With top candidates staying on the market for 10 days or less, locating and hiring qualified talent is becoming increasingly difficult in the tech industry. Recruiters and hiring managers know the best architects, engineers, and developers are on the market for a matter of hours, not days. Gone are the times of making a hiring decision between top candidates over the course of several weeks or months, leaving employers in need of a fresh approach to traditional hiring methods. In today’s candidate-driven market, having a partner who can represent your brand, speak for your culture, and effectively source hard-to-fill positions is priceless.
Enter the value of retained search. Formerly considered only an option for hiring executives, retained search within the technology industry is providing hiring managers the opportunity to focus on their core business objectives while gaining a business partner who delivers quality candidates to the pipeline.
A Fresh Approach
Traditionally, retained search has been used to fill high profile, executive-level positions. The tech industry is breaking this mold by expanding it to include all levels of technical roles, from entry level to the C-suite. Companies realize technical engineers, developers, and designers at every level play a significant role in their organization. They’ve seen first-hand the value of swiftly implementing a first-rate candidate and what it can mean for future growth both technically and culturally. Retaining a recruiting firm ensures the same speed and quality you should expect from a contingency-based partnership but takes the level of consultancy one step farther.
Drew Sussberg, Vice President of Client Services at Motion Recruitment Partners, had this to say about retained search in the tech industry:
"Companies are looking for a business partner who can become an extension of the organization. They want to build a relationship with us because we have a proven history of delivering quality talent regardless of experience level or technical vertical, thanks to our specialized, localized, and team-based approach."
Advantages of Retained Search
When companies have exhausted their internal recruiting resources, they often see value in outsourcing hiring for open positions. However, working with multiple recruiting firms can be draining. At best, the phone rings off the hook with recruiters pitching their qualified (or even unqualified) candidates, inboxes overflow with resumes, and the interview process becomes all-consuming until a hire is made. At worst, hiring for open positions cuts into the time spent working on projects, decreasing production-levels and triggering missed deadlines, without yielding a long-term hire. With retained search, companies commit to partnering with one recruiting firm who understands the culture and business needs, which cuts down on the time hiring managers spend reviewing resumes and interviewing mediocre candidates.
Most companies task their internal recruitment or procurement teams with finding talent across a wide range of positions while adhering to a strict hiring process and set of internal guidelines. With today’s candidate-driven tech market, those hiring processes will often operate too slowly to secure top tech talent, resulting in the loss of valuable production time as the search continues. Retaining a personalized hiring consultant takes the guesswork out of the process, making the talent search much more targeted and efficient.
Retained search is especially valuable when it comes to bulk hiring, for which a retained search agreement usually supplies a discounted rate, as an agency partner can fill multiple positions quickly for the company. From engaging candidates with a job opportunity to hiring them, a specialized agency averages 10 days to placement. In turn, companies are less likely to miss out on top talent, which cuts down on revenue lost through the unfilled role.
Quality of Hire
In 2017, unemployment among technology professionals has dropped to 2.5%, and high-demand candidates go off the market in under two weeks. A dedicated recruitment partner has access to engage the higher quality talent whether on or off the market. Passive candidates are unlikely to be exposed to opportunities through job boards and other more traditional recruiting methods. They’re much more likely to find their new role through word-of-mouth or networking, and a specialized recruiting firm engages their expansive network to target them. Retaining a specialized recruitment partner ensures priority with a first look at that qualified talent. This is especially valuable when filling niche, but critical roles.
Curious how retained search could help your organization reach its hiring goals? Sign up here for a free consultation.
Retained search is revolutionizing the tech staffing industry by building partnerships between recruiting agencies and organizations with sights set toward both short-term and long-term goals. It eliminates much of the risk associated with filling important positions internally because getting it wrong can set a project back months (or longer) and have significant revenue consequences for the business. Retained search offers exclusive access to a large pool of qualified, passive candidates often at a discounted rate. It can be employed for a single placement or a batch of hires and depending on the agreement, can provide a guarantee of service and/or quality. Under a retainer, a recruiting agency becomes an extension of an organization’s hiring arm and can be a powerful and efficient tool ensuring technical hiring needs are met.
While looking for the next opportunity or evaluating your current one, there are so many factors to consider that you might overlook a company’s diversity practices, despite an increasing public spotlight on the topic. However, with even Silicon Valley role models such as Facebook falling short of their ambitious diverse hiring goals, it’s no surprise that diversity initiatives are making it on to the radar of companies and candidates regardless of industry or size. Many companies are choosing to build diversity objectives into their core concepts, impacting everything from the hiring process to employer branding.
Recent findings in industry trends are showing that diverse hiring is more far-reaching than one would think. Companies who instill these values from day one tend to be rated higher for intangibles, such as overall employee satisfaction. From the bottom-line to notoriety and resume boosters, here are three reasons why working for a company who values diversity is a smart career move:
1. Financial success. While diversity and inclusion might not seem like issues that would impact the budget, current trends have shown otherwise. A 2015 McKinsey & Company study found that companies with greater gender diversity and ethnic diversity are respectively 15% and 35% more likely to have financial returns above the national industry medians. PagerDuty, a Silicon Valley favorite, made headlines last year for hiring their first female CEO and has since received their largest funding round yet. In a similar success story, JellyVision, recent winner of a Best Tech Workplace for Diversity Timmy Award, has almost reached gender-parity within the organization and recently raised $20M in funding. Consumers and investors vote with their dollars, and working for a company that values diversity can provide you a financially stable workplace.
2. Work environment. Having a variety of decision makers at the table leads to forward thinking business solutions, and working in an environment that exposes you to this is a great way to develop your career. Collaborating with colleagues from diverse backgrounds provides a voice to uncharted ideas, opens the door to innovative problem-solving processes, and gives a unique perspective to the discussion. Additionally, most companies who have these values provide continued learning programs and educational seminars to encourage employees to further their knowledge. While a forward-thinking work environment can be more challenging than a typical workplace, it will open the door to invaluable career experience you might not otherwise receive.
Interested in a new opportunity in the tech industry? Click here for a list of our open roles.
3. Industry leadership. Being a part of a company that receives attention for diversity efforts can be just as valuable as working at one known for the most revolutionary technology – in terms of what makes a desirable candidate background. The placement of a forward-thinking company on your resume will always catch a hiring manager’s eye, and being a thought leader in diversity is no different. For instance, your credibility rises working for an industry leader such as Lever, which is highly praised for having a 50:50 gender ratio and recently got a barrage of positive press surrounding their 2017 Diversity and Inclusion Handbook. A variety of awards have been created to honor employers’ efforts, and Jobspring Partner’s own Tech in Motion event series launched the “Timmy Awards” to recognize great work cultures across the nation – even adding an award to recognize diversity and inclusion this year. Ensuring that companies are recognized for their workplace achievements not only encourages innovation, but also extends the benefit to employees who have been part of the development.
While all job seekers might have a long list of boxes to check off when searching for a new role, adding a box for diversity will aid you in finding the best work environment to further your career. Diversity can impact everything in a business from funding to employee satisfaction and is a smart item to keep on your “must-have” list as you make your next career move.
No one wants to play from behind. Whether in sports, projects for work, and especially in their job search. Think about it like this: in IT, it’s encouraged to approach systems proactively. Therefore, wouldn’t it make sense to approach your career the same way? Too often, Jobspring Partners has seen extremely competent candidates unexpectedly laid off, from no fault of their own, who come through our doors desperate for a role that fits their skillset. At that point, the candidate is playing from behind, when they could have been proactive and taken the power in their own hands before becoming unemployed.
Be Proactive- Start Your Job Search Today!
Had this candidate simply considered working their network and remaining connected with their closest peers to stay updated on openings in the market, they could have positioned themselves a bit better in case of the emergency that ultimately did happen. Like most things in life, the best time to prepare for the worst is before the worst can happen.
If you need more convincing, below are a few of the reasons why you should be looking for a new role while you are still working for your current employer:
The Benefit of Time on Your Side
Think critically: how long could you truly support yourself and your dependents without a reliable income? Is that two months, six months, one year? Regardless of the length, this is the maximum amount of time you will have to find a suitable replacement position once you’ve left your current role. However, if you begin looking while you’re already gainfully employed, your timeframe for finding a new role increases exponentially. Without being taunted by upcoming bills without an income, you can focus your search on a position that excites you or will drastically improve your career trajectory rather than just attempting to make ends meet.
Get Busy Working or…
Time and time again we’ve been told by hiring managers that the best candidates are the ones who are actively working. After all, employed candidates are continually proving themselves as assets to their current company. A notable quote from “The Shawshank Redemption” says, ‘Get busy living or get busy dying’ and the job market is the same way. If you’re not showing yourself in the day-to-day as employable and beneficial to a company, you will be making it harder on yourself to find a new job as time goes on!
Visit your local Jobspring Partners today to start finding your dream job!
Not Under Pressure
Have you ever wanted or needed something so badly that when you were put into a situation wherein you could get whatever it was that you wanted or needed, the pressure was simply so much that you botched your attempt to get it? Unfortunately, this happens quite often during interviews when one is facing unemployment. Contrast this with interviewing while you already have a comfortable employment situation: you will be taking a significant amount of pressure off yourself and will ultimately lessen the likelihood of self-sabotage while interviewing for the new role!
Get What You Really Want
What You Really Really Want
Finally, if you’re interviewing while currently employed, you’ll have more control over dictating your final offer! The same factors apply here as they did above, but the final offer now needs to be better than your current for you to leave your job. This doesn’t have to come down solely to money, but everything in terms of compensation should line up – focus on the total package that the company offers. Not only will you have the upper-hand to hit that higher salary number, but you can also potentially leverage your current job to get additional vacation time, flexible hours, stock options, equity, or a myriad of other perks that can be included when the offer is extended!
So, if you find yourself in a position that isn’t perfect or you feel the winds of change approaching, make sure to keep your eyes and ears open to all new and exciting opportunities. With the benefit of time, it may even be correct to call your localized and specialized recruiter, and make an appointment with them. They may open doors for you that you never thought possible!
In today’s technology driven world, change happens fast. We’ve come to expect it. If you’re someone who thrives on exploring solutions to new challenges, why should your career path be any different? Over the past five years contracting has seen a steady rise in popularity among tech companies because of the opportunities it offers both job seekers and employers.
Contracting Offers Unique & Flexible Job Opportunities
The technology industry is currently seeing its lowest ever unemployment rate, opening the door to fulltime and contract employees alike. More and more candidates are turning to contracting to build their resumes, work with Fortune 500 companies, and help with their work life balance. Jennifer Grasz at Career Builder has this to say about the future of contracting, “The demand for temporary labor will continue to be strong as employers strive to have more flexibility in their staff levels. 51% of employers plan to hire temporary or contract workers in 2017, an increase from 47% last year. 63% of employers plan to transition some temporary or contract workers into permanent roles in 2017, up from 58% last year.”
Do you want to spend more time with family during the holidays and summer vacation? Click to find a seasonal contracting opportunity in a city near you!
You Can Earn More as a Contractor
One of the biggest misconceptions about tech contract jobs is they pay less on average than fulltime positions. While it’s true that fulltime employees make a yearly salary and contractors get paid by the hour, there are many other factors to take into consideration when calculating your potential earnings. For instance, if you work more than 40 hours in a week as a fulltime employee, you won’t be paid for your extra effort while contractors get paid 1.5x their hourly wage for overtime. This can have a huge impact, especially in the tech industry where employees often work extended hours.
Enjoy Benefits as Contractor
Surprise! The biggest misconception about tech contracting is that you won’t receive benefits from your employer. The reality is, as a contractor with Jobspring Partners, you are eligible to receive benefits that kick in after thirty days of employment. You accrue sick days beginning on day one of employment. Want to start investing for your retirement? You are eligible for the Jobpspring Partners 401K and will be automatically enrolled after the first 6 months of the contract assignment. Full health coverage including dental and vision insurance kicks in after 30 days of your start date. In addition, there is an option to use a Health savings account to put away money for your health plan every month that is pre-taxed. Beyond these basic benefits, you can also enjoy commuter benefits you can use for parking, public transit, metro, or bus.
Make the money you deserve and explore contracting opportunities in a city near you.
Use Contracting to Improve your Tech Stack
Contracting gives engineers the opportunity to focus on newer technologies, increasing their value as a subject matter experts in niche tech fields and opening themselves up to more lucrative opportunities in the future. It’s a great opportunity to get your foot in the door with tech giants who are only looking to hire contractors. Employers love seeing candidates with diverse backgrounds working on unique projects. We like to call them “unicorns” in our industry.
What Employers Gain from Contracting
The contracting model gives qualified candidates the freedom to develop their skillsets while being exposed to many different projects, technologies and work environments. But it also offers unforeseen benefits to employers looking for qualified talent. It gives them the opportunity to have “try-outs” for contractors hoping to find a permanent position and allows them to bring in highly specialized engineers on a project-basis they wouldn’t ordinarily be able to afford fulltime.
For all these reasons, contracting has never been a more viable option in the tech industry than it is today. There are many misconceptions about contracting in the tech industry. That’s why it’s important to do your own research, weighing the pros and cons of contracting versus fulltime. The results could surprise you!
With the lowest average employee tenure among leading industries at about three years, building your own brand in the tech industry has never been more important than it is today. “You should devote about 5% of your time to high-leverage marketing activities,” says Anthony Fasano, Executive Director of The Engineering Career Coach. In an ever-evolving tech climate, it’s important to stay in-the-know and position yourself as a desirable a candidate as possible so that when the next big opportunity comes your way, you’re ready to take advantage of it.
Whether you’re a seasoned professional or fresh out of a coding camp, here are some tips, tools, and resources to help amplify your personal brand:
Targeted Networking – Rubbing shoulders with established tech managers and recruiters is one of the most effective ways to stand out in the job market hay stack. When you meet someone, you’re being indirectly introduced to their network as well. Before most jobs are posted online, they’re filled either internally or through a professional reference. One study conducted by the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) claims referrals are five times more likely to be hired than job post respondents. Another study found that as much as 70% of open tech jobs will not be posted given the uniqueness of the tech job market. Not only attending, but also speaking at technology meetups is an efficient way to jump start your targeted networking effort. It helps position you as a thought leader in the local community and presents warm entry points with influencers in attendance.
Check out our events calendar for free local tech networking and speaking opportunies!
Sloane Barbour, Regional Director of Jobspring Partners New York, has additional insight on what qualifies candidates as thought leaders:
“To be considered a thought leader, candidates would need to have significant contributions to a popular open source framework, have written and published a notable book for developers, or have spoken at a prominent conference.” - Sloane Barbour, Regional Director of Jobspring Partners New York
Aggregate Your Online Portfolio – Publish projects on platforms like GitHub, HackerRank, Kaggle, and BitBucket. These projects will provide hiring managers with valuable insight in regards to your thought process as an engineer. Is the project clearly described? Does the project leverage open source libraries and frameworks? Is the code well-organized? How many completed projects are in the portfolio? How often are new projects uploaded?
Build a Personal Website – This serves as your brand’s home base and a soapbox to showcase your skillset. According to Workfolio, 56% of all hiring managers are more impressed by a candidate’s personal website than any other personal branding tool. About.me is another valuable online tool to present who you are and what you do in a comprehensive and appealing fashion.
Looking for your next career move? Check out our job board for local opportunities!
Lead Online Discussions – Contributing to forum discussions, webinar chats, and online communities can also help develop your extended network and provide access to decision makers and thought leaders that you’d have never met otherwise. Popular platforms include LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Quora and Reddit, some of which you can also publish your own original content on. Writing articles as a contributor to platforms such as Business Insider, The Muse, Medium, Forbes, or technical publications can also spark the conversation and grow your impact as a subject matter expert.
Tailor Your Resume – Your resume should be adjusted for each job you apply to. Emphasize the most relevant skills required for the job in your summary, skills section and in your work experience. The ideal resume length is one to two pages, so avoid cluttering it with irrelevant experience. It should be easy to navigate and reflect your ability to provide a solution for a current business need, as well as showcase any subject matter expert contributions you've made as a thought leader.
Collect Professional Reviews –Professional reviews from past co-workers, managers and clients can help separate you from the rest of the pack by building trust and credibility. Position them prominently on your website and link back to them on your job search collateral. Only reviews from friends and family are trusted more than online reviews, according to research done by Vendesta.
While all of the above methods are effective, utilizing even one or two should prove beneficial. It’ll take time, effort and patience, but the end result will be a steady flow of relevant information for your next job search and an ever-expanding network of influencers and decision makers alike.
Jobspring Partners' Silicon Valley office has been selected for the 2017 Best of San Jose Award in the Employment Agency category by the San Jose Award Program.
Each year, the San Jose Award Program identifies companies that they believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community. These exceptional companies help make the San Jose area a great place to live, work and play.
"It's an honor to recieve the "2017 Best of San Jose" award. We've worked hard to build a positive reputation in the recruiting industry and our local community," says Jason Cooper, Division Manager of Jobspring Partners in Silicon Valley. "We appreciate the recognition and will strive to continue providing superior service to our clients and candidates here in Silicon Valley."
The winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the San Jose Award Program and data provided by third parties. Recognition is given to those companies that have shown the ability to use their best practices and implemented programs to generate competitive advantages and long-term value.
The San Jose Award Program is an annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of local businesses throughout the San Jose area. Their mission is to recognize the small business community's contributions to the U.S. economy.
With over 400 highly specialized tech recruiting professionals across North America, our agency experts know firsthand how people think and act during the hiring process. Our 2016 research study debunks the biggest misperceptions for tech job seekers and offers helpful advice on how to navigate today’s competitive job market. Here are the four most common myths you should know:
Myth 1: “If I don’t have all the required skills, I shouldn’t bother applying for the job.”
Advice from the experts: “Know where you stand and act accordingly. If you’re less qualified, be prepared to make your business case upfront on your resume or cover letter as to why they should still consider you. Always apply to jobs even if you are not sure since you are applying to the company (not just the job). Other jobs may exist that will be a better fit. Also, job specs can be very fluid in tech and some companies can/will adjust requirements and provide training for the right person.”
Check out which companies are hiring by applying to one of our many tech jobs online!
Myth 2: “If I’ve been a job hopper, potential employers will not consider me for the position.”
Advice from the experts: “It’s not the WHEN, it’s the WHY that counts most when explaining job hopping to a potential employer. There are many completely understandable reasons for leaving a job after a short period of time. Make sure to specify any of these acceptable reasons for leaving directly on the resume to avoid any negative stigmas.”
Read why "Don't be afraid to try different things" is tip #3 in "5 Tips For Young Professionals Who Want a Career in Tech"
Myth 3: “If the company has no job postings online, then they must not be hiring.”
Advice from the experts: “The elusiveness of the tech job market means that candidates should never rely on job boards alone. They should leverage their networks as much as possible and also work with a localized, specialized tech recruiter who uncovers these hidden jobs on a daily basis.”
Let us help you discover your dream job - Contact a Jobspring Partners in a city near you!
Myth 4: “If I’m the leading candidate for a Perm position, I should be able to negotiate my starting offer as high as I’d like.”
Advice from the experts: “As highly qualified as a tech candidate may be, there is and will always be competition. A candidate’s savvy negotiation and education on the marketplace (via salary reports) is expected from employers. But when candidates exhibit indulgence or entitlement in regards to a potential offer, their well-intentioned actions could backfire on them.”
Find out the Expectations versus Realities of Working in Tech
There are several myths out there about the tech job market, but the key is to identify these myths and not fall into the trap that many other job seekers may unknowingly fall into. To sum up, (1) if you’re less qualified, be prepared to make your business case upfront as to why a company should still consider you; (2) if you’re a job hopper, be sure to specify acceptable reasons for leaving on your resume to avoid negative stigmas; (3) never rely on job boards alone, instead, leverage your network and work with a specialized tech recruiter in your city; and (4) don’t be that candidate who exhibits indulgence or entitlement in regards to a potential offer – it could backfire on you.
Contact a local Jobspring Partners today and let us help you kick off 2017 on the right foot.
With the tech-industry unemployment rate dropping to an impressive 2% nation-wide in 2016, it is easy to understand why hiring managers and human resource departments alike are experiencing heart-ache when thinking about tech hiring initiatives this year. Having worked with a few military veterans throughout his career Del Crockett, Regional Director of Jobspring D.C., gives us three great reasons why companies should hire veterans to address their biggest hiring problems.
As a high technology recruiter for the last decade, I have seen my fair share of hiring markets over the years and I can easily say that today's hiring landscape is the most difficult I have seen in my career for companies to navigate. Quite simply, we are looking at an Economics 101 problem to the max degree: High demand and nearly zero supply.
In an attempt to curtail the depressing amount of supply on the market, numerous development boot camps have popped up in an attempt to teach non-technical professionals to become developers. Although that has been questionably effective, it got me thinking, what about our military veteran resources out there? How are we overcoming common misperceptions and utilizing their unique skill set to impact technical hiring agendas?
The squeeze on the technical talent pool has not only forced companies to broaden their technical expectattions, but also take into serious consideration the "soft skills" and/or "intagibles" that can end up making a candidate a fantastic hire over the long term.
Over the last few years, companies have started to make that exact adjustment. I am regularly seeing companies make offers based as much on intangible soft skills as they are technical abilities. With that trend inevitably growing as the market continues to tighten, it is a great time to be looking at our veteran's as a high quality option to fill technical roles.
1. Prospective tech candidates do not fit the team culture
Company Feedback: If I had a dollar for every time I received feedback from a hiring manager stating that a candidate was "technically great, but not the right culture fit"...The truth is that culture fit is beyond critical, especially for small to medium sized companies. Most clients I work with will overlook some technical ability to find someone with a "go-getter" attitude that is ready to learn. In a hiring landscape dominated by more and more candidates feeling entitled due to the current demand, it's not unusual to see hiring managers pause when faced with the decision on someone who might be a detriment to the team/company culture.
Why hire a veteran: Teamwork and trainability are possibly a veteran's best attributes. Early on, those in the military learn that in order to become a good leader, one most be a good follower. Rising through the ranks is a right of passage that must be earned and the same can be said in most companies. Finding a candidate who believes in these concepts will ultimately benefit the growth of the teams, its operation, and overall retention rates.
2. Prospective candidates lack experience executing under pressure
Company Feedback: Let's face it: Programming environments have their moments of being high pressure, there is no way around it. Start-ups? How about every day! With the typical development team working on a two-week sprint cycle, the ability to handle deadlines calmly is as critical as the quality of code you put out. Similar to coaches, hiring managers love finding job seekers who they can count on, come crunch time. Not everyone has the mental strength to execute come "crunch time" on a consistent basis. You're either clutch or you're not.
Why hire a veteran: Needless to say, veterans have become accustomed to making important decisions (sometimes life dependent) for themselves and their team under the most intense situations. The ability to solve problems under the most unparalleled circumstances is a quality that every hiring manager can use, especially at start-ups.
Are you a veteran looking for a job? Apply to a job in D.C. or a city near you!
3. Prospective candidates are too "big picture" focused and lack attention to detail
Company Feedback: With famed companies such as Facebook and Google constantly re-shaping the technical landscape, it is understandable that many of today's candidates can find themselves getting hyper-focused on today's "hottest new technology." Unfortunately, for many hiring managers, that latest technology may or may not be a critical element in their current production enviornment. Even when it is, many candidates only understand the overarching general concepts rather than the in-depth details on the "why" and "how" the technology can be utilized in a real production environment. This inability leaves companies vulnerable to low quality code and implementation, causing bugs, delay, and often-times, resentment within the team ranks.
Why hire a veteran: Officers and soldiers in the field are trained to keep an impeccable sense of detail with everything they do. From the way they dress and keep quarters, to addressing tiny logistical details on the battlefield, veterans are trained to embrace the responsibility of always being meticulous, while working towards the big picture. This is a trait that is nearly impossible to find in today's hiring market. Considering that the slightest mistake in a line of code can be the difference between a product being received well from users and the same product totally failing due to bugs or security concerns, having staff who embrace "getting lost in the details" can make all the difference.
According to Joseph Kernan, NS2 Serves Chairman and Vice Admiral (Ret.), U.S. Navy, in an article from the Business Journal, "Hiring a veteran not only provides your company with a devoted employee who has the potential to become a highly productive member of the team, but you're also giving a deserving veteran a fresh start in post-military life and a chance at a fulfilling career." Looking to hire a veteran? Contact Jobspring here so we can help find you the right talent for the job.
Ready to start job searching? Here are some resources to help guide you to a job you'll love: