Top Recruiters to Watch 2023

Top Recruiters List 2023

Jeff Waldman is the Founder at ScaleHR

After months of development, we are beyond thrilled to announce this year’s Annual Top Recruiters. The theme for this year revolves around AI and how it’s shaping the industry as a whole. Organizations need to rapidly evolve their processes and people operations to leverage AI. This greatly impacts areas such as recruiting, training and development, and more. Check out the insights shared by this year’s top HR recruiters and HR professionals on AI.

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Top Recruiters List 2023 Edition

April Hicke & Marissa McNeelands

Top Recruiters April Hicke and Marissa McNeelands 2023

Linkedin URL:
https://www.linkedin.com/in/aprilhicke/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/marissamcneelands/
Company website: https://www.trytoast.ca/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
Toast exists to flip the hiring dynamic in favour of women in tech. We want to show women their worth and get them into jobs they love, at companies that value them, for the pay they deserve. By sending personalized jobs with vetted partner companies that have the Toast stamp of approval, Toast members know that they are seeing jobs that they are qualified for, at companies that value them, despite maybe not meeting all the listed job requirements. Mission and value aligned organizations that are looking to increase gender diversity can work with us to hire for their teams!

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
AI in the recruitment industry isn’t new. Companies have looked to AI for several years: NLP to screen out and rank resumes, and sentiment analysis to help make hiring decisions. AI has a clear efficiency benefit in the hiring function, saving companies time and getting people hired faster. However, the extent to which AI is used in making hiring decisions has been heavily debated and has resulted in companies adding more human-in-the-loop steps. Since these models are trained on data from within a workforce that was made by and for a specific demographic of people, they will make decisions to reinforce that. Ie. If your tech workforce is 80% male, don’t expect any AI trained on your historic data to choose qualified female or non-binary candidates an equal amount of the time. So, with AI, companies are stacking the structural bias, with automated bias, and leaving an inherently biased person to make the final call. It’s broken.
What we are doing at Toast, is using AI to prevent women from being screened out. Letting them get their foot in the door. We know that even when all gendered language is removed from a resume, that even the most basic algorithms can successfully detect gender 75% of the time.

So we are flipping the dynamic. We train our matching algorithms on a dataset that allows us to compare candidates against a job profile, yes, but also against a pool of talent that doesn’t necessarily fit into the data profile we see of successful candidates in tech. We then use automation to create a profile that eliminates bias based on gender, foreign work experience, and socioeconomic status. We use AI to ensure that those that are usually automatically rejected from the job search, have a second chance to be considered. So that we aren’t leaving anyone behind in the advancement of AI.

What are some talent acquisition trends you see going into 2024?
With companies calling employees back to the office and talent not willing to do so, I predict that the war for talent is only going to get worse. Yes, we are seeing 1000 applicants on a job posting, but companies are still struggling to find the right person who ticks all the boxes. Companies are going in strong with their wish list, and talent isn’t here for it. I predict companies will need to be the ones to waiver in order to attract and retain the talent they need to grow. Especially in tech. On the other side of that, we do see that these hard requirements are leaving already-marginalized groups behind. That new immigrant or single mother who might be the only person qualified to do the job, isn’t applying to your “work 9-9 in office” listing because women still have the double burden that most men do not. So companies get lazy and hire the man because “no women applied”. So I hope in 2024, companies look themselves in the mirror and start to think about how they need to change in order to create a diverse talent pool that is needed to make Canada a player in the tech ecosystem. And the government needs to step up to help them make it happen!

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
We have a wide array of roles posted right now and our job board is always live on www.trytoast.ca We have roles from marketing to sales and customer success to devs and engineers!

Best tip to break into tech?
Network network network. Have 5 coffees for every job you apply for. You need to think of yourself as a digital product – what features set you apart from the rest? What skills did you develop in previous roles that are transferable? Hint: Most are.

Favourite travel destination?
We both love love love Portugal and Tofino. (Surfs up!)

Jessica Smith

Top Recruiters Jessica Smith 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jessicafsmith/
Company website: https://savantrecruitment.ca/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
I have been working on the back end to revolutionize recruitment for clients across North America, using a sniper rifle approach to headhunt top talent. Unlike some traditional agencies stuck in the past, I’ve pioneered the future of recruiting firms with cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence. The old-school mentality and outdated tools hindered efficiency, but I’ve been working to shatter those barriers.

My mission? To prove there’s a smarter, faster way to deliver top-notch talent while slashing time-to-fill metrics. Soon, we’re hoping to expand past North America, reshaping recruitment globally.

We have added some cutting edge partnerships that our clients can take advantage of for their business’, so that they can save time, money, and get more out of their business. We just recently partnered with Flow Ventures to help our clients get more from their SR&ED credits/refunds. There are more partnerships we have as well that our clients will be able to benefit from in their business to help them stay ahead of the competition.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
Efficient Candidate Sourcing: AI algorithms analyze vast pools of data to pinpoint the most suitable candidates, saving time and effort in the sourcing process.

Automated Resume Screening: AI-powered tools scan resumes, highlighting relevant skills and experience, ensuring recruiters focus on the most qualified applicants.

Enhanced Candidate Engagement: Chatbots and AI-driven communication tools engage candidates promptly, providing instant responses and enhancing the overall candidate experience.

Data-Driven Decision Making: AI analyzes recruitment data, offering valuable insights into hiring trends, allowing recruiters to make informed decisions and predict future talent needs.

Improved Diversity and Inclusion: AI tools can mitigate bias in the hiring process by focusing solely on qualifications, promoting a more diverse and inclusive workforce.

Predictive Analytics: AI algorithms predict candidate success based on historical data, aiding recruiters in identifying candidates likely to excel in specific roles.

Personalized Onboarding: AI-driven platforms provide personalized onboarding experiences, ensuring new employees are integrated seamlessly into the company culture.

Skills Gap Analysis: AI identifies skill gaps within the workforce, helping organizations upskill employees or hire individuals with the required expertise.

Continuous Learning and Development: AI-powered learning platforms offer tailored training programs, ensuring employees’ skills remain relevant in rapidly evolving industries.

AI is changing EVERYTHING. AI is set to add $210 Billion to the economy by next year according to Google and BNN. Though recent data from Toronto Metropolitan University found just four per cent of Canadian companies are using AI. At this point, if you’re not utilizing this in your company, you are going to be behind while other companies will be surpassing you in the market because they adopted it early.

4% is too low and unfortunately if this number does not grow sooner and faster, these companies are going to eventually be left in the dust by their smaller competitors that knew to adopt AI early.

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
There needs to be more coaching amongst working with executives who have not honed out their Talent Acquisition process. I am hoping to see a more streamlined approach to Talent Acquisition, and not the mess it became in the market this past year.
Hopefully more seriousness to hire from employers who are looking for talent.
Posting the salary is a must – if you are still of the mindset that you shouldn’t do this, you’re screwed.
Data Driven Decision Making – For real this time. Too many companies are flying by the seat of their pants right now and it’s bottlenecking them big time. Fluffing off data ain’t it.
UPSKILLING is another major one.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
Currently recruiting for Data Engineers, Sales Reps for specific industries outside of Technology. Tech went down in 2023, and it was important to me to diversify my portfolio again in the agency, which I have successfully done. Staying niche was not an option for me despite having 10 years of experience in the Tech Industry, and for anyone reading this, yes being niche is a big selling point for a lot of agencies, but what happens if that industry goes down?

I was faced with that dilemma this year and so I’ve been building and utilizing networks outside of technology and breaking into new markets and can PROUDLY say that I am not niche. Recruiters do not have to specialize in one specific area to be successful at what they do.

I want to make this crystal clear in the market, especially to hiring managers debating on which agency they should go with, because niching down has hemorrhaged numerous businesses in the market which we saw this year in the Technology sector and caused agencies to struggle.

We need to reshape our outdated thinking around how recruitment works. You need to work with a recruiter that knows how to hunt, and hunt well. Recruiters that know how to research and read the nuances of the roles they are recruiting on so that you can have all the details in front of you about what the possibilities are for this next hire and what the market is delivering BASED ON DATA.

Best tip to break into tech?
Be passionate about it, and always keep up with the latest trends. This is what hiring managers are looking for, and they’re looking for your opinions on which way things are going to go as tech continues to evolve. Get in the same rooms that these tech leaders are in. This means going to conferences, meetups, and making connections with people in the industry. Someone ALWAYS knows someone. You need to make sure you are staying top of mind. If you need help with any of these things, I now offer services to help you compete in this market so that you’re not doing what everybody else is doing.

Favourite travel destination?
Mexico – love it and plan to go back soon!

Shawna Stewart

Top Recruiters Shawna Stewart 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawna-stewart-73230a127/
Company website: https://railz.ai/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
Aligning team talents with business goals, I champion growth, gamify work, celebrate wins, and guide us toward our North Star as a trusted strategic coach and ally.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
Imagine having a sidekick that nudges you towards the right hires, minus the guesswork and the bias—if used right, that’s AI for you. AI is a game-changer in recruiting, mitigating unconscious biases by crafting neutral job descriptions and seeking talent from varied pools. It refines the candidate selection process through advanced analytics, moving beyond keyword matching to a nuanced understanding of applicant skills. AI enhances the candidate experience with timely, personalized communication, and supports interviewers with an insightful data-centric approach to hiring.

What are some talent acquisition trends you see going into 2024?
Job applications are pouring in at an unrecognizable rate, and TA folks have the difficult task to find those standout gems. Some resumes might never see the light of day, and hiring managers can now afford to play hard to get. Watch out for hiring timelines swinging like a pendulum—sometimes it’ll be a sprint; other times, more of a marathon. Savvy job seekers should keep an eye out for those ‘time to hire’ clues to stay ahead and hiring managers should leverage AI tools to help with finding the right match.
What roles are you currently recruiting for?
I’m on the lookout for innovative Solutions Architects and Engineers poised to disrupt the finance sector with innovative API-first solutions that will shape the future of finance.

Best tip to break into tech?
Cast a wide net with your job applications, articulating clearly how your transferable skills align with the roles you’re seeing, and hit up tech events like it’s your job—because, well, it could lead to just that. If you’re hitting walls, try a side door: take a junior gig to learn the ropes, and before you know it, you’ll be climbing that tech ladder.

Favourite travel destination?
Jamaica is my favourite destination—a place where the culture’s vibrancy and embrace of daily celebration resonate deeply with my own values and upbringing.

John Fleischauer

Top Recruiters John Fleischauer 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bigtalljohn/
Company website: https://www.pivotandedge.com/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
I help early-stage companies hire 30 % faster and save ~80 % of their hiring costs vs outdated, traditional hiring methods.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
AI is making the recruiting industry – both on the job seeker and the recruiter side – far more efficient, but also far less human… at least right now. The reason is tools such as ChatGPT are all very new and popular at present, and most are using it to cut corners on tactical, but important tasks such as creating resumes, cover letters, job postings, sourcing messages, and preparing for interviews – on either side of the table. Unfortunately, the end result of this approach, at least for now, is lower quality results, faster. As we learn more about how we can all genuinely use AI in a positive way as it relates to the very human experience that is hiring, and the AI tools themselves become much smarter with more interactions with actual humans, I can see a lot of benefits of leveraging AI in the future. Things like organizations adopting AI-based NLP candidate concierge services, two-way feedback collection devices at every step of the hiring process, and even creating and administering job-specific functional assessments – such as coding or writing assignments as an example. It’s still the early days of AI in recruiting, and it’s natural to see the vast majority of users focus on the lowest-hanging fruit at the beginning, but there is so much upside to evolving our approach to leveraging technology to still provide a “human” experience, I’m very excited to see all of this unfold!

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
The last few years have been an absolute whirlwind for HR and Talent Acquisition Leaders (and the whole world, really), but as a generalization, I believe the common learning experience we can all appreciate is the need to figure out how to “do more with less”. When money is free, it’s easy for talent acquisition leaders to get comfortable with “what has worked in the past”, and spend countless dollars on tools and advertising. In 2024, I suspect we’re going to see more talent acquisition leaders looking for low/no cost solutions to their hiring challenges and focus on organic means to win the talent they need. I definitely suspect more organizations will adopt at least some AI tools into their recruiting toolbox, but I suspect they will be cutting their spending on things like job boards. In a world where there is such a focus on AI tools coming into market, Talent Acquisition leaders have an immense opportunity to stand out vs their talent rivals by providing a better “human” experience to their future hires.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
Since we’re industry agnostic and help early-stage, high-growth companies all over North America, across all market segments, we’re genuinely recruiting for every role you can imagine. There always seems to be a demand (across the board) for technical folks, but we’re also seeing more and more organizations investing time and money into hiring marketing, sales, finance, and professional services folks, too. The market is definitely picking up!

Best tip to break into tech?
I’ll break this answer into two parts. First of all, when I broke into tech, I didn’t even know how to schedule a meeting in an Outlook calendar (yep, I used a paper and pen day planner to stay organized up until that time 😐). You don’t have to be a technical person to break into tech. Certainly, if you have a desire to get into the tech world, you’re going to want to join an organization that you feel matches your values as a human, and you’ll need to be able to show the person making the decision whether to hire you or not that you can provide value to the hiring organization, but to do that, you need to put some effort into your job search. Focus on building human relationships with folks at the company you desire to break in with… not just peppering your resume off to 100 random companies per week. Secondly, once you’re in, say yes to opportunities, learn as much as you can as fast as you can, and stay adaptable. Working in tech moves very quickly, and priorities can change without notice. The pace, especially in an early-stage, high-growth startup is not for everyone, but if you love challenging yourself, learning new skills daily, and you’re OK with the occasional bumps and roadblocks that appear in front of you from time to time, there’s no better place to be.

Favourite travel destination?
This is a tough, but great question. I’ve been really fortunate to have been able to live and work all over the world, and although the flights to and from Australia and Southeast Asia from Toronto are not ideal, I’ve really enjoyed my travels there. If we’re talking about more of a weekend getaway (as opposed to a multi-month journey), it’s tough to beat a Candian summer weekend in cottage country. 🙂

Ina Mistry 

Top Recruiters Ina Mistry 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ina-mistry/
Company website: https://www.biiibo.com/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
I recruit top talent and cultivate a supportive company culture to fuel future growth.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
Like a lot of industries, the recruiting industry is also seeing an AI wave with the introduction of new technologies. These AI-powered tools are revolutionizing candidate screening and allowing AI powered algorithms to analyze and rank resumes based on predetermined criteria. This saves recruiters time and streamlines the recruiting process by surfacing the most qualified candidates, enabling recruiters to focus their efforts where they matter the most. These algorithms also play a pivotal role in candidate sourcing by analyzing vast amounts of data from several sources, such as job boards, social media platforms, and networking sites. The AI-driven automation of this process empowers recruiters to access a larger and more diverse pool of candidates quickly and efficiently. By doing so, they can discover top talent that might have been overlooked through traditional methods.

What are some talent acquisition trends you see going into 2024?
Looking ahead to 2024, several talent acquisition (TA) trends are emerging that will contribute to more efficient and effective processes.

First, there is a growing importance of AI and automation – they are becoming crucial in the TA process. These technologies streamline candidate sourcing, screening, and assessment, making the hiring process more efficient and data-driven.

Second, there is a greater emphasis on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) technology. This helps to ensure that recruiting processes are fair, transparent, and unbiased. These tools help to promote a more diverse workforce and contribute to better business outcomes such as improved decision-making, increased market adaptability, and better talent retention.

Finally, data-centric recruiting will slowly become a cornerstone of TA. This is because recruiters leverage analytics and data-driven insights to make informed decisions at every stage of the hiring process. This includes tracking the performance of various sourcing channels, assessing the effectiveness of assessments and interviews, and predicting future talent needs based on historical data. Data-centric recruiting can help an organization find the best talent and refine its strategies over time.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
Account Manager, Business Development Representative, AP/AR Clerk and many more!

Best tip to break into tech?
The best tip to break into the tech industry involves a multifaceted approach.

Your resume should stand out! You can do this by highlighting your accomplishments and contributions clearly and concisely. Focus on the use of action verbs, demonstrating the impact of your work, and quantifying results with specific numbers wherever possible.

Don’t underestimate the value of transferable skills! This includes skills such as problem-solving, teamwork, communication, and adaptability. It’s important to showcase these abilities on your resume and during the interviewing process.

Building a strong professional network is essential! Attending tech-related events, joining online forums, and connecting with professionals in the field. Networking can help gain valuable insights, mentorship, job referrals, and a greater understanding of industry trends.

Stay informed about the rapidly evolving tech industry! To help you stay competitive, keep yourself updated on the latest trends, emerging startups, and the problems technology is solving. You can subscribe to industry news, follow tech blogs, and join relevant social media communities. Being well-informed can demonstrate your genuine interest and commitment to the field and industry.

Favourite travel destination?
Nassau Bahamas – beaches, culture, history and delicious food. It’s a slice of paradise with something for everyone!

Jeff Waldman

Top Recruiters 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeffwaldmanhr/
Company website: https://goscalehr.com/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
ScaleHR develops and upskills leaders and HR in the SMB tech industry

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
Where do we start? AI is having a massive impact on the recruiting industry. Specifically, the key areas that have seen the biggest disruption are sourcing, candidate experience, recruitment workflow automation, skills assessment and scalability. Leveraging the right AI tools can open up a recruiters’ network infinitely by tapping into datasets that were never accessible by using traditional recruiting methods. Chatbots that get smarter the more they are used and interacted with can provide candidates, applicants and prospects with real-time information that can support Recruiters and their heavy workloads. These bots can also be used to aid in application processes, acting as an employer brand advocate and supporting accommodation of specific candidate needs. The most noticeable and recognizable impact of AI in recruitment is the ability for Recruiters and teams to scale their operations—leveraging AI to help with interview scheduling, creating compelling job descriptions, job interview questions, assessment mechanisms, automated workflows and the list goes on. Scaling recruitment operations massively increases productivity, efficiency and effectiveness.

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
The biggest trend is the continued integration of AI into all areas of recruiting. While adoption of AI is rapidly increasing, the majority of recruiters and teams are nowhere close to levels of AI optimization. This is where we will see the biggest gains, within the “majority population” of recruiters.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
We are currently not recruiting currently but will soon be looking for expertise in business operations, community management and business development.

Best tip to break into tech?
Depending on what you do, the best way to gain entry into an industry is through networking. It’s easier said than done but it’s about giving and add value to others as a starting point. This could be in the form of volunteering for an industry event, helping with a company project, etc… Another suggestion is to attend tech-industry-related events and there are many of them. It’s a ripe opportunity to network, volunteer, contribute, and build relationships.

Favourite travel destination?
To date, my favourite travel destination has been a toss up between Costa Rica and St. Maarten.

Vidhi Gulati

Top Recruiters Vidhi Gulatin 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vidhi-gulati/
Company website: https://www.canadamentors.com/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
I am an entrepreneurial HR leader with over a decade of experience across Recruitment, Strategy, Team Building, Coaching and Mentorship. As a business , we help North American startups and scaleups build diverse teams and find technical talent locally and remotely. Our talent ranges from product, engineering, and data, to finance and accounting.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
AI is augmenting Talent Acquisition teams and changing the way we operate. From sourcing, screening to bais free skills evaluation – AI has a big role to play in every TA function today. It has not just improved productivity multiple folds but also made the human engagement all the more important. What used to take us days to source, screen and reach out to relevant candidates, can now be done in hours. Emphasis has shifted dramatically towards human interactions and need to authenticate technical and soft skills. Today, you are expected to be a lot more savvy and abreast with AI Saas tools and platforms, if you have to excel in the new world. The world has suddenly become 10x smarter and efficient and so has the role of HR.

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
– AI in recruitment, design, engineering and expectations from today’s engineers
– Rise of No Code and Automation Engineers
– Change in Focus of candidates on the kind of companies and people they work with
– Remote to Hybrid
– Change in the ways Talent Acquisition teams operate with AI
– Expectations from candidate with how easy access to information has become with AI

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
Senior engineering roles- Backend and Fullstack, Frontend. Management roles + Finance and Accounting and IT.

Best tip to break into tech?
Learn on your own in your free time by using the ample resources online. Start small- help a friend build a website, or an app and learn on the go, then add that experience to your resume and target companies that have a strong technical technical leadership team that allows people to learn and grow while mentoring and guiding them.
Use AI and community platforms to learn and grow. Build your network and help others. Learn in and with public.

Percy Hernandez

Top Recruiters Percy Hernandez

Company website: https://vanhack.com/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
As a Talent Manager, I guide tech pros in job searches, skills matching, and dream job pursuits while facilitating immigration.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
AI is revolutionizing the recruiting industry by offering recruiters AI-powered tools, lightening their workload, and facilitating a sharper focus on strategic tasks for greater day-to-day effectiveness.

What are some talent acquisition trends you see going into 2024?
The use of AI will continue growing, and keep considering remote and hybrid work models for companies, Diversity and Inclusion will continue to play a key role as well as flex culture in companies.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
Robotics, Cyber Security, and many Fullstack roles with high-level programming languages.

Best tip to break into tech?
Embrace coding boot camps and dedicate yourself to a world of continuous learning.

Favourite travel destination?
The Peruvian Andes, the Venezuelan Caribbean islands and Punta del Este Uruguay.

Cecilia Davila

Top Recruiters Cecilia Davila 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/cecidavila/
Company website: https://vanhack.com/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
I help tech companies find amazing talent globally and help IT candidates navigate the hiring process with North American and European companies.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
AI is shaping the recruiting industry in so many ways. It can expedite hiring, reduce costs, improve the candidate experience, offer valuable insights, minimize bias, introduce more advanced talent search tools, and deliver data-driven results. On the candidate side, AI can aid in crafting resumes and cover letters, doing market research, and preparing for interviews. AI has the potential to make a positive impact on the recruitment industry, but it’s important to acknowledge the human element. AI can handle routine and straightforward tasks, enhancing productivity as a result. However, human recruiters remain essential for exercising critical thinking, empathy, and sound judgment, particularly in making well-informed hiring decisions that demand a contextual understanding, something AI cannot fully replicate.

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
AI will keep helping with hiring. Things like predictive analytics and AI-powered assessments are common now, and they help recruiters make better choices and improve candidate’s experience. Using data to make decisions about hiring will be crucial. Companies will use data to figure out which ways of finding new employees work best, identify blockers, and make their hiring process better. Employers will focus more on skills assessment as opposed to traditional credentials. Soft skills like emotional intelligence and communication skills will continue to be in demand. Working from home or in a hybrid arrangement is sticking around after the pandemic. Companies are getting more serious about making sure they hire people from all backgrounds, so Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion hiring policies will remain relevant.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
I’m recruiting for Senior Frontend Engineer, Senior Full Stack Developer, Data Application Architect, Lead Application Developer, Cloud Automation Engineer, Unity Software Engineer, PHP Developer, Chief Technology Officer, Technical Account Manager, Customer Success Manager, and Business Development Representative.

Best tip to break into tech?
To think about tech not only as a programming world and leverage transferrable skills. There are many positions in tech that do not require a coding background, like technical writer, technical project manager, accounts manager, talent acquisition specialist, digital marketing manager, to name a few. To break into the coding world, start by learning basic programming languages like Python; it is the most straightforward programming language among all the others.

Favourite travel destination?
Anywhere with white sand beaches and warm water! My next trip is to Sayulita in the Pacific Coast of Mexico.

Anna Pilotti 

Top Recruiters Anna Pilotti 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/annapapis/
Company website: https://pathcore.com/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
I am the HR Specialist at Pathcore. I am responsible for recruitment, employee relations and benefits to support the company’s workforce and culture!

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
One big way that AI is shaping the recruitment industry is by streamlining processes and automating tasks like resume screening, improving the candidate match, and enhancing diversity efforts. By streamlining these processes it can lower the amount of repetitive tasks that need to be done. Another great thing about AI is it can optimize your workflows which makes the hiring process more efficient and cost effective.

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
Some trends that I see going into 2024 would be:
The rise of AI and how its being used in talent acquisition
Remote work is becoming more of a permanent trend among companies/organizations. It allows companies to access a larger talent pool and offers flexible options.
Data Analytics. By harnessing data we can make informed decisions, identify patterns and trends within our hiring process and have it assist with a company’s continuous improvement.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
I am currently recruiting for a technical project manager, software developers, a technical account specialist, a product designer and a software engineering team lead.

Best tip to break into tech?
Networking! Attending tech meetups, conferences, and joining online tech communities can help lead you to discovering job and mentorship opportunities.

Favourite travel destination?
It would have to be Japan! My husband and I loved Japan so much back in 2019, so we decided to go back for our honeymoon this year. The food is fantastic and there are so many amazing things to see.

Nima Maham

Top Recruiters Nima Maham 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nima-maham-638aa363/
Company website: https://www.surex.com/home

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
Have you seen that youtube video shot by a kindergarten teacher where she is asking a young student to point the card with the number 5 and then the number 1 on it and when he does his best friend cheers real loud ‘that’s my boy!’ (search kindergarten hype man on youtube). Well I’m that hype man to our employees at Surex Insurance, Canada’s most innovative brokerage, and also to all the people wanting to work here.

In addition to the hiring I work with the current staff in the areas of career development. In most cases I was a team member’s first friend at Surex. When they first applied I got them to tell me about their career hopes and dreams and maybe was a listening ear when they explained why they wanted to move on to a new opportunity. That relationship continues once they are hired.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
AI is a great place to generate answers to questions about the recruiting industry 😉 We hear about AI taking our jobs but it really is a tool that is helping the cream rise to the top. As recruiters we rely on our hutches but now we have AI to help assess candidates facial expressions and tone of voice. Automating numerous routine tasks not only enhances our productivity but, more importantly, facilitates a smoother transition for candidates when changing jobs.

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
Is the remote vs in office debate over? I still see that being a driver for candidates. Upskilling is the word of the year for me. Most candidates ask me what the room for growth at Surex looks like and what we as an organization are willing to do to help them get there.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
-PHP and Angular Developers
-Help Desk Technician
-Licensed Insurance Broker
-Business Development Manager

Best tip to break into tech?
Professional athletes don’t actually break into sports. They tend to play a sport growing up and when it’s time to try out for a team they usually know how to play. It’s the same with tech. We hire tech staff that enjoy doing this stuff in their own time. In an interview I am going to ask for your GitHub and want you to tell me about projects you work on in your free time. Going back to the sports analogy, if someone knows how to run fast they might be able to learn how to hurdle or to catch a football while sprinting. Same goes for tech. Learn basic programming, maybe Python, learn basic databases, then get into data science.

Favourite travel destination?
I’m sitting on Waimea Beach on the north shore of Oahu. Finishing a piece of pie from Ted’s Bakery (Chocolate Haupia). Any time of the day that place is the closest place to heaven I can think of.

Manal Abu-Shawar

Top Recruiters Manal Abu-Shawar 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/manal-abu-shawar/
Company website: https://www.wisedocs.ai/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
Manal focuses on recruiting, policies, DE&I, legal compliance, employee development, HR strategy, and program design to enhance company culture at Wisedocs.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
AI has rapidly transformed the recruiting industry in recent years. It is now central to the HR process, from sourcing candidates to conducting interviews. AI-driven automation streamlines tasks like drafting job descriptions, offers, and HR policies, optimizing efficiency and compliance. AI helps foster diversity and inclusion by minimizing bias in hiring practices. It also empowers data-driven HR strategy and facilitates employee engagement and development. With technology’s ongoing evolution, the potential for AI in HR is boundless.

What are some talent acquisition trends you see going into 2024?
Looking ahead to 2024, we see talent acquisition undergoing notable changes. AI will play a more integral role in ATS and HRIS platforms, streamlining and improving the candidate experience. Candidates are now seeking not only the right job but also the right cultural fit within companies, emphasizing the importance of company values and culture. The virtualization of the talent acquisition process, which gained momentum after the COVID-19 pandemic, has become the new norm, broadening the talent pool and emphasizing the need for digital recruitment strategies and virtual assessment tools.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
So many exciting roles are waiting to be filled at Wisedocs in Engineering as well as Clinical and Quality Assurance. We are currently, as of November 2023, hiring:

Medical Documentation Training Specialist
Medical Summary Writer/ Medical Consultants (Medlegal)
Operations Managers
Front-End JavaScript Developer
Full Stack Developer
HR Generalist / Recruiter

All positions are fully remote, with the option to be hybrid in Toronto, and available for application at wisedocs.ai/careers.

Best tip to break into tech?
Breaking into the tech industry can be a rewarding journey, and one effective approach is joining a startup. Startups offer a dynamic environment filled with exciting products and projects. This is an ideal place for candidates eager to learn quickly and work on a diverse range of initiatives. If this is you, just apply! Startups are always looking for talent, including new or junior roles.

In a startup, fresh ideas are not just welcomed; they’re encouraged – and that’s especially true at Wisedocs. You’ll have the opportunity to make a substantial contribution and have a meaningful impact on the products being developed and launched to the market. Startups often foster an entrepreneurial spirit and a culture of innovation, making them an excellent choice for those looking to launch their tech career on an exciting and impactful note. Check out how our team built a state-of-the-art generative AI platform for our customers who need medical records reviewed, summarized, and more.

Favourite travel destination?
So many destinations come to mind when reminiscing on my travels. I am always adding new and exciting places to my bucket list! However, my home will always be my favourite destination to return to, which is Amman, Jordan.

Sarah Brekelmans 

Top Recruiters Sarah Brekelmans 2023
Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/growth-marketing-recruiter/
Company website: https://brightlysearch.com/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
I specialize in partnering with early stage startups to recruit for marketing focused roles, and advise on how to effectively build revenue generating marketing teams.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
I think AI is shaping in industry in both good, and bads ways. In a good way – I think AI has offered some great supporting tools to help recruiters (both internally and externally) do there jobs better. Such as, drafting better job descriptions, helping evaluate initial resumes, and drum up ideas for better ways to evaluate candidates in an interview. However, I find when AI is used to reach out, or manage candidate conversations – it creates a cold, non user friendly experience for a candidate. The reality is, recruitment is really about people and psychology. When AI gets involved in that, it creates a very robotic, cold way of communicating – which in my opinion, the recruitment industry needs far less of.

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
Specific to startups, I think that these companies will continue to be very intentional, and careful with any hires they make, and attempt to remain lean. Gone are the days where scaling rapidly and making volume hires at the same time are looked at as the preferred option. Any hire they make needs to be able to effectively contribute to the bottom line. When it comes to talent acquisition, this means that there will be more focus and time put on making sure the role they are hiring for truly makes sense for the business. It also means there will be more time put into evaluating candidates to ensure they are a long term fit.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
The bulk of the roles I’m working on are net-new growth marketing or product marketing leadership roles for early stage startups both here in Canada, and in the US.

Best tip to break into tech?
My top tip, is to put in the effort and time into researching the exact function you would be most interested in taking on in the tech space. “Tech” is very broad these days – there are so many ways to to get involved and make an impact in the industry. Once you have a good idea on what that is – narrow in on networking with people in that function and perhaps even look at taking courses that will help you ramp up your knowledge and skillset in that area.

Favourite travel destination?
Central America will always be dear to my heart!

Shahin Hoque 

Top Recruiters Shahin Hoque 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/shahinhoque/
Company website: https://wagepoint.com/ca/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
I lead hiring initiatives, collaborate with teams, optimize strategies, and enhance our hiring brand. Connecting talent/misfits with opportunities!

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
Enhancing our interviews, my one on one interviews with candidates are solely focused on chatting and getting to know the candidate. We use fireflies.ai to record our notes, this way i’m not typing everything out as we’re speaking allowing me to give the candidate my full attention and get to know and connect with them more on a personal level.

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
Some trends I see happening in the TA world: The growing need for nurturing companies’ current talent. Remote work becoming more prominent, lets face it candidates own the entire job hunting process, and if companies want to see better and more engaged employees then remote work will be a great option for them to thrive in. It gives you access to much broader pool of candidates.

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
Marketing Copywriter (US)
senior .net engineer
Customer Support Specialist (Western Canada)
Growth Hacker (US)
Fraud Analyst (6 Month Contract)

Best tip to break into tech?
Keep learning about what is essential, stay up to date with trends, build your network, leverage linkedin with courses, upgrade your skills and apply apply apply. There will always be that one company that gives you a chance and a foot in the door.

Favourite travel destination?
Thailand! Ko Phi Phi to be exact.

Adam Gellert

Top Recruiters Adam Gellert 2023

Linkedin URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/adamgellert/
Company website: https://hiredhippo.ai/

Describe what you do in less than 140 characters.
I coach companies with 1-250 employees on how to attract hire and retain the most high-potential, exclusive talent in Canada.

What are some ways that AI is shaping the recruiting industry?
The recruiting industry has faced challenges like inefficient practices, poor candidate experiences, and time-consuming application processes. AI is introducing solutions we will keep an eye on but we actually think it’ll play a smaller role in thinking and a stronger role in efficiency. You can write job descriptions to onboarding but recruitment is human. You can’t have AI screening resumes and get the best results, you need human connection and experience.

What are some talent acquisition trends do you see going into 2024?
The obvious ones are Remote & Flexible Work schedules, Deep work instead of busy work and getting away from hustle culture. The less obvious trend is a Multiple Career System – where it’s going to be people working multiple jobs, one for passion, one for income, one for learning. Side hustles

What roles are you currently recruiting for?
We help Canadian and US SMBs or Startups bootstrap -Series B go from 1-250 people.
Our roles are all niche, hard to fill, Executives, Developers, Sales, Marketing, Operations, Customer Success.

Best tip to break into tech?
Figure out how to solve problems, Show that your will to learn on your own with minimal support, you’ve got trust, attitude, passion and you’re super determined. Go look at programs like Women in Tech by TalentMinded, and Palette Skills. Go join a small startup and work for the Founder, take risks, ask what their biggest problem is and go solve it.

Favourite travel destination?
Japan

800 1200 Eric Rafat

Eric Rafat

Eric Rafat is a passionate founder with expertise in startups, building high-performing teams, and growth marketing. He is a top ranked tennis player and always up for a conversation about startups and tech. Eric also writes on EricRafat.com

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