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A recruiter I was working with gave me some feedback from the end client, saying that I will not be moving on in the hiring process, because "my resume was too technical". Most of my previous jobs have been related to software development, and my previous positions included system analyst and business analyst as well as web developer. This position was for a IT auditor.

How can I interpret the feedback the recruiter gave me, that my resume was too technical?

  • "Your resume is too technical." - Was that the end of the conversation with the recruiter, or did they go on and suggest changes to help you find a position? – Brandin Aug 3 '15 at 23:51
  • @Brandin They suggested a position for which they thought I would be a better fit for. I accepted and they submitted me – Anthony Aug 4 '15 at 0:08
  • This is actually an issue I run into quite frequently. It's very hard to move into a more business-oriented role when recruiters only see technical job titles that hide the amount of business-focussed tasks that are encapsulated in those roles. – Jane S Aug 4 '15 at 1:14
  • An IT auditor is not an IT specialist. Audit's role is just to make sure that [a] controls are in place [b] controls are effective [c] control application is documented [d] risks are documented; and finally [e] management is aware (from the many reports you will be asked to write). Deep technical skilled people who have never done an audit before tend to make poor auditors. – Burhan Khalid Aug 5 '15 at 5:43
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I have been both a software developer and an IT Auditor. Despite having "IT" in the title, an IT Audit position requires little technical skill and relies more on understanding processes and evaluating evidence that the processes are being followed. For example, review the emails that were sent to managers asking them confirm that the users on a given list still required access to a particular computer system.

While it's quite possible you have the ability to do such a job, in my experience, developers have a different mindset and are easily bored by such a role.

I suspect that is what the recruiter meant by "too technical" i.e. that your skills were more suited to a development role.

If IT Audit really is something that appeals to you, the recruiter may be able to assist in tailoring your CV/resume. I imagine that would require more focus on SDLC, business and IT processes, Quality and most important of all, internal controls.

  • +1 for the mention of internal controls, this is critical. Emphasizing your knowledge of GAAP in general is a plus too. Of course I think all developers who do business programming on Enterprise systems should understand internal controls thoroughly. They need to build them into their systems from the start. Of course I think many IT auditors would be more effective if they understood a bit more of the technical end of at least database development. – HLGEM Aug 4 '15 at 14:43
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I will not be moving on in the hiring process, because "my resume was too technical". ... This position was for a IT auditor.

How can I interpret the feedback the recruiter gave me, that my resume was too technical?

I would interpret it as the fact that the hiring manager doesn't see many resumes from applicants that have your type of mostly-technical (perhaps even pretty much solely-technical?) background. And apparently your profile isn't quite what they are looking for in an Auditor.

Audit (even within IT) is far more about governance, procedures, processes, surveys, controls, best-practices, and compliance than about the more technical aspects of IT.

In future revisions, you may wish to tone down the technical aspects in favor of your background creating and following written processes.

Since you are attempting to change careers, you might wish to talk with someone who is already an Auditor. She/he could give you feedback as you edit your resume into a more Auditor-like form.

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