Photo courtesy of Alkami Technology.
Talent Acquisition & HR Programs Specialist Akiko Bremar loves recruiting because it allows her to help others navigate their career paths and witness them climb to success. And she says there’s not a more encouraging place to watch others grow than Alkami Technology.
Bremar, a recruiter with an agency background and passion for helping others as a licensed professional counselor, says Alkami’s dedication to its values of Optimistic-Perseverance and Caring-Collaboration make it an especially positive place with an inherent growth mindset. And despite the struggles COVID-19 has posed to the world, Alkami continues to flourish.
As someone who’s hiring right now, Bremar shared her best advice for women currently on the job hunt, including the virtual networking opportunities they should take advantage of. She also shared more about Alkami Technology and what she is looking for in candidates. Much of her advice boils down to the values above: Perseverance, optimism and vision.
How long have you been in your current role, and what were you doing previously?
I have been a corporate recruiter at Alkami since early July. Previously, I came from a staffing agency background and was focused on hiring technical professionals for various clients in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. In addition to recruiting, I am also a licensed professional counselor and I spend my weekends working with individuals who struggle with mental health and substance abuse.
What’s the first (and/or last) thing you do at work every day?
I review my calendar and to-do list first thing every morning; I review my checked and unchecked boxes and plan for my next day every evening. Thanks to a Be-Well benefit offered by Alkami, I also begin my mornings with an instructor-led mindfulness meditation, which has helped significantly with focusing my priorities and developing a more grateful mindset.
What is your favorite part of working in recruiting?
I absolutely love working with people during major transitional periods in their lives, helping them navigate their career paths and being a continued resource for them as they grow professionally and personally over time.
As a recruiter, what are three things about Alkami that you always make sure to highlight when talking to a candidate?
What’s one thing Alkami does — whether a formal policy or program, or more in terms of office culture — that you think is particularly unique or unexpected?
There is no formal policy or program that asks employees for the commitment to foster a positive environment, yet, somehow, Alkami has the most supportive environment that I have ever witnessed and been a part of. Our culture is naturally positive; we naturally draw positive people. It’s unique and refreshing to find so many individuals from varying walks of life who are all dedicated to helping one another grow.
As a recruiter, what are the top 3 qualities you look for in a candidate?
Passion: I look for a certain drive and energy in all of my candidates. I know how draining and discouraging a long job search can be but the people who maintain their stamina really do stick out.
Self-Assurance: I look for people who know what they can do and love talking about it. This falls in line with passion and does not breach the territory of arrogance. Everyone comes from a background that is unique to them and I look for people who own their experiences.
Communication: I look for people who can effectively and efficiently tell me about their previous experiences and their future goals.
What virtual resources or networking opportunities would you recommend to job seekers?
For software developers specifically, I recommend CodeWars for practicing and developing programming skills. For women in tech, I recommend the networking group Women Who Code.
What’s your #1 piece of advice for women who are looking for jobs right now?
Love and own your worth. Beyond knowing and asking for what you want and deserve — in terms of salary, ideal work environment, what you’re looking for in a boss, accepted commute time, job duties and expectations — be kind to yourself during this job search because you already know that you are a woman of worth. The company that best fits you will see this as well.
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