Posted on November 9, 2010
Filed Under Interviews | Comments Off on Meet Valerie Scarsellato, In My Career Experience “One of the Very Best Recruiters in Our Industry”
Technical Engineering/Software Sourcer/Recruiter at Intel
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• Intel Blog
• Community Volunteering: Foundation for the Blind
• Personal Causes: Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, Arizona Animal Welfare League
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Talent Sourcing Specialist/Sr. Engineering Recruiter at Freescale Semiconductor
Sr. Recruiter at ConsultNet
International Recruiter at Mastech Systems (now Igate)
Today is a momentous occasion for me my friends. Like waiting for Haley’s comet – the drama of anxious anticipation to have the opportunity to interview Valerie Scarsellato is a milestone for me, 4 years in the making since the early days of this blog when once upon a time I sourced analog mixed-signal engineers on behalf of Valerie’s req load at Freescale Semiconductor. I say this without undue flattery, and with the sincerity of a true, unabashed fan of someone who out of over 200 interviews I can honestly state is one of the very best recruiters I have known in my entire career and among those featured since “Six Degrees from Dave” originated. Yes, I said one of the very best I have known in my career – emphasis added.
I learned as much from Valerie as I could have hoped she learned from my tenacity – what it is to be a professional, to take pride in one’s work, to be direct in one’s assessments, and to enjoy the camaraderie of someone you respect. She may blush, but credit is given to where it is earned and I was blessed to have her as a colleague and as a friend.
Valerie and I met awkwardly when on a rare occasion I submitted candidates as a third party one man firm and a year later recognized recent hires made and contested them. She was the recruiter who made the offers. As stated, Valerie takes great pride in her work – but from that question we were both rewarded with the unexpected opportunity to collaborate directly with one another. It was my good fortune. Together we questioned odd requests and personnel matters and we soldiered on. I learned that the way to make Valerie smile was an occasional panda video or jpeg or we could take turns contributing online to support pets left abandoned in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. To this day, I smile recalling our conversations and I still laugh when I recollect being given a free upgrade at a car rental with a 300ZX and not being accustomed to the horsepower as I drove up to meet the team in Phoenix and catching witty remarks from Valerie at how well sourcers were “being taken care of.”
For those who don’t know Valerie, she distinguishes herself at one of the most powerful technology companies in the world. She serves as a Technical Engineering/Software Sourcer/Recruiter at Intel. She sources and recruits for distinguished technical talent in the field of Technical/Product Marketing Engineers in the areas of Software Apps (Linux, Java, C++ for handheld/multimedia devices), BIOS, Telehealth, Medical Devices, Software Business Development, SOA.
She has over 14 years of extensive full life cycle sourcing/recruiting experience in Software/Hardware/Design/Electrical Engineering and related industries. Formerly, she focused on sourcing and recruiting for analog designers, applications engineers, product definers, technical/product marketing, product and test engineers in the area of sensors and power management.
Six Degrees: Tell us of your home world, Valerie
Valerie: I’m from the Pittsburgh, PA area and yes, I’m a lifelong Steelers football fan, that will never change no matter where I may live!! However, in 1999 I decided to move from the ‘burgh to Phoenix, AZ after a 2 week backpacking adventure to Sedona, AZ and the Grand Canyon. I fell in love with the red rocks, the hiking and the sunshine. At that time, due to the upcoming Y2K scramble, there were many IT agencies looking for recruiters and I found one that was willing to relo me so I was on my way!
As destiny would have it, I met my future husband, Gary, the second day after I had moved to Phoenix. The reason this was an extremely synchronous meeting is because we both graduated from the same high school but a year apart and didn’t know each other. My husband is a rocket scientist for Orbital Sciences (no really he is!) I’ve actually seen 3 of his rocket launches from Vandenburg AFB, which of course sealed the deal. We were married on a beautiful afternoon in February2003 in the wilderness of Sedona by a shaman We are the proud parents of 2 adorable Pembroke Welsh Corgis, Jibboo, a 9 year old female and Tugboat , a 5 year old male.
Six Degrees: Tell us about a “day in the life” – the Valerie who I recall enjoyed panda videos and pictures to the animal lover who contributed with me online to pet causes during Hurricane Karina
Valerie: Being a recruiter is awesome, however, it is my dream to one day have an animal sanctuary! I enjoy working with and being around animals as much as I can. I do what I can to donate to AZ Humane Society and Best Friends Sanctuary. I’ve also volunteered at the Brambley Hedge Rabbit Rescue http://www.bhrabbitrescue.org/ These are organizations/charities that are really close to my heart.
I have to say though, Intel is unbelievable with its support of employees putting in community time. They’ll also match your time for any charities you volunteer for with a donation. Intel is an excellent example of a great corporate citizen.
For fun, my passion is music, specifically live music! My husband and I travel predominantly out-of-state to music festivals and to see our favorite band, Phish! Since the new year we’ve been to Miami, Raleigh, Charlotte and Boulder, CO. Last year we saw Phish at the Gorge in Washington state, and Indio, CA at Fest 8. We have a blast and we have such great friends in the jamband community.
Six Degrees: How many years have you been in the staffing industry?
Valerie: 14 years! Frank Sinatra may seem like an unlikely role model for me but his song “My Way” seems to be the mantra I’ve been living. I didn’t follow the same path as most by immediately going to college from high school. However, in 1992 I decided it was time to grow up and get a degree. Of course I had to make it hard on myself and work full-time plus go to school full-time but somehow I managed it and got a BS degree in MIS from Robert Morris College (now University) in 4 years.
My degree is what enabled me to get into recruiting. I certainly wasn’t the programming type but I figured it was a marketable degree when I first started school in 1992. It paid off because it was why I got an interview, and eventually the job, working for the VP of Global Sourcing at Mastech Corporation, an IT solutions company. I started out as her executive assistant, six months later she recognized my strengths and felt I would be a good global recruiter. The next thing I knew I was getting a passport and on a flight to the Philippines 2 weeks before Christmas to recruit for RPG programmers. After that came several trips to Brazil for COBOL Mainframe programmers. It was an awesome time for me, what person didn’t want to go to Rio on a business trip?!! It was very fast-paced work but I loved every minute of it!
I’ve been recruiting now for 14 years, hard to believe! I’ve been a recruiter in multiple types of environments: IT Solutions, agency and corporate. Once I entered the corporate recruiting world is when I transitioned from recruiting for IT professionals, into Engineering professionals. I’ve worked at Motorola, Freescale Semiconductor and now Intel Corporation, Freescale and Intel have given me a well-rounded background into the worlds of electrical engineering and computer science. My recruiting experience has all been at the professional-level, from those elusive low power analog design engineers, 3D Graphics engineers, wireless software architects, tablet applications developers…the list goes on and on. And, as I’m sure you all know and deal with, it’s always in a niche area so the talent is a real challenge to find….it’s why we have jobs!;-)
Six Degrees: What single event had the most impact on your sourcing/recruiting career?
Valerie: I would have to say recruiting in Brazil had the most impact on my recruiting career. These trips required a lot of pre-trip backend work: sourcing, gathering resumes (making sure they were written in English and not Portuguese), phone screens and then scheduling them for on-site interviews. I would fly all night, stand in line through customs, rush to my hotel and have one hundred people already waiting to be interviewed by me. They were such wonderful people though and I thought, this is the best job in the world, exhausting, but the best job ever.
Six Degrees: Do you have a mentor to whom you attribute your overall outlook on recruitment, capabilities, and/or model your career after?
Valerie: I’ve had a few mentors that I’ve learned different components of recruiting from. Of course Dave, you know you’re in the top few? Without you, I wouldn’t have learned the value of LinkedIn early-on and the art of being tenacious! I would also say Glen Cathey of Boolean Blackbelt is another mentor, the man is an unbelievable sourcer. Of course others such as Shally Steckerl and Glenn Gutmacher are impactful to me as well.
Six Degrees: Tell us about your staffing organization at Intel, Valerie.
Valerie: At Intel, the staffing organization is set up somewhat differently than my past experiences. The organization is more compartmentalized in the sense there are multiple positions within the full-life cycle recruitment model. I’m on the Strategic Recruiting Team, I support individual job requirements, as well as, pipeline recruiting for niche skill sets. In this type of a model, recruiters do not own extending offers, which has been a challenge getting used to, even though I’ve been there for over 2 years. I’m focused on sourcing for the talent, engaging the candidates and getting them interested in Intel and in the position, and them passing them off to the hiring manager.
A project that I’ve been involved in for nearly a year has been as a driver for software recruitment branding. It’s been a very cool campaign and I’ve been involved every step of the way, including the idea for using a cartoon character as part of our marketing. This project has been a natural progression since I’ve been recruiting for software engineers and now Intel is in the space where we need to get brand awareness out in the industry that INTEL does SOFTWARE!!
Six Degrees: What recent general news story or industry trend do you feel will have an impact on your work in the future? Why?
Valerie: I’m a proponent of utilizing social media as one of my channels for sourcing/recruiting. I believe it will continue to evolve as we understand what the ROI of these channels may be. I also think that as companies wake up and understand that utilizing social media as their main sites of content, we’ll see a shift. One thing I’d like to note, there is no technology that can replace relationship building. We can network all day long but if we don’t maintain those relationships, it’s all for nothing. I pride myself on being responsive, credible and honest as a recruiter. Sometimes the outcome is out of my control, however, I do my best to keep a candidate in the loop whenever possible.
“There are very few recruiters that I would personally endorse. Valerie happens to be one of them. She knows how to find top passive talent, and many recruiters these days simply don’t. She knows the technology, and understands the needs of each client she supports. She is very detail oriented and knows how to manage her time, her candidates and her clients with ease. She’s gained the respect of the senior leadership within Freescale and Intel because of her efforts in building our Analog and Sensors teams. I look forward to working with Valerie for many years to come in the industry.”
Tiffany Peery, Technical Recruiter, Intel
“Valerie is an outstanding Recruiter and Sourcer. She is always aware of the needs of her clients – both candidates and Managers. At Freescale Valerie was highly respected by her peers and the Managers she supported. She regularly suggested with process and system improvements to me.”
Muir McDonald, Staffing Systems Manager, Freescale Semiconductor
“Val is one of the best full cycle recruiters I have had the pleasure of working with. Her commitment to the hiring team and the candidate exemplify customer service. She has the ability to source difficult skills, and has developed a great understanding of the technologies she recruits. I appreciate her insight when solving critical issues that impact the ability to attract talent. Val is comfortable working with all levels of the organization, and always asks the questions that need to be asked regarding her role. Val has been instrumental in developing and implementing strategies around recruiting niche skill sets. I truly enjoy working with Val and consider her a great asset to the Freescale staffing team.” May 23, 2007
Bill Fulton, Staffing Manager for the Americas, Freescale Semiconductor
“Valerie was very professional, easy to contact, and always willing to provide information with minimal response time. Her ability to streamline the process and make you feel at ease is a true assest.” June 1, 2006
Scott Shadley , Sr. Applications Engineer, Micron Semiconductor Products
“Valerie is hands down the best recruiter I have ever met. She truly cares about the people she is recruiting and also understands the company’s need for excellence in personnel. She doesn’t just use job boards to find people.. she is a hunter!” Julie Gosnell Campbell, CTS, Account Manager, CN-tec