To get better at recruiting SAP is taking an inside-out approach, looking to its internal employee base to recommend talent that could be brought into the company. At the same time Heinrich is utilizing different sources to suss out talent, from external recruiters to the Internet. He's also looking at tapping more up-and-coming talent by recruiting more in academia where SAP's founders have strong roots. "We are looking at software engineers and all kinds of quantitative scientists," said Heinrich.
There is an equal emphasis on engineering and sales, according to Heinrich. And SAP is not alone in its land grab for talent.
"All new things which we are encouraging have bottlenecks," said Heinrich. "We see this all the time. We are happy that we have our global network and that we are really present in all areas across the globe. So if there is a bottleneck in Silicon Valley," SAP can look to other parts of the world for talent.
Despite a faltering U.S. economy Heinrich is seeing hiring bottlenecks in Silicon Valley. The reason, he said, is that as the economy slows companies are once again looking to squeeze efficiency gains out of IT.
"Silicon Valley is again heating up compared to two years ago," said Heinrich. "The IT industry is coming back. What I hear from my colleagues is that the requirements [for IT skills] are becoming larger, salaries are increasing, competition amongst the companies is increasing."
Competition for IT talent in Silicon Valley is picking up-but not IT in general, he said. "There are not such strategies in other industries," he said. "My reason behind this is that in such an uncertain environment, companies tend to look for efficiency gains and invest in IT systems to improve efficiencies. I saw a similar situation in the early 1990s in America, where companies invested very massively in IT re-engineering."