager, either onsite at the client facilities or at an HP office. In ideal situations, the candidates are invited to meet with team members. Our wish is to have everything completed in a day, but the process can be spaced out over the course of few days depending on candidate and team availability. Offers are extended and hopefully accepted.

What types of cleared positions do you fill? I personally support the US Public Sector/Federal divisions with a wide variety of technical opportunities all over the DC Metro area, with clearance requirements from TS/SCI to TS/SCI Full Scope Polygraphs.

What are the toughest security cleared positions for you to fill and why? The positions that keep me up at night are Engineers with HP Openview and BTO experience and Software Engineers with Full Scope Polygraphs on both sides of the river.

What do you see security cleared job seekers doing wrong that you want to tell them to stop doing? I find that many active cleared job seekers are impossible to reach, which is understandable given their working situations. I would recommend to any job seeker, to do their best to stay connected with their recruiters. A short call during lunch or after hours will help build a relationship. The best tweet I read this week “I can’t hire you if I can’t find you!” speaks volume to the pains of communication.

What do you want cleared job seekers to know about your job? My job evolves daily, based on the requirements on my desk but my attitude will never waver. I will remain engaged and easily accessible. My job requires lots of research, so when you hear excitement in my voice it’s genuine. I am really excited to have found you.  At the end of the day, my job is not to just place a candidate in a role, but to place a candidate in the right role. I often refer to myself as a bus driver, (I have a big circular route). I will come back to you when the right seat on the bus opens up. That is to me is the most important part of my job.

What’s the most inappropriate thing you’ve seen on a resume? Often times, I find that candidates are using very personal email addresses. The ones that can paint a picture of inappropriate actions; I encourage you to create a personal email just for business reasons. For example Firstname.lastname@yourfavoriteemailprovider.com.

If I’m a security cleared job seeker interested in working for your company, what should I do? I would start here: http://www.hp.com/go/hpesuspsjobs
We recently launched a brand new US Public Sector microsite, this link is a one stop operation for all cleared job seekers that want to grow with HP.
Secondly, I would network on Linked In; we have an HP Public Sector group that is very active and moderated by a group of recruiters (myself included). Lastly, feel free to contact me. I am an open networker and welcome any opportunities to help.

I just lost my job, what are the three things I need to do? Update your resume. Reach out to your network. Most jobs are found by those within your immediate circle. Attend cleared hiring events; apply to jobs that match your skill set.

Give us a commercial. Why do I want to work for your company? Beyond the fabulous benefits and innovation that our company exudes, our people feel good about working here! We are growing in the Federal Market. With that comes opportunities for incorporating new ideas and a resurgence of passion in the community. We cannot do that without our employees. It is the people of HP who make our mission achievable and embody our values. Some kudos to note:
- HP ES USPS has been recognized by Virginia Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) for our employment policies that support employees who serve in the U.S. National Guard and Reserve Forces.
- HP ranked #7 in Washington Technology Top 100 list, up from #11 last year. The Top 100 List is an annual ranking of the largest government contractors based on analysis of government procurement data during fiscal year 2010.

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