5 Qualifications Recruiters Look For In Agile Talent

Nov 4, 2022

Have you ever gone into an interview over-analyzing your strengths and weaknesses? The feeling that makes you ask yourself “What do I need to showcase to set myself apart from other agile talent?”

Typically, interviews can be nerve racking. They are full of rapid fire questions, including the old school burning question “where do you see yourself in 5 years?” As a recruiter, I firmly dislike cliche interview questions like this because they do not lead to answers that tell me more about my candidate. I want to get to know my candidates. I want to get to know you.

I came to ICON Agility Services because it is a people-focused culture. We help each other succeed and we value having each other’s back. In kind, I’d like to help you prepare for your next Agile interview. To help get you on the road to success, I will help you make a game plan from my own experience. Recruiters look for many different factors that set you above other Agile Talent. I’ve always been told that recruiters are the gate-keepers to a company, so I thought it would be helpful to provide you with a cheatsheet of the qualities I look for in my candidates.

Top 5 qualifications recruiters
look for when hiring Agile Talent

1. Experience

First things first, you need to show that you are actually qualified for the role you are interested in. When a recruiter asks you “Tell me about your background and your prior work experiences” emphasize any instance or situation where you have hands-on experience with the role you would like to get.

For example: If I am looking for Release Train Engineer (RTE) opportunities, agile professionals that emphasize how many ARTs and PI Plannings they have been a part of will go a long way.

OR: If there are Scrum Master opportunities that need to be filled, those who demonstrate their experience bringing teams together, impediments overcome, and ways you’ve influenced the team’s agile mindset will automatically position themselves for qualification. With this in mind, show the recruiter that you have practical hands on experience that would make you a strong candidate.

2. Presentability

Bottom line: being presentable is such an important factor when going into an interview. You’d be wrong for thinking that being presentable is a given. Speak clearly, confidently, and directly when being asked questions. Keep away from providing long winded answers that might lose the attention of the interviewer. Additionally, show that you are flexible and a “go-getter” that likes to make a true impact. Most importantly, on any video calls get on camera and wear something nice!

3. Consultative

In the agile world, it’s critical to be a consultative influencer. Most companies do not want a role player, they want an impact maker. Consultative is the ability to demonstrate your skills/strengths while coaching others to create real results. Interviewers will look for this unique skill, so demonstrate your ability and your consultative nature within your allotted interview time. Any company could use agile talent who can provide that kind of support for agile transformation.

4. Coachability

You might be thinking “What? A coach being coached?” Accepting feedback from others, even as a coach, promotes the mindset of continuous improvement – even a component of the SAFe® mindset. Make sure your “attitude” or “ego” does not prevent you from continuously growing as an agile professional. Being able to work with others and listen to feedback makes you a better teammate and aligns with what Agile encourages.

5. Ambitiousness

Many recruiters are looking for mentors and continuous learners. Show that you can be “a rockstar!” Set yourself apart from the rest unapologetically. You are someone that goes above and beyond to drive an organization’s transformation forward. So, tell them that! Don’t be afraid to be a disruptor. An organization’s digital transformation relies on employees who want to be a difference maker.

Want to work with us? Apply here!

ICON combines industry best practices and processes with real world experience to deliver pragmatic customer solutions in a rapidly changing marketplace. But we can’t do it alone.

I’m excited to learn more about what you are looking for as the next step in your career (just make sure to use the 5 Qualifiers I just told you about). Apply at the above link, learn more about opportunities to further your professional agile career, or reach out to me directly at Blake.Lawson@iconagility.com.

Written by Blake Lawson , Recruiter

ICON partners with clients in their Business and IT Transformations to produce collaborative outcomes that have proven vital in many industries. Since 1992, our highly experienced coaches and practitioners have been collaborating with companies to solve their most complex challenges using SAFe® methodology, Business Agility best practices, advanced OKRs, DevSecOps at the team level, and the Lean-Agile mindset