Article by Edward Heinrich, Recruiter at Jobspring San Francisco
User interfaces have become more and more important in terms of consumer expectations, especially since touch screen smart phones became the mainstream. The touch screen amped up the level of engagement we humans have with our technology, replacing controllers and buttons with more sensory-direct taps and gestures. By striving for minimal but highly functional hardware and software, we’ve created a more intimate way to use our devices – a way that feels more natural. This minimalist wave of the future is arguably led by Apple with their sleek, simple products, and directly contrasted with Blackberry, a successful company famous for its full-keyboard phones but currently facing hard times.
Aside from machine exteriors, tech software has simplified as well. Programmers are employed frequently and in high numbers (and even higher salaries) to make our apps and programs faster and easier to use. Designers are then responsible for ensuring that our interactive experience feels natural and intuitive and that interfaces are clean and simple. In fact, as recruiters, we are seeing a boom in the UX/UI market as tasks become more specialized and more designers are needed to keep up with the fast pace of the industry. This implies that design and interfaces in general are gaining more importance to everyone from the creators to the consumers. The impact user interfaces have is huge when considering that people check their phones 150 times a day and spend two hours a day on their phones and tablets according to Business Insider.
The world of user experience is boundless, especially when considering other technologies that have little to nothing to do with interface. For instance, emerging wearable technologies, device GPS tracking, and AI such as Siri can monitor our bodies, memorize our behavior, listen to us, and then all interact with one another through Bluetooth and Wi-Fi to give us what we want the moment we need it. Your iPhone can tell your car to play music as soon as you get in after work, your car can tell your Nest when you’re close to home and warm it up before you get there, and everything on your cloud can automatically sync to all your devices so that you’re never without your calendars and information. All of these things contribute to our experience as users with technology, but can do so in a way that eliminates interfaces. On the other hand, interfaces will never completely disappear, so those that are eternally necessary are being improved by designers constantly.
We are entering a world of extremely seamless and natural-feeling user experiences, a world that is no longer limited by older generations who are slow to adapt. Much of the population, including myself, can hardly remember a time without PCs and cell phones. And those that are a bit older can’t imagine going back to a time without them. High Tech feels as natural to us as eating, and just like food, we strive to consume more and more. As our dependence grows, and as long as the economy stays healthy, we may see a future of tech much like the movie Minority Report before we know it.
Article by Melissa Tobia, Recruiter in Jobspring San Francisco
It can be easy to get caught up in routine voice messages and emails when trying to develop a professional relationship with someone. Although this is an easy trend to get sucked in to, we have to remember that business is first and foremost about people, and human interactions are everything.
A face-to-face interaction is far more powerful than any other type of connection. This is especially true when you are working with someone who is looking to find you a new job. By meeting your recruiter in person, this ultimately puts you in the best possible position to be successfully placed in a new position. If you are looking for a new job opportunity and are wondering why it’s important to meet your recruiter in person, keep these 5 tips in mind.
- Building rapport: For the next few weeks during your job search, your recruiter is going to have a significant impact on where you interview, so why not start off the relationship by meeting face to face? You want to trust the person who is helping you with your job search and feel comfortable talking to them when in need of some advice.
- Commitment to your job search: When you meet your recruiter, this shows that you are 100% on board and are dedicated to your job search. This only makes the recruiter want to work even harder to find you your new job.
- Better articulate how to sell your background: Meeting in person can help clear up details that were not so clear over a phone call or an email. A face-to-face interaction can really help your recruiter understand and then articulate why you're looking for a new opportunity. In turn, this makes them able to better sell your background to a potential employer.
- Salary negotiation: At the end of the day, the recruiter is going to be negotiating your salary. Meeting that person is going to give them a better understanding of what you're looking for, why you're looking for it, and why you deserve it. For most people, salary is a huge part of the job search. Would you really feel comfortable leaving that in the hands of someone you've never met?
- Make a lasting impression: Everyone wants to be remembered. You never know when you might be looking for another job again, and how great would it be to come back to the person who helped you in the past?
Whatever your situation, give your recruiter a chance to sell you to your dream employer. Build that relationship and you won’t be disappointed.
This month, Jobspring San Francisco has been collaborating with the St Vincent De Paul Society of San Francisco to run a food drive at their office, gathering much needed food staples before volunteering their time at the shelter. Items collected from the food drive are distributed at their Helpdesk Center for those who may not be able to afford to buy groceries. Last week, they carted the donated food to St. Vincent De Paul MSC South Centre and volunteered their evening.
MSC is the largest homeless shelter in Northern California serving breakfast and dinner to over 400 people each day. They also house over 350 men and 50 women in their overnight shelter facility. This is a great resource for men as there are a lot of projects in the city geared towards women and children so this is an exception. Through offering temporary housing of up to 120 days, it can often be the break somebody needs to try and get back on their feet after falling on hard times. Having witnessed the combined efforts and the range of services provided, Jobspring SF was truly amazed to meet and speak to the service-users firsthand and learn about the impact and benefits such facilities have had on their lives. St Vincent De Paul is able to offer such excellent services through the help of government funding, various fundraising activities, and through the help of very generous donations from the public.
Jobspring San Fransisco's arrival at the center was followed by a quick run-down on how everything works and how their work would impact and serve the SF community.
Their team was then split into groups responsible for the meet and greet, serving meals, clean up, and laundry folding.
This was a great experience for Jobspring San Fransisco. They were able to meet some really interesting people who all had a story to tell. Everyone they encountered was so grateful for Jobspring's time and effort while there, and it really was a worthwhile experience for everyone in the office who attended. They also enjoyed the delicious food first-hand when they joined the staff for dinner afterwards. Hopefully they will get to return soon and continue to support this fantastic facility in any way they can!
Article by Morgan Khodayari, Recruiter at Jobspring San Francisco
I don’t think it’s any secret that Technology is a thriving market to position your career in, particularly in the Bay Area. Even entry-level engineering salaries have been crawling up into six figures lately. So for those of us who didn’t major in computer science, how do we tap in? Is there a way to go back in time and learn to code?
Enter the newest trend: coding boot camps. There are a number of programs here in the Bay Area and Silicon Valley that will, in as little as 9 weeks, train you to be a developer. Some are focused on specific programming languages while others have a broad curriculum. There are different pricing models for these programs. Some charge a flat fee as tuition, others are free and take a percentage of their graduates’ starting salary, etc. Either way, they are creating an opportunity for anyone to become an engineer, and not only enrich their knowledge of technology but beef up their salary as well.
So why would you hire a boot camp graduate instead of someone with a computer science degree? I had the pleasure of chatting with Damon Gustafson, the VP of Operations at Coding Dojo, a code academy located here in Silicon Valley as well as Seattle, WA.
He stressed that his students learn more than just development, and are ideal hires, “Our students are passionate. They’re committed. And, they’re determined. Most of them have completely put their lives on hold; families, careers, spouses, to learn something new and go after what they want. They have spent 9 weeks working 70+ hours per week. They’re focused on one thing: being a great developer. They know this is just the beginning and that they have a great deal to learn. But they’re excited about that. They crave it. And, because now that they have been taught how to learn, they can quickly pick up whatever stack a new employer throws at them. Who wouldn’t want someone like that working for them? Plus, they’re ninjas. And having a ninja on staff is just cool.”
Furthermore, most of these programs build their students into not only great developers, but overall great employees. Most programs host guest speakers from the industry, teach resume building, and aid them in setting up services like LinkedIn and GitHub so that they are presenting themselves correctly.
Coding Dojo hosts students from all backgrounds and skill levels. Some already have computer science degrees while others have had no exposure to programming. In the end, they all come out as hungry, driven, successful developers. If you’re looking to hire a developer, I would highly consider a recent graduate of one of these programs.
Article by Morgan Khodayari, Recruiter at Jobspring San Francisco
When starting your job search, it is important to be in tune with how you are represented online and how you are utilizing Social Media. In this day and age, websites like LinkedIn and Twitter are a direct reflection of yourself and when used correctly can add another dimension to your resume and improve your credibility. While the immediate value of a Twitter page or an updated LinkedIn profile may be hard to see, your job search is the most important time to hone your focus on your online social presence.
Keeping Your Information Up-to-Date
One of the first things many hiring managers or recruiters will do after you apply to a job is plug your name into Google or look for your LinkedIn profile. Resumes are a great tool that allows candidates to show case their skill sets but a hiring manager can get additional details by utilizing online resources. LinkedIn gives them a good idea of who you’ve worked with, who you might know in common, or what your additional skills are but if your LinkedIn profile doesn’t match what you’ve highlighted on your resume, or is not up-to-date, it may draw a red flag. It can indicate that you were not forth coming in your resume or it can show that you are not concerned with your online presence. It’s becoming common practice for managers to request LinkedIn pages as opposed to resumes – it organized in the same way and should be immediately accessible so be proactive and include a link to your profile on your resume.
It’s important that you check your various social media sites at least once a day. If you are receiving requests or messages, you should be able to respond within 24 hours as you would an email. If you have a Twitter it’s important to show that you are active and contributing. If you have a Twitter account and have not tweeted for months, it cannot be utilized as a tool for creating your social media brand. You should not feel compelled to tweet constantly through the day – once or twice a day suffices and shows you are reachable and engaging others in the social media community. Be aware of who is looking at your LinkedIn – they could be hiring mangers or recruiters interested in your skill set. Also pay attention to how much traction your page is getting, and work towards improving your presence.
Contribute to Your Industry’s Community
Make sure that you are engaging with your industry’s community in every way possible. Share articles you find interesting, join groups, and reply to comments and statuses of people you find interesting. Utilize hash tags to join conversations within your field, and post articles that you read or events that you attend. This will not only generate more traction to your page, but also prove your credibility. Hiring managers want to know that their employees are in tune with what is happening in the industry and that they are active contributors so ensure that your brand reflects your involvement in the community.
Social Media is an active part of our lives and will continue to become more important. Your online presence can give you a very simple way to differentiate yourself from other applicants and make you stand out through sharing original thoughts and ideas. Take small steps to stay active and informed on various social media sites every day and see the impact of your new and improved online brand!
Jobspring San Francisco volunteered at the San Francisco Food Bank on February 28th to help out and give back to the local community!
Their organization is responsible for providing hundreds of people in need with food to help them survive. We were so lucky to get to volunteer and had a great time working with the other people who gave their time and effort to volunteer with us!
Check out some photos of our time at the food bank below:
Here is the Jobspring Partners group with their fashionable gloves and hair nets!
We were in charge of re-packaging brown rice into a more manageable from for delivery.
"High unemployment and the lingering effects of the recession have pushed record numbers of people in San Francisco and Marin to the point of hunger. While government safety net programs are stretched thin with budget cuts, people can still count on the Food Bank. Thanks to our thousands of donors and volunteers, we haven't cut back. We've scaled up, and we're getting more food to more families than ever before."
This is the impact the Food Bank will have in this year alone:
- 225,000 people will be nourished through our programs
- 45 million pounds of food will be delivered throughout San Francisco and Marin, more than half of it fresh produce direct from the farm
- 100,000 meals worth of food will be distributed each and every day
- 30,000 families will receive wholesome foods at our pantries each week
- 11,000 children will be served fresh, healthy snacks in the classroom each school day
- 450 nonprofit partners will rely on us to supply their meal and food programs
- 230 farmer's market-style pantries will provide foods people can use to prepare healthy meals in their own homes
To learn more about the San Francisco Food Bank or to get involved, please visit their site at: http://www.sffoodbank.org/
On Wednesday, February 6th Tech in Motion was at KIXEYE for an awesome presentation by John Sasser and Larry Mellon on Load Automation and Scalability in Gaming.
We had an exclusive with Larry Mellon after his presentation and were able to get to know more about his experiences.
With over a dozen GDC lectures, Larry Mellon is an established leader in accelerating the production of online games via automated testing and metrics-driven development. His background in the scalability of parallel simulations and distributed virtual worlds from DARPA's Advanced Distributed Simulation and Synthetic Theatre of War programs provides the basis for solutions that support rapid prototyping, visibility and stable operations.
Larry presented on how to use Automation to accelerate and scale the build/test/measure processes. He also covered the use of Analytics to iteratively improve the gameplay, system performance, monetization and the production cycle itself.
JS: How did you get started in this industry, were you always in San Francisco?
LM: I was a DARPA and NRL software architect, focusing on the scalability of parallel simulations and virtual training worlds. I saw a new, truly interactive media forming from the early MMO games, 3D accelerators and social networks, and I wanted to be part of making that vision happen. So I spent a year researching the field and published a couple of papers at the Game Developer’s Conference, which gave me some leads into the highly insular world of building video games.
My path to San Francisco started from a desire to escape the frozen tundra of Canada and to work with the best people in distributed systems, both of which are California-centric. I spent ten years in the Washington D.C. research communities, and then moved to Walnut Creek to help ship EA’s flagship MMO project, The Sims Online. A quick stint in LA convinced us that the Bay Area suited us best, and the eclectic mix of San Francisco people, beach Frisbee and Golden Gate Park lured us out of the East Bay.
JS: What are you passionate about technology wise?
LM: Highly iterative prototyping and fielding of complex distributed systems, using aspects of automated testing, test-driven development, embedded application metrics and agile processes for iteration speed, stability and visibility. Think the scientific method, started up for the unique aspects of finding and fielding fun in massively concurrent virtual worlds. I also love the technology and physics behind flying Frisbees, and relentlessly experiment with optimizations to the distance/speed/accuracy problem. Yes, that means I spend a lot of time throwing Frisbees on the beach.
JS: How did you select which topic to present on?
LM: I’ve been working on another software engineering textbook, focused on the problems of building complex online games that are stable in both development and live environments. Online games must able to be quickly shifted in direction as rapid prototypes iterate and improve internally, and then go live as soon as ‘fun’ is found, and be easily scaled as a game grows in popularity. “Iterative Innovation in Games and Gardens” has been my obsession for years now; I picked out some of the material that I thought would be of broad interest but light enough to cover in 20 to 30 minutes. Solving these hyper-agile software problems is required for our industry to jump to the next energy level in the electron cloud, writing lectures provides tremendous clarity of thought for me, lets me geek out with others interested in the same problem, and hopefully gives others a basis for looking into these problems in their own unique problem spaces.
JS: Have you attended a Tech in Motion Meetup before? What are your thoughts on it?
LM: This was my first Tech in Motion meetup. I was quite impressed at the turnout generated, especially when compared to other SF meetups I’ve attended in metrics technology.
JS: Are you active in the Meetup community? What about social media?
LM: I’ve recently started hitting SF meetups; this was my first talk. I post snippets of social media type things and software type things to Facebook and have been slowly accumulating articles for a blog on technology thoughts, subconscious versus conscious decision making and humorous short stories.
JS: What is one thing you hoped that attendees took away from today?
LM: System-level, fully automated testing and embedded application metrics can be used to radically accelerate the rapid prototyping phases of game development, as well as stronger, cheaper stability at operational scale, and as prediction guidelines in the notoriously fuzzy problem of ‘where are we, right now, against our daily tasks and quarterly projection goals?’ A timetable for finding ‘fun’ is not predictable per se, but by examining multiple trends; one can roughly project and accelerate dates.
KIXEYE is opening up their Top Secret Lab for a fun filled night of free Happy Hour & Snacks before two speakers will delve into the challenges of developing and maintaining a Gaming platform. Join Jobspring Partners for their 5th installment of Tech in Motion San Francisco and come ready to learn some pretty cool stuff!
RSVP Now and don't miss this great Meetup-> #techinmotion
The Presentations will be the following:
Scalable Game Development By: Larry Mellon
Building “fun” can be hard and upfront planning only carries you so far. Larry will talk about how to use Automation to accelerate and scale the build/test/measure processes. He will also cover the use of Analytics to iteratively improve the game-play, system performance, monetization and the production cycle itself.
Meet Larry Mellon
Larry Mellon is a frequent author and speaker on accelerating game production via automated testing and metrics-driven development. He joined the game industry over ten years ago, distributing systems to bear on the development challenges of EA's The Sims Online and The Sims 2.0. Larry was a lead architect in DARPA's Advanced Distributed Simulation and Synthetic Theatre of War programs.
Scaling Your Infrastructure By: John Sasser
Whether you are a developer, gamer, or just plain interested in scalable platforms, this talk will interest you! John will discuss different strategies and approaches to prepare your infrastructure for natural growth or a massive influx of users. Attendees will learn how to identify weak areas and correctly engineer solutions for common bottlenecks and reduce single points of failure. In addition, he will cover how to prepare for a launch, when to scale horizontally vs. vertically, as well as tips for capacity planning.
Meet John Sasser
With 14 years of infrastructure engineering and technical operations experience, John brings a myriad of knowledge from both the public and private sectors. John has built and managed mission-critical environments for DoD, DHS, and NSA, as well as a number of large commercial clients either directly or through his company, Nimbus Solutions. In addition, John has helped a number of smaller start-ups in Silicon Valley and beyond build world-class ecosystems.