Advice from HR on Landing a Tech 'Dream Job'
Fortune, who loves to feature rankings of companies, has a good online piece about what HR people look for in potential job candidates. The five companies profiled are part of the broader ranking of "Best Companies to Work For," so you know that this is up to snuff since it comes from employees.
Three of the five profiled have a technology bend to them, with a fourth--CH2M Hill--being purely engineering. The other companies profiled include the No. 1 ranked company to work for: the storage company NetApp, the tech consulting firm Booz Allen, and the government project firm SRA International (which has a large Homeland Security and IT services division).
Some of the takeaways I found are this:
- These companies are looking for employees who can collaborate and play well with others
- Implicit in that is strong communication skills
- Employee referrals are highly valued assets
- They take interviewing by multiple internal groups seriously
- They value integrity and will ask you to demonstrate how you measure up
Here's what two HR folks from NetApp told Fortune:
What do you look for in new hires? Soriano-Abad: We look for people who, in addition to having the technical savvy and educational background, will fit with the company's culture. We work in a collaborative environment, so an individual who wants mainly to work on their own probably isn't the right candidate here. Dunn: And while we want people who work well with others, we also want very independent candidates who don't need a lot of guidance. All new hires create targets for what they want to accomplish in their first 30, 60 and 90 days.
Any red flags? Soriano-Abad: It's important for people who come to NetApp to leave their ego at the door. If someone doesn't possess the communication and collaboration skills necessary to succeed, they probably won't be selected for the job.
NetApp touts being a frugal company but "down to earth" management style, and includes some great benefits including adoption aid and autism coverage, a compressed workweek and telecommuting. One very interesting management tactic is to have some business units write future histories rather than traditional business plans which appears to help make it a good place to work.