Jobspring Partners: Talent in Action

The Jobspring Experience


Category: Market News (58)

  • Recruiting for Tech In Chicago

    timprofessionalArticle by Tim Yandel, Regional Manager at Jobspring Partners: Chicago

    I thought I’d share a little bit about my experience recruiting in Chicago. Most of this is taken from a presentation I gave to budding entrepreneurs at 1871.

    The Chicago Tech Scene is…

    The Chicago Tech Scene is incredibly dispersed throughout many industries and everyone’s hiring. In fact, according to the Silicon Valley Bank, 90% of Software companies nationwide say they will be hiring for developers in 2013. A few other points include:

    So how do you stand apart and recruit top technical talent with all of this competition? First, let me just guess who you’re looking for without the buzz words for a second.

    • Someone young and hard working.
    • Someone who is incredibly smart and can adapt easily to new situations.
    • Someone who can relate to business users as well as technical people.
    • Someone who is passionate about technology and is proactively involved in the tech community.
    • Someone who would does this for fun and happens to get paid for it.
    • Someone who is motivated to be a part of a team.
    • Someone who wants to build something cool and challenging.

    Now let’s throw in those buzz words that you’re looking for as well.

    If you’re PHP you want:

    • Drupal 7, Zend, Object-Orientated Javascript, HTML5, CSS3

    If you’re RoR you want:

    • Object orientated coding experience, Rails 3.2, Cucumber, Rspec, Shoulda, CouchDB, MongoDB , Reddis, Git

    If you’re .NET you want:

    • C#, ASP.NET MVC 3/4, Telerik controls, jQuery, Javascript, JSON, LINQ, SSIS, SQL2K8 R2

    If you’re Java you want:

    • J2EE, Spring MVC, Lucene, Hadoop, Groovy on Grails, JSP, Javascript, jQuery

    Now let’s talk money, because after all, you may offer a cool collaborative environment but if you aren’t competitive with the market, you’re asking people to hold out on the hope of making it big. Basically the same thing every broke entrepreneur is telling the same developers. Let’s start out with the basic developer salaries without all of the latest and greatest technology.

     PHP Developer Salaries

    • 1 – 3 years of experience: $60K – $80K
    • 3 – 5 years of experience: $80K – $110K
    • 5+ years (with an O.O. background): $115K – $130K

    Front End Developer Salaries

    • 1 – 3 years of experience: $50K – $70K
    • 3 – 5 years of experience: $65K – $85K
    • 5+ years: $80K – $110K

    Ruby on Rails Developer Salaries

    • 1 – 3 years of experience with stability: $65K – $80K
    • 3+ years experience with stability: $70K – $110K

    Java Developer Salaries

    • 1 -3 years of experience: $60K – $80K
    • 3 -5 years of experience: $85K – $95K
    • 5years plus: $90K – 110K
    • 7+ years (Architect level): $105K – $135K

    .NET Developer Salaries

    • 1 -3 years of experience: $60K – $75K
    • 3 -5 years of experience:$70K – $95K
    • 5 years plus: $90K – 110K
    • 7+ years (Architect level): $105K – $135K

    Let’s talk about what the latest technology will cost you.

    The average salary for a junior / entry level (0-2 years) developer with an above average CS degree (think a Big Ten school) is: $55K – $65K. If you get someone with an elite education than they can pretty much write their own ticket.

    • Add in modern development languages such as object orientated PHP, RoR, Java or C# you can add $5K
    • Add modern web development frameworks we spoke about (Drupal, Cake PHP, MVC) you can add another $5K
    • For every 2 years of experience you add $5K
    • Now add someone with the soft skills you’re looking for and you can bump another $5K on top
    • That’s now $70K – $80K for a 0-2 year person and $85K – $95K for a 6-8 year developer with a decent degree

    This is starting to add up, right? Especially for entrepreneurs that are trying to bootstrap their start up and make things happen. Well, before you give up hope, I think you’re in great shape because the way you should always hire is to hire with an eye for potential. Yes, that’s right, hire someone without the skills.

  • The Need for Decisiveness

    Article by Ben Eisenberg, Lead Recruiter at Jobspring Partners: Washington DC. 

    Let’s face it. Finding and attracting the top developers and engineers in IT is difficult. To begin with, good IT people are scarce, which explains why there are thousands of IT recruiting agencies in business. However, some hiring managers may have been spoiled during the recession when it was largely a hiring manager’s market. Lots of qualified resumes sat on the job boards for weeks on end. Qualified jobseekers poured in by the bucket when companies posted an ad. 

    The IT professional market, much like the stock market, constantly ebbs and flows. One year, the supply of IT candidates can outpace demand, which was the case from 2008-2010. Just as suddenly, the tables can turn. With the recession all but over in the major technology hotbeds around the country, the job market has shifted and people have more options than they have had in years. Simply put, there are now more jobs than qualified candidates to fill them.

    Talented IT professionals now have multiple career opportunities being tossed their way at any given time. They are also spending less time on the job market since competition is so fierce. For hiring managers who insist on acquiring the best talent, having a quick hiring process and being able to move quickly is a must.

    If you are hiring for an engineer and your job has been open for longer than you would have hoped, take a look at your hiring process. Does it take more than two rounds for you to bring someone on board? Does it take more than three weeks between the first round and the time it takes to pull the trigger on a hiring decision? If so, you’re probably losing out on the best options simply because your process is too long.

    The longer a jobseeker is on the market, the more offers they are bound to entertain. Even a one week delay can be the difference between being able to hire the most talented person and them losing interest because something else comes along that catches their attention. This is when offers are turned down, or worse yet, when someone accepts and then doesn’t show on the first day.

    If you find someone you like, take action and do whatever is possible to speed up your hiring process so that person shuts down all other interview activity and your job is filled!

    Are you looking to fill a position in your tech department in the DC Metro area? Contact us today by calling 703-682-4000! 



  • Jobspring Partners' Weekly Market Knowledge Report

    Every Monday in our Jobspring offices around the country, the recruiters participate in “Market Knowledge” – a chance to share articles to inform the office about what is going on in the tech markets in our cities. Since we find this knowledge share so useful, we thought that we would start sharing some of these articles with our blog readers! So here are the articles that our cities found the most useful and informative this week:


    Disruptions: Medicine That Monitors You  (NY Times)

    Swallowable “pill” that is in fact a computer to help monitor your health.

    Submitted by: Ashley Elgatian

    Sony and Disney begin streaming movies still in theaters in a bold move against piracy  (The Verge)

    Disney and Sony have quietly begun testing an on-demand service in South Korea which offers movies to rent while they are still playing in theaters.

    Submitted by: Adam Canton

    Los Angeles

    Silicon Beach Fest highlights evolution of L.A.'s tech scene  (LA Times)

    If you were unable to attend Silicon Beach Fest, this article recaps the event for you!

    Submitted By: Charlotte Haun

    Orange County

    Jobless Rate Down to 5.5% in Orange County  (OC Business Journal)

    OC now has 1,428,900 jobs, a growth of nearly 2% over the past year, according to the state Employment Development Department.

    Submitted by:  David Belsky

    The Daily Muse Expands From A Community For Professional Women To "The Muse," A Career Destination For Everyone (TechCrunch)

    The Daily Muse is rebranding today to serve a wider audience and is going under the name The Muse now.

    Submitted by:  Brittani Allred

    San Francisco

    Instagram video vs Vine – What’s the difference? (Washington Post)

    Instagram has introduced Video. Will it compete with Vine and what’s the difference?  

    Submitted by: Caitlin Van Horn

    Changing the way you text  (Minnum)

    Instead of the traditional QWERTY keyword Minnum changed the keyboard into a horizontal row at the bottom of the screen.

    Submitted by: Kelly Wong

    Silicon Valley

    ‘Hell Is Other People’: An Anti-Social Network  (TIME Newsfeed)

    The slick new app helps you avoid everyone you know. The catch? First you have to share exactly where you are.

    Submitted by: Krystal Yu

    Snap Chat Raises 60 Million from IVP at 800 million valuation (Forbes)

    At 23, the CEO of SnapChat raised a $60 million Series B funding and now Snapchat is a $860 million dollar company.
    Submitted by Ronny Greer


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  • Will the Real Cloud Please Stand Up?

    By: Mark Eisenberg, Cloud Visionary and Former Member of Windows Azure Sales Team

    If you’re in the cloud business you will eventually hear this statement:

    “Everyone has their definition of the cloud.”

    I first heard this “way back” in 2009. I was a newcomer on the scene and I took it in without much thought. But my job at the time was selling one of these new cloud things and it only took me a few months to figure out that I could not have a cogent conversation about my cloud offering if everyone listening to me thought I was talking about something different than what they thought the cloud was. I shifted the discussion from the nuts, bolts, speeds, feeds, bits, and bytes of my offering and turned the conversation back to “What is The Cloud?”

    First stop – the semantic problems with any statement that begins “everyone has their definition of…”  A definition is by definition what a word means. And in order to arrive at a definition, a large group of people have to be in agreement. The statement above directly contradicts the intention of creating a definition. Many times this explanation will be greeted with “oh that’s just semantics”. Since semantics is the study of the meaning of words, I’m okay with this discussion being labeled as such.

    Next stop – finding a definition. Any vendor-based definition of a concept is going to be suspect. Being realistic, definitions driven by almost any interest group are going to show some bias. In the case of cloud computing, we are fortunate to have had the National Institutes of Standards and Technology, a government body, take on the task of sifting through all of the various definitions and finding the common ground. There were roughly 15 drafts of the definition before they arrived at The NIST Definition of Cloud Computing

    Is it the perfect definition? Nothing is perfect, but it is close in its simplicity and elegance. The wording of the actual definition could apply to many computing paradigms:

    “Cloud computing is a model for enabling ubiquitous, convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction.”

    The elegance lies in the five essential characteristics, four deployment models and three service models. I’ll list them here, but for the details you should visit the original source.

    Essential characteristics:

    1. On-demand self-service
    2. Broad network access
    3. Resource pooling
    4. Rapid elasticity
    5. Measured service

    The word “essential” is key. It means that in order for a thing to be a cloud, it must have at least these characteristics.

    Deployment models:

    1. Public
    2. Private
    3. Community
    4. Hybrid

    What is important to understand about the deployment models is a cloud implementation may choose any of these, but whichever one is chosen must still have the five essential characteristics. The definition does not fork between public and private clouds. They both have the same characteristics.

    Service models:

    1. Software as a Service (SaaS)
    2. Platform as a Service (PaaS)
    3. Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

    These represent different levels of abstraction from the “computing resources” mentioned in the definition. SaaS tends to represent the highest level of abstraction with IaaS the lowest. The choice of service model is highly dependent on the business needs of the cloud consumer.

    There is also knowledge to be gleaned from what is not in the definition:

    1. CapEx vs. OpEx exchange. Many believe that converting CapEx to OpEx is always a good thing. That is not always the case and thus it did not find its way in to the definition.
    2. Service orientation – being that there are three service models, one might think that service orientation is mandatory. It’s not. At least not as part of the definition. When getting down to the details of how to build in the cloud, service orientation is a core tool.

    So what does all of this mean? It means that everyone doesn’t have their own definition of the cloud. There is a definition of the cloud and we can all know what we are talking about when we refer to the thing that is the cloud. Just like we all know generally what we are referring to when we use the word hammer. And in the same way, that a hammer solved some problems better than a rock, the cloud solves some problems better than what came before it. It doesn’t solve every problem and sometimes it doesn’t even improve on the existing solutions. For a certain set of problems, it is the most effective solution available. And for a special set, it is the only solution available. But those are all topics for another post.

  • Jobspring Partners' Weekly Market Knowledge Report

    Every Monday in our Jobspring offices around the country, the recruiters participate in “Market Knowledge” – a chance to share articles to inform the office about what is going on in the tech markets in our cities. Since we find this knowledge share so useful, we thought that we could start sharing some of these articles with our blog readers! So here are the articles that our cities found the most useful and informative:


    Boston tech heats up: 5 firms collect $163M in a week (Boston Business Journal)

    Check out this list of newly funded companies in the Boston area.

    Submitted by: Ian Harris

    Microsoft Office comes to the iPhone (

    The availability of the Microsoft Office suite on the iPhone marks a significant milestone for Apple, since the Microsoft Office suite has only been available to Windows phone users up until this point.

    Submitted by: Allyson Parente


    Instagram Will Get Video On June 20  (TechCrunch)

    Submitted by: Nicholas Direso

    The Alternate Universe of Over-Employed Web Developers  (Mashable)

    The imbalance in supply and demand of developers causes them to be overpaid. Agree or Disagree?

    Submitted by:  Kevin Donoho

    Los Angeles

    Los Angeles ranks fourth in national clean tech leadership index (LA Times) Los Angeles ranked fourth among U.S. cities leading clean technology growth, according to research firm Clean Edge’s annual index.

    Submitted By: Paul Cutter

    Hands-free technology still distracting drivers (ABC - LA) Although hands-free technology is supposed to help drivers, it is actually more dangerous than we previously thought.

    Submitted By: Bryan Obeso

    Orange County

    High-tech turnout at InfoComm 2013(BizJournals)

    InfoComm has huge turnout at their event which was held at the Orange County Convention Center.

    Submitted by: Simon Asraf

    Greenwings Biomedical Launches Incubator(SoCalTech)

    Greenwigs Biomedical becomes first startup incubator in Los Angeles focused on biomedical.

    Submitted by:  Simon Asraf

    San Francisco

    Why PRISM kills cloud (Computerworld)

    PRISM program allows the US government to access Silicon Valley tech company’s data they receive from internet users around the world. 

    Submitted by: Kevin Logan

    Facebook introduces #Hashtags (TechCrunch)

    Silicon Valley

    How Big Data is Playing Recruiter for Specialized Workers (NY Times)

    A start up in San Francisco produces a big data algorithm that provides a proven tool to discovering hard to find engineering talent through various medias.

    Submitted by: Shana Cohen

    The British are coming to Silicon Valley (Techcrunch)

    A program is trying to help 15 UK students from 9 universities by giving them real-world startup experience with companies here in the Silicon Valley.

    Submitted by: Anthony Laden


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  • Jobspring Partners' Weekly Market Knowledge Report

    Each week in our Jobspring offices around the country, the recruiters participate in “Market Knowledge” – a chance to share articles to inform the office about what is going on in the tech markets in our cities. Since we find this knowledge share so useful, we thought that we could start sharing some of these articles with our blog readers! So here are the articles that our cities found the most useful and informative:


    Ruby VS PHP VS .NET  (Built In Chicago)

    Takes a look at three of the most popular languages/frameworks, and shares the pros and cons of working with each one.

    Submitted by:  Kevin McNamara

    Amazon Bets On Web Groceries, Expands AmazonFresh To L.A.  (TechCrunch)

    Amazon has today expanded its online grocery service AmazonFresh to it first non-Seattle market: Los Angeles.

    Submitted by:  Amy Gulyas & Alexander Yunk

    Los Angeles

    Creating a Mobile-Friendly Website in PHP ( This article discusses the ways to create a mobile-friendly website, their advantages and how to apply them.

    Submitted By: Sam Shaw

    Microsoft hypes next-gen Xbox One games at E3 (The Miami Herald) Microsoft focuses on how cloud computing will make games for its next-generation Xbox One console more immersive during their presentation at the Electronic Entertainment Expo.

    Submitted By: Adam Steinberg  

    New York

    Google Close to Acquiring Waze, a Rival in Maps (NY Times)

    Google’s looking to acquire Waze for 1 billion to ensure they stay on top of the mobile maps scene.

    Submitted by: Rory Smith

    Silicon Valley

    Amazon Bets on Web Groceries   (Tech Crunch)

    Amazon is taking a major step in getting their grocery delivery service to market.

    Submitted by:  Robbie Roesser

    Time for Apple to Start Treating Us Like Adults   (Tech Crunch)

    There are rumors that Apple iOS will eventually become obsolete.

    Submitted by:  Danny Cavero


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  • Jobspring Partners' Weekly Market Knowledge Report

    Every Monday in our Jobspring offices around the country, the recruiters participate in “Market Knowledge” – a chance to share articles to inform the office about what is going on in the tech markets in our cities. Since we find this knowledge share so useful, we thought that we could start sharing some of these articles with our blog readers!

    So here are the articles that our cities found the most useful and informative:


    Russian startup’s Kinect-like hardware aims to help the blind ditch walking sticks (VentureBeat)

    The Russian based startup, Oriense, is working on a device that would alert the visually impaired with an audio signal when an object or person is in their path.

    Submitted by: Kieran Carr Get ready for .google and .apple (CNN)

    Thanks to the Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) domain names soon will no longer be confined to .net, .com, or .org surnames.

    Submitted by: Emily Swartz


    Grainger plans to add 300 jobs as it expands downtown  (Chicago Business Journal)

    W.W. Grainger Inc. plans to expand its downtown Chicago office and add up to 300 new jobs as part of plans to boost its technology capabilities and Internet sales.

    Submitted by: Michael Creevan

    Gmail's new killer feature: Spam blocking 2.0  (CNN Money)

    Over the next week, millions of Gmail users will notice that something's changed. Just like the web browser containing it, Gmail will have tabs.

    Submitted by: Amy Gulyas

    Los Angeles

    Debugging Windows Forms Controls Created with Visual Basic .NET or Visual C# .NET (

    This article shares the basics on how to debug your user controls, by creating a host application for them to run in.

    An Absolute Beginner's Tutorial on Cross Site Scripting(XSS) Prevention in ASP.NET(

    This article explains what exactly Cross Site Scripting(XSS) is, and how to prevent XSS attacks in an ASP.NET website.

    Submitted by: Paul Cutter

    New York

    Kozmos 2.0 PostMates Launches In New York City (Forbes)

    With PostMates, anything you want can be delivered to your doorstep under an hour; starting at $5.

    Submitted by: Emily Baumgartner

    Silicon Valley

    High School Student Creates Storage Device that can Charge in 20 Seconds  (Dailytech)

    An 18 year old high school student out of Saratoga just developed a storage device that can charge your cell phone in 20 seconds, winning her $50,000 dollars.

    Submitted by:  Ben Kuncz

    Say Goodbye To Ugly Newsletters, Stamplia Launches Its Email Templates Marketplace (Techcrunch)

    Stamplia is an email template market place where web designers can sell their HTML templates that will help with all kinds of verticals in dealing with creating visually appealing newsletters.

    Submitted by:  Andy Lee

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  • Hiring Managers: Are You Missing This Important Concept?

    By Practice Manager: Sandra Zawacki at Jobspring Partners, Washington DC

    I’ve been married for eight years, have a full time job that I love, and a rambunctious three year old with another on the way. Let’s just say compromise is a common theme in my house! It’s also a topic that has been increasingly important to discuss with my clients as the job market in DC has made its comeback over the last twelve+ months. Just as it can be in one’s personal relationships, compromise is not always pleasant or enjoyable, but it is necessary for any significant long term success.

    So, hiring managers: listen up!

    According to an article published in the Washington Post on May 29th, the regional unemployment rate in the DC metro area is currently around 5.3%, well below the national average. Within IT specifically, the numbers are even lower and we have been seeing a huge uptick in hiring month after month since mid-year 2012. This means that if you are a local company looking for great talent in software development, systems engineering or anything else IT related, you are not alone!

    Every company I speak to is looking for the “A-player”, the guy coming out of a top 50 engineering school with all the latest technical buzz words and fantastic client-facing abilities (ideally only looking to make very little money). The challenge is that with high demand and a very limited pool of candidates out there, you have to be willing to re-define what an “A-player” means if you want to stand a chance of filling your job.

    Enter compromise! 

    Technical skills

    In a tight candidate market, the first thing you have to be willing to be flexible on is "required skills" vs "beneficial skills". The average job description includes at least 12 must have skills or technologies; non-negotiable check boxes. (No wonder so many positions remain open for months on end!)The list for the latter should far exceed the prior. As you look at your current employees, it can surely be hard to imagine someone being able to work on the team unless they walk through the door with all the relevant skills, but you have to be willing to look for potential.

    Is it possible that if a candidate has used a tool similar to what you use, that they could learn yours quickly?

    Is the methodology they’ve used really that different from whatever you prefer?

    Does someone have the aptitude to grow their skills in areas they are currently more junior in?

    The bulk of your interview should consist of evaluating whether you could mentor and grow someone into exactly what you want them to be in a few months’ time, rather than asking textbook questions designed to screen people out. Having someone walk in on day one, who knows your technical environment to a T, is an expert at every technology you use, and can easily do the job might sound ideal, but consider this: why would they stay with your company long term? If there is nothing left for them to learn, they’ll finish the project and move on to a company where they feel challenged.

    Hiring Process

    I hear it all the time: “we have a 4 step interview process in place to ensure we hire the right person and this is just the way we do it here”. Good for you, but while you are taking two to three weeks to herd candidates through your multiple rounds of interviews, your competition is picking up the best talent before you can get candidates in for finals.  Most candidates are getting multiple offers in a matter of 5-7 business days, so in order to be competitive you have to evaluate your process and maximize each interaction with the candidate you are interested in.

    Companies who understand the idea of momentum and who quickly get candidates through 1-2 rounds of interviews in a matter of days will usually garner more interest from the candidate. Drawn out processes suggests that your company has a lot of red tape to navigate, that the requirements have not been clearly defined, or that you are just not that interested. Additionally, the more face-time you can get with them the better, so whether you are working with an agency or using your internal recruiter, trust their screening. If they like the person, bring them in for a 30 minute interview! Follow that up with one more lengthier, in-person meeting where you include anyone relevant to the decision making and be ready to make a verbal offer within a day if you like them.


    I get it, education is important and certainly graduating from a great school is a big accomplishment. But the definition of education in the fast-moving world of IT has evolved to also include how entrenched you are in the tech community, how many hours you put in on your own while testing new tools, and the skills you picked up in your previous positions. Let’s not pretend that the only way to be successful in the business/IT world is by obtaining a four year degree. I think the founders of some of the most successful IT companies around would beg to differ. Speak to the person to determine fit instead of screening their resume simply because they don’t have a degree listed.

    Years of experience

    This one is simple: try not to fixate on a certain number when determining how many years of experience someone needs to have to qualify for your open position. I frequently come across organizations who have determined that in order to qualify for a “senior” role, a person has to have X number of years of experience. Shouldn’t what someone has learned in those years be more relevant?

    Be open to the idea that someone with fewer years could have worked in places where they accumulated a ton of relevant experience and don’t discriminate against a more experienced looking resume because they might be too “old” for your cool culture. You never know if that is the person who plays in a band or is a master at Call of Duty. Speak to the person before you screen the resume.


    Name one person who doesn’t love a good deal? Most companies want to keep salary caps low while finding the “perfect” candidate.  When candidates are receiving multiple offers, you have to be willing to spend what the market dictates even if you feel like the person “doesn’t check every box” or you believe that someone with only a few years “shouldn’t make that much”. If your budget is fixed with no room for flexibility, well, then you’ll have to be willing to flex your compromising muscle even more when it comes to the categories outlined above.

    Finally, it’s ok to have a few non-negotiables. Always make sure that your new hire displays willingness and eagerness to learn. If you have compromised on your job description/qualifications they will probably need to pick up a few new skills and so desire to do so is crucial for short-term and long-term success. Speak to their references to ensure that they were reliable, conducted themselves with integrity, and that their work ethic is in line with what you expect from your employees. If you hire people with these qualities while applying the flexible approach discussed above, you will put your business in a position to grow and succeed and keep your employees happy longer!

    To hear more from Sandra, follow her on twitter: @SandraZawacki 

    In the market for a new tech job? Check out our latest open positions

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