She was right, I realized.
Now I’m looking for job again, have been rejected by 4 companies, no offer in hand yet and I’m open about it.
The secret to networking is to "network" when you don't need anything. If you meet people in your (intended) field, get to know them, learn, learn, learn, and generally establish yourself - even a little - before you need it, you'll be 100x better off when you do.
If you wait until you need it, you can come off as needy, desperate, or one of those "I only hear from them when they need something" people. I have a former friend that literally the only time I heard from her was when she was looking for work. I got in to habit of "Oh, she emailed.. must be looking for a job!" Don't be them.
I can’t emphasise this enough. Over the past decade I have built up a small network of mostly former and current colleagues. We all have mutual respect for each other, so if an opportunity or need arose neither party would feel bad about reaching out or being reached out to. After all, a positive outcome will likely be mutual.
I used to think that networking involved going to conferences and shaking hands with strangers in hallways while exchanging business cards. This was terrifying because I knew I’d be bad at it.
I was pleasantly surprised at being wrong.
”#supergrateful and #blessed for meeting super inspiring %SomeoneImportant today #growth #entrepreneurship %hipsterstartup #nopause”
I try to stay away from it as much as I can.
I also stay away from LinkedIn, though. #worthless #selfpromotion
I’ve had a long career in technology, and for most of it I was doing project and product management, with some light coding on my own time as a hobby. Five years ago I’d finally had it with all that and went to a great coding boot camp. I did end up landing a job after that, but it was a grueling experience to go back to zero in finding jobs.
Comparing yourself to others can be incredibly draining. Not only are many of these people at different stages in their careers than you are, but you’re seeing the best faces they can put forward when you look at LinkedIn.
My advice is - own who and where you are right now. You have done a hell of a lot of work to get where you are now, and you can be proud of that. And if a company isn’t looking for someone like you - if 20 companies aren’t - that’s not on you. Keep working on your craft, keep following what networking angles you can in this crazy year, and keep the faith.
Also, look into what the School for Poetic Computation is doing -- https://sfpc.io/
Happy to send you (a lot) more references / ideas of places to which you could apply, digital artist centers to follow, etc. Reach out! (email in profile)
Oh, and also -- https://www.recurse.com/ :-)
Now I've been here 6 months.
Really crazy, and I have no idea how this ended up happening. Probably a combination of studying more and getting better with every interview, finding my weaknesses and fixing them. Along with a combination of bad luck with getting rejected so many times, and good luck with the final acceptance of where I am.
Interesting thing is that I think my offer was more towards the higher end of band for this company, so who knows.
This is similar to survivorship bias, and its relationship to cause and effect stories.
Because of that experience, I make it a point that every single candidate deserves a yes or no response and the company I work for has kept that up.
I used to work in tech recruiting. I guarantee you 100%, no one cares.
As a candidate your only option is to move on or write a bad glassdoor if you are so inclined and move on.
My org was once hiring for a tech position, it was a new role, we weren't exactly sure if the process was right and one candidate sent us an email criticising the process and interviewers. We have apologised and thanked for the feedback, which was brought onboard and used to calibrate and improve the process further. Not every company is the same.
Besides, when we have received that kind of message it immediately raised some red flags. What if the candidate complains on glassdoor or other social media? It would damage our reputation. And frankly speaking, GoDaddy doesn't exactly have a good reputation.
About 15 years ago I managed a software team and decided I wanted to consider new opportunities. I wasn't sure I was leaving, but I wanted to see what was out there. A recruiter saw my resume, called my workplace to speak to the hiring manager, and offered his services to help the company fill their soon-to-be-vacant development manager position.
The recruiter was happy to reveal that I was considering leaving until he realized I was the hiring manager he was talking to. He quickly hung up.
If you company does leetcode puzzles ( I worked at such a company) for hiring and a candidate tells you that they felt like that processes lacked basic human decency. What would you do?
“ I used to work in tech recruiting. I guarantee you 100%, no one cares.”
This does not reflect tech recruiting. People do care and while there are many hurdles to changing a process, we shouldn’t give up because its hard.
What are you going to do about that other than give up?
> This does not reflect tech recruiting. we shouldn’t give up because its hard.
Yes, everyone noticed.
Sounds correct. That's why professional tech recruiters are best avoided. Have never seen anything but empty talk and bad matches from them. On either side, recruiting or being recruited. Unfortunately the bigger the HR of a company, the more similarities to outside recruiters.
I worked as a recruiter at a big tech company not a tech recruiting firm.
Recruiting is just a big numbers game, it is nothing personal.
Its just the way it is.
Most people here hate white board, leetcode puzzles with passion but you cannot simply "best avoid" it if you want to get into a big tech company.
Do you really think making engineers with 2 decades of experience solve 'trapping rain water' in 30 mins is "basic human decency" ? Do you think they care if you write to them about that?
Why the personal attacks?
I am merely telling you what goes on. Its not my personal policy or my personal preference. I hated being a recruiter and pivoted out of it.
Do you think FB engineers personally set the policy to ignore rumours against muslims in India from spreading on their platform.
I hated being a recruiter and pivoted out of it.
That's definitely helpful to know. Thanks for clarifying.
So if you don't care, you should.
Nothing wrong with complaining but people often hurl needless insults when they've had a less than optimal time.
Not in the EU. You can file a GDPR SAR for any electronic records created during the process, which will probably include the interviewer’s notes.
I don't understand this bit. Did the recruiter input your info in their system and then the system send you a rejection email?
If I were to publish such a blog post it would be more depressing and probably make me look like a bad developer (at least a bad candidate), not like someone who is “open about failure”.
Getting rejected any number times means nothing at all. People interviewing candidates are no better than the candidate, and in many cases not even as good as the candidate. Even if they were better it wouldn't matter, 1 hour is barely any time to judge any one and any decision you are likely to make even a 'yes' decision will never be 100% right. Even a hire decision doesn't mean you are awesome.
Plus a person measuring their worth based on job interviews is totally wrong. We like to think that people wish to hire people at least as good as them, if not better. In reality no one likes people better than them, and they'd rather not have some one better than them at work. They will be hiring competition responsible for them not getting raises, bonuses, promotions or RSU's. You are more likely to get rejected being good than bad.
If I've learned anything at all its the Clinton principle How many chances does one get? As much as one is willing to take
Pretty much any rejection any where means nothing. I'm not saying one must not take them seriously enough to improve oneself. But there is not need to get depressed or under evaluating yourself.
Just be chipping away at a good system of improving yourself in never ending cycles.
>Plus a person measuring their worth based on job interviews is totally wrong. We like to think that people wish to hire people at least as good as them, if not better. In reality no one likes people better than them, and they'd rather not have some one better than them at work. They will be hiring competition responsible for them not getting raises, bonuses, promotions or RSU's. You are more likely to get rejected being good than bad.
I am sure this happens, but it hasn't matched my general experience. I've been on both sides of the interviewing process, and have met people with better skills on the other side.
I also haven't worked any place so dysfunctional that skilled candidates' applications were torpedoed because they were potential competition.
Though I work on a team with a guy who told me he had to apply to about 80 places. I've read his CV and it doesn't have a lot of signals that scream hire me. His pathway into software engineering is very non-typical. Despite that he's a decent developer and a great colleague.
- Graduated in Brazil (nobody knows my university)
- Graduated in non-CS degree
- Self-taught developer after careeer change with 37 yo (used freeCodeCamp.org, not even a known boot camp)
- No famous (in the US) companies in my resume
Probably more things that I don’t know. I have a similar numbers of interviews coming from my “Who wants to be hired” post  and from these ~200 applications
My favourite one was sitting in a conference room in a hotel basement being interviewed by a FAANG for 5 hours. Completely bombed the interview but it makes me laugh looking back at it
I can understand and appreciate how this can be a boon to the esteem of their peers. But let's take it a step further.
Is there a way that the authors of these "CV of failures" can bridge the gap between themselves and those who may not even have a "curriculum" to ascribe to their life?
There are plenty of reasons to conceal the failures in real time, but the two that jump to mind for me are:
1) not wanting your current employer to know you're looking, and
2) not wanting to advertise that you've been rejected to other future job prospects. (Could prime people into wondering "What's wrong with this candidate?" if you don't make it somewhere else.)
2. Why mention the pay rate? Civil Service jobs have never been well paid - especially in comparison to private sector equivalent job roles. People go into these jobs for a lot of reasons beyond remuneration - behind-the-scenes power, for instance, or social cachet, or even in the belief that they can help make things work better.
3. The key level in the average UK central government department is the Grade 7 Team Leader. They're the ones with (wide) responsibility for a specific policy area, and/or running a specific government programme. They're also the ones who get hammered when anything goes wrong. (Deputy) Directors will be responsible for managing a Division of such Teams in a related area. Above them are the Director Generals (C-suite folks for each Department, though far more limited in numbers) and the Permanent Secretary (the CEO, if you like).
Running a country is not the same as running a business.
 - https://www.instituteforgovernment.org.uk/explainers/grade-s...
Only about 1/4 of US adults have an accredited 4-year degree. Just being a new grad is already a huge credential. Still, that credential doesn't generally generate $120k, for any major.
Where did these new grads get their degrees? My guess is that your personal social circle has a certain pedigree that isn't the norm.
I only bring this up to push back against the common idea on this forum that you need to be Ivy/Stanford/MIT/Caltech to get into a top FAANG or consulting job or law/medical program -- first careers like these were the rule at my school, not the exception. And many were hired with one of those "useless" liberal arts degrees rather than a degree in the specific field they went in to.
Not in the UK, though.
I know a few who did that, worked 3 years and went back with a healthy savings.
The one time I went to the US I nearly had a panic attack, so I can't really imagine living there or dragging my family there, but then you look at the money and it sure looks worth dragging yourself through hell for.
> The one time I went to the US I nearly had a panic attack
I guess if you have psychological issues that make travel difficult or feel like "dragging yourself through hell", as you put it, then maybe just stay at home.
Another option is to work remote. You'll get paid less for being in an Asian time-zone, but you might still earn more than a local company would pay you.
A third option, which is the one I'm currently pursuing (from east Asia), is taking your skills directly to the market as an entrepreneur.
For one FAANG, I had 3/5s my interview panel all clearly very positive about me, and 2/5s who clearly did not care from the very first minute of the interview, and the internal recruiter was like "Let's talk again in a year". Like, the implication clearly being he expected a pass, it was just luck of the draw on the panel. But even with that, year 'cooling off' period.
Then he decided to take the risk and run his own business, which is starting to gain some traction right now after the covid crisis.
Took me almost two months to find employment and in hindsight my greatest mistake was to bother with all that in November - companies started replying only in December when apparently they were finished with planning for the next quarter.
I'm seeing the same phenomenon now that again I'm looking to get hired - I currently have one offer on the table and at least three other interviews even though a month ago the best what I could hope for was a canned response rejecting my application.
I haven't been in too many situations where I've been actively looking for employment/engagements, but some of the times I've been in those situations, everything was bad. It's difficult to go back and 'share' those with people - publicly - as it brings back a lot of bad memories of those time periods. Low funds or debt, downsizing, loss of friends/community, home/life issues, family issues, whatever. Scenarios where someone is looking for a job are often stressful, and that often can spread out for months, and affect the family and friends around you.
I'm happy to share extreme details of my situations with people in person, offer up support and give advice and insight about someone's situation by drawing on my own experiences, but... typically only in person. Publicly... generally not.
There's not just 'shame' issues for yourself; when you have a family, posting information about your failures can have an impact on your family as well, which they may not want.
I keep hearing how there's a war for technical talent. I guess I don't have any.
I do think the need for technical talent is there, though - I've had a very different experience from what you describe.
I agree with your perspective. I also think there are issues on the recruiting side. Sometimes it seems like they don't know what they need and they just list a ton of unnecessary stuff in the list of required skills.
It took me about 2 years after college until I got steady employment. I think I had sent over 750 apps and interviewed at over 100 companies. Most of the time they were trying to get a senior software engineer (5+ years xp) but considered me because I was probably one of the only people who had applied to their place. My interviewing skills were/are still garbage compared to the competition though.
> I keep hearing how there's a war for technical talent. I guess I don't have any.
When I left academia, I struggled for 6 months to get a job. Then, 6 months into my first data scientist role, my company had to downscale and the whole data science team (me included) laid off.
I got three offers in two weeks following that, even though I was more or less the same candidate as 6 months earlier. That one line on my CV of having a modicum of commercial experience made such a big difference.
I had many friends who over-indexed on grades and had 0-2 internships. Many of them were really smart, but couldn't get the foot in the door for an interview.
Experience (including internships at legitimate companies) will get you past the the resume screen and recruiter call. From that point on, it's your interviewing skill that counts most.
I actually like fizz-bang interviews - just don't expect me to have algorithms memorized in a formal way. They give an interviewer the ability to see how the candidate translates the requirements into code, what their process is, how they think about the subject matter.
I agree about the shoulders-of-giants statement. That's sort of what I'm was getting at with my comment about using standard libraries. If I'm using pandas dataframes, there's no reason for me to build an algorithm/code to join multiple dataframes. If I were the interviewer, I would certainly view a candidate in a better light if they bring up this point rather than just jump into coding duplicate functionality.
If n == 0
n -= 1
On phone (so untested pseudo code), but this is my standard way of thinking about it. I think implementing bfs and dfs also helps to get it a bit more.
And I have needed to do recursion on web dev, because it’s the easiest way to deal with trees on your own.
You learn it in highschool level programming classes & first semester intro to CS college courses.
Even if they won't specifically need to use recursion in their next job it marks them as someone not serious or about programming.
Just like I'd expect a moderately senior developer to be able to program in procedural, object oriented & functional styles even if they strongly prefer one to the others (and how would they know if they haven't tried all of them?).
I mean, I would be worried if a candidate is not shy to use recursion that this will blow up software perfomance. (But then probably after hire the senior will tell: dont use recursion here)
Generally, developer interviews are just stand-ins for IQ tests since it is illegal to give a candidate an IQ test. Seeing if someone can easily write a recursive function is a pretty good IQ test.
Of course I will be embarressed soon, when it is only me who doesnt use recursion in production. :-)
Regardless, yes, I doubt many people write a lot of recursive functions, since the data structures people use tend to either be flat, based on arrays, or neatly hidden away in libraries.
There are still plenty of jobs that require excellent technical skills.
(Solve the Towers of Babylon with recursive algo).
So, yes. Somebody calling himself a programmer or engineer should be able to produce this.
No more, no less. Doing so will get you paid for the activity of programming.
Along the way if you don't know anything, because you can't know or remember everything, you just look it up.
You have reached the required standard, but we are unable to offer you a job immediately. We have placed you on a reserve list from which future appointments may be made.
When I was leaving academia it took a number of rejections before I realized that I wasn't being rejected because I wasn't qualified, but because the company only had one spot and I wasn't their top choice.
In the end its just a footnote.
Is this something a recruiter might ever not say?
Head hunters on the other hand will generally say anything to get you to keep interviewing.
Susan Tan Rants and Ruminations From A Job Applicant After 100 CS Job Interviews in Silicon Valley
My recent job search adventures
I really liked the airtable at the end of that post: https://airtable.com/shrL4aSSKldQHTtM3
Once I’ve gotten a job, a question coworker asked: how did some of these other people around me get through the interview process.
I can’t stand the interviews where you invest a significant amount of time and get zero feedback. I realize they often don’t want to share everything but give me something so I have some direction for improvement.
I quit this job because of stress.
Next job was at Michael’s a crafts store. It was seasonal and I didn’t get hired.
After that I did contract jobs on upwork doing web design and development.
I got fired from Subway because I was too slow at making sandwiches.
In college I got burned out and eventually found my career as a programmer for an insurance company.
I'm really picky about jobs. I hardly never interview unless I think we're going to be a good match (me and the job) and that there's something I can bring to the table.
"Data" was not treated this way in the past and now it is everywhere. Where did it come from and why did it change?
So for instance, whereas the compound noun phrase "law school entrance exams" is perfectly fine, "law schools entrance exam" is not. It has a plural on "schools", where it is not allowed to be, because that is not the head of the noun phrase.
According to this rule, we should not have words like "data processing", unless we treat "data" as plural. If we treat "data" as the plural of "datum", we must make it "datum processing".
Is that how it is in British English, or do they still make it "data processing"?
In any case, one cannot be a proper pedant about "data" and "datum", while continuing to use terms like "data storage".
But most people treat 'data' as a singular noun, especially when talking about computers etc.
The data is being transferred from my computer to yours.
And I have to be honest, I've never heard anyone ask for a datum.
It could be the case that the scientific pluralization is leaking into regular usage because more people are collectively reading / reporting on scientific studies. Alternatively, Google / Grammarly and similar tools might be suggesting it because it's been seen in their training data / examples.
In any case, IMHO 'datum' is a singular point of information, any reference to multiple points of information would make the noun plural.