Only Stanford and MIT graduates? What about the other 99.9% of tech grads?
Edit: It seems there is no way to delete my profile either.
How much of it is genuine (some of it certainly is), and how much of it is chasing this same small pool of people (ivy league CS education, worked at Google or Microsoft, or significantly contributions to a major open source project)?
So, of course you csn't find your rockstar.
It seems in the tech world today, the answer is to not lower your requirements, or find one Ruby person and one JS person, or look at non-Zynga alumni, or (gasp!) look at remote workers, but to LOOK HARDER AND LOUDER for the same thing. Which is, from someone slightly on the outside of, well, the Valley, grating.
Not that there is anything wrong with wanting to undertake some kind of degree, I respect that. It's when having a degree is considered the only real entry into Facebook or Google, or any large Internet company which in turn gets you into a service like this, the gaps start to widen. Unless you work for a company that gets acquired by one of these big companies, you need a degree, no ifs or buts.
I don't mind not being a part of the service myself, it's a great idea. I would just love to get in on it though, I think I am a decent developer with a decent list of Github repositories and code contributions to other projects as well as years of experience.
Limiting it to developers from places that already have rigorous selection practices is just a starting point. Any suggestions for how to evaluate talent otherwise? We have a few ideas, but would love to hear yours.
I wouldn't want to work for a place that was so technically strapped that they couldn't evaluate me as a candidate on my own merits. But I do like the idea of a "Developer Auction" where anyone can participate, like in a real market.
It's a shame that after creating a profile I have to go through the trouble of contacting you to be notified if you decide to start offering such a service.
If the employer got his/her degree from Cornell (for example), he/she might not be too thrilled to find that you've decided that job applicants from Cornell aren't even worth letting into the system.
Yeah, I don't get it either.
Having no knowledge of the founders at all, I would guess that some of the founders graduated from those universities and either worked at or know people who worked at those companies, and so they chose that list to start with because they were familiar with the range of quality they could expect of programmers from those places.
The second sentence in the quote outright tells you that they plan to expand this list. Presumably they could be convinced to advance their expansion schedule if there was a lot of demand from people not fitting their stated starter profile.
Basically, I think commenters here are making a big deal about something that's really just a temporary filter to reduce the volume of applicants until the company is ready to scale up. Maybe I'm being too trusting, but I didn't read anything sinister into it.
It was/is a temporary filter, it's a band-aid awaiting a better long-term fix. Certainly the list of half a dozen or so companies isn't meant to be all inclusive.
We'd love to hear your suggestions/feedback on how we can avoid being spammed with 100,000+ applications and how we can better determine which candidates will attract job offers & interest from employers.
We're trying to come up with ideas for how to open it up to a wider audience while still keeping up quality. Any ideas?
That is a narrow field, artificially scarce, driving up prices.
When rate came up, he balked, and started saying that lots of people could do what I was doing, blah blah blah, this was 'only' PHP (although it wasn't), etc. I calmly pointed out I was the only person talking to him who was available to come on site the next day to get started. We didn't get started - I suspect the 'this is an emergency crisis' issue suddenly was downgraded to "let's wait until we can find a part time person for $20/hour".
I don't think I'm cocky about this, but I've grown more comfortable in knowing that while I'm not the best, I'm usually the best available. And that's not that I'm bottom of the barrel, but for pretty much any set of tech skills, I personally know people better than me. It's just that they're all employed (or over-employed), and I'm available. Some times. :)
If you go out to the market and offer €X for someone to do a thing, and noone takes you up on it, than the market rate (by definition) higher than X, ie you are not paying market rates.
Not everyone is like that, but it amazes me how many people want "rockstar" developers and sr-level engineers with 8-10+ years of experience in major metro areas in the US, and only want to pay $70k. I don't care how many foosball tables you have. Actually, I take that back - yes I do. 1 is too many until you're paying higher wages. Or you risk only being able to attract a certain type of developer... I may just be far too mercenary in my old age. :/
What are you trying to say about the engineers at those companies?
What a bunch of navel gazing, elitist douchebags you are. Do you think actually think working a Zynga or Facebook makes you a good dev. Get a grip. In any sufficiently large set of individuals you will have everything from poseur to star. Facebook, Zynga and others are not immnune to this like you would have us believe.
I was around during the previous tech bubble. Paid my dues in the trenches and earned my stripes. The last startup I was at I was a team lead. It is still around and growing but I guess since I didn't go a fancy school I don't exist. That's ok, keep promoting the hiring of greenhorns who think everything they dream up is new and then proceed to reinvent the wheel. Education does not make you smart, just educated.
BTW: In case your wondering. I'm happily employed making 6 figures for less hours than your screened employers would expect.
(Note: I have neither a CS degree (or even a high school diploma) nor have I worked for any of the companies mentioned.)
No. They are catering to a group of people who specifically care about pedigree. They are trying to replace the role of the recruiters who do the same thing.
The recruiters actively sell the idea that pedigree matters.
I would have partnered with a company that already had peoples' code and some experience using it to find who the good coders are. My recruiting experiences with coding-test sites were not very positive (as with dating, the sites were fine, it's the needle-haystack problem because there were few good ones and they got lots of attention) but Kaggle (which focuses on data science) might have greener pastures.
Auctions with a scarce supply get collectors and enthusiasts. Prices soar. Auctions with a constant stream of the same old stuff are just a race to the bottom.
They're currently following the first model by limiting where the engineers can come from. They clearly want to be seen as the Southerby's of the recruitment auction world.
So it'll be interesting to see how long before they figure out they'll probably make more money being Ebay.
It is definitely a choice and differentiation is much, much easier when you're snobby about your merchandise but are they going to have enough product to sell to keep the doors open indefinitely? Are there really that many A* candidates in major tech firms and positions that want to move job?
I like this in theory, but in reality the most important thing when hiring is not how good they look on paper, but how well a developer fits in and works with a team. If they're a team player, how well they can resolve disputes, etc.
We've surveyed a LOT of employers, and that's definitely the number one thing they look for in employees. Culture fit, personality, empathy, etc.
Hopefully, someone can provide a definition for "culture fit" that clears the air on these questions.
It's not discrimination because one could choose to not be an asshole, or to develop an appreciation for techno. Discrimination is when you don't hire somebody because they were born differently than you, not because you don't get along.
You could try to spin not hiring people who like techno as discrimination, saying they were born not liking techno. You might be able to bend the definition to fit, but I doubt we'll ever see legal protection for people who don't like techno.
We just want to find someone we can work with on a day to day basis.
The goal is to give every developer 5-7 interesting opportunities (with numbers attached). At the end of the auction, they can create a short-list and go in for in-person interviews to determine cultural fit with the team, etc. and ultimately determine what's best for them.
It's definitely not going to be highest-bidder always wins, hiring is too complex to boil it down to a single number. Every developer will have personal preferences about what sorts of opportunities they want to work on, what work environment they prefer, and whether they want to join an early-stage company or a more mature one.
And agree, cultural fit is important.
That $30 million figure is useless. It tells us nothing. Why was it included?
Reminds me of the latest trend in news, "how much were people Twittering when <person> made a political speech".
But boy does $30 million in job offers sure sound good for a weary journalist, amirite?
Engineering comp. is a long discussion, but I don't think the best engineers are under-compensated so much as under-utilized. Companies pay appropriate to the work people are doing, but staff engineers 3-5 years below what they're usually capable of.
So we can expect, if we interview through there, that we'll see an artificially inflated offer to get us to interview there, followed by a much lower salary on the actual offer letter?
Not that I work for one of those companies anyway.
> "startups are required to honor their highest bid if follow up, in-person interviews are successful and they want to make a hire."
It doesn't help that the company running the auction has a strong vested interest in these stories not coming to light.
As a co-founder of another tech company, I still get barraged by inbound tech recruiters claiming they have the next great Ruby engineer for us. This approach is much more transparent and fair from an employer perspective, and I think it's friendly to developers too.
Pretty much everything I've done in the last 8 years has been NDA'd.
Real trade secret issues like Coca-Cola's secret formula are very very unusual in the real world, and really shouldn't apply to most software if a company is claiming that their entire code base is a trade secret. I can understand how an incredible 5 line cooking recipe or encryption algorithm could possibly be a trade secret, but it's ludicrous to extend that 'trade secret' protection to an entire 300,000-line software code base. People who worked on trivial and basic parts of a codebase should definitely be able to talk about it after a reasonable amount of time. I believe that this is particularly true after a product is discontinued or a company goes out of business.
NDA's should recognize this and founders should put reasonable time limits in their contracts, even if their attorneys say that they should go for as much protection as possible and try to protect all code/data/etc for 100 years. When a software company discontinues a product, it would be great for them to just release the source code and share with the community. Our laws regarding trade secrets and copyright are outdated, and just because the law allows a company to do something doesn't mean that they should do it.
I totally respect John Carmack for being a great example of putting old code into the public domain. Carmack makes a point to release the source code of his old game engines (see doom3 code review: http://fabiensanglard.net/doom3/index.php ) once they're obsolete. I believe that this has a huge impact, and serves to help educate and inspire the next generation of game engine developers. An attorney or CFO could say that it's irresponsible to do that, but I'm sure that the benefits that he gets indirectly by doing this far outweigh any negative thing that has come out of it.
Not only because it just feels wrong, but if the owner got sued, I wouldn't want some cut-rate hack derping his way merrily thru my files doing discovery.
huh, so a company has to have venture capital to be eligible?
edit: elsewhere= TC article. "The company manually verifies employers via AngelList and only lets approved startups, defined as having raised capital or being profitable, browse engineer profiles."
>"We help developers get paid what they’re worth through a competitive process,"
Only if worth is exclusively dependent on Academic Pedigree. Or having worked at a large corporation that relies on a consumer product. Seems to me it's a pretty limited service.
Just make sure you include a portfolio of your work with your application.
"If you end up hiring a candidate within 6 months of viewing their profile, we will invoice you..."
Note the phrasing "142 startups... submitted over $30m in job offers." Sounds like if company A bids $200K for SuperNerd, and company B bids $250K for SuperNerd, they'd count that as $450K of submitted bids. SuperNerd may have declined both offers, so income might be zero. See the "Vanity Metrics" section of this article (but ignore its title):
By the way, I think you should limit your field to people who would never work for Zynga, not people who currently work there.
In a sense though, this reminds me of professional sports free agency in a lot of ways. You have the teams/companies that are willing to overpay for names, and you have sort of the moneyball thing going on with groups that are looking for really good bang for their buck and trying to measure undervalued talent. One thing I wonder if this site could have the potential to do is help out the second group, although I don't think the current setup does that.
There is no correlation between the amount of dollars you spend on your education and how educated you are. There is a correlation between having rich parents that can pay for it and going to an expensive school. But I wish people would stop perpetuating this myth about how a great school automatically makes their alumni great. The schools themselves aren't going to do it because expensive fees is what they live on. People who spent that kind of money aren't either because they gain a lot of free and undeserved opportunities from the reputation the school has. But we, the smart techies should know better. George W Bush graduated from Yale for gods sake.
Sure, an excellent engineer employed at $200K with a vast network is unlikely to send his resume to Craigslist ads, but they may use a simple way to find out whether they could get $300K and a $500K signing bonus.
I would have made it Silicon Valley only: either you live there, or you'll move there. (I'm in New York, so it might seem unusual that I'm suggesting excluding my city, but you need to limit inflow and that's the best way to do it, because job markets are pretty local. You add cities once you have traction and are looking to scale.)
Then I would have partnered with a company like Kaggle in order to get access to people who can actually code. I've met a lot of mediocrities with prestigious resumes. One of the biggest problems with hiring is the number of people who have established a great connections <-> great jobs loop but don't know anything.
They focused on the right thing. The target audience isn't the startup that cares about getting the best people, just the ones with the best pedigrees. This would be perfect in finance.
Try to leave your distaste for their business model at the door.
Although if you're prepared to make the sweeping accusation that no-one at Zynga is morally righteous enough to work with you, I won't stop you. That reflects on you, not them.
Not hiring someone from Zynga does nothing to hurt the company, simply the individual who worked there. The idea that one should be discriminated based on past workplaces is a bizarre one to me.
The criteria in the story is what we used for our first auction, we love talented engineers that work at all companies not just the half dozen or so listed in the TechCrunch story.
We'd love your feedback on additional testing/vetting criteria that we could use. At the moment though, if you work at Gilt Group, Intuit, Etsy, Square Space, Microsoft, Amazon or any other number of "big brands" in one of the major cities we'll get you approved in one of our upcoming auctions (but only if you're serious about switching jobs).
If I were shopping for candidates on your site, I'd be pretty upset to be sold a candidate that is a liability due to contract violations (especially at a startup). It might be worth flagging for potential employers that a given company is known to force non-compete agreements on their employees.
Please aspire to a higher standard of discussion.