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    Tech Candidate Spotlight – Ahmed El Bialy, Senior Software Developer Engineer

    We’re so excited to speak with you, Ahmed! Will start by sharing a little bit about your educational background?

    I have a Bachelor’s degree in Education with a major in Mathematics and a minor in Special Education. I’m a self-taught Software Developer! I specifically taught myself mobile development. I took some Computer Science courses in university. Those got me excited about programming and I grew to really love the Software Development field.

    When it came time to teach myself about programming, I took an online course through Udacity. It taught me Native iOS development using a programming language called Swift. From there, I worked on a few personal projects that eventually propelled me to land a full-time position.

    Which opportunities made the biggest impact on your tech career?

    Teaching myself code through Udacity and going to tech meetups. I had my foundational knowledge in programming from my university education, but the biggest impact came from the self-taught courses and professional experience I gained later on.

    Networking and attending those meetups were also essential. I had the chance to meet great speakers in the tech industry and learn new skills and techniques. It presented me with an opportunity to get my next role and to help others get theirs!

    What would you like to learn more about?

    Backend technologies and how businesses operate. I’m also very interested in language learning — both human and computer languages. I’d like to continue my journey learning Spanish. As for computer languages, I am focusing on JavaScript, TypeScript, Ruby, and Ruby on Rails for backend.

    I would also love to learn more about the cloud and security. My focus on mobile development security is of the utmost importance and there aren’t many professionals who specialize in this area. That’s certainly another field for me to further explore.

    Related: What are the Best Programming Languages to Get a Software Developer Job?

    What led you to pursue a career in tech?

    When I was a teacher I wanted to work in an industry with the flexibility to work from anywhere. I also wanted to be able to work on my own projects and start my own business or consultancy. I always had a deep passion for technology I wanted to explore more. With the ease of access to technology and powerful computing machines, we can solve, automate and simplify so many problems and impact how we go about our daily lives.

    I was also intrigued by the opportunity to work across industries and with different types of professionals. So far, I have worked in the education, healthcare, media, and legal industries. I have learned a lot from this varied experience! 

    How has your skillset evolved over the course of your career?

    I think my skillset has evolved quite well. I now play more of a mentor and teacher role for younger professionals. I still have a lot to learn from a technical perspective but I’ve had the opportunity to understand how the industry works and what areas of growth I can work on.

    I have become familiar with industry best practices and how to work on a cross-functional team with a variety of backgrounds and problems to solve. My skillset has certainly expanded compared to when I initially started as a mobile developer.

    What area do you specialize in and why?

    I chose to specialize in mobile application development. It’s magical to just pull out my phone and show someone a project I’ve worked on. I really enjoy the hands-on aspect of mobile development and I have the chance to work with the latest and greatest devices. It’s also fun to take on a lot of unique challenges that come with developing mobile applications such as battery life, memory, computing, network connectivity, security, and privacy. Mobile development is full of endless possibilities!

    Is your new role different from previous ones?

    Yes, it is! It is a change in tech stack I’m really excited (and a little nervous!) about. It’ll be a good opportunity for my career growth. My background is in Xamarin and Native mobile development. I really look forward to working in the world of React Native now. I also have the opportunity to work on some backend and infrastructure tasks which are definitely new to me.

    What are some of the things you’re most excited about in your new role and company?

    I’m excited to collaborate with hard working, forward thinking folks and to really make an impact in the industry. I’m also thrilled to work with some cool technologies I did not have much exposure to previously. This technology includes Angular, Ruby on Rails, React Native, and TypeScript. All of these are relatively new to me so it’s exciting and is a different experience than what I’m used to.

    Related: Hired Releases 2022 State of Software Engineers Data Report

    What was your job search experience like before you joined Hired?

    It wasn’t as diverse. I had the chance to match with amazing opportunities I would not have known about without Hired. Some of these opportunities were from companies in different industries like real estate and fintech, which I didn’t have access to before. It’s a really nice way to learn more about what’s out in the market.

    What’s your best advice for jobseekers registered on the Hired platform?

    Always respond and keep in touch with recruiters who reach out to you on Hired. Make connections and never ignore anyone. You never know where your next role might be. Always keep an open mind and take the time to fill out all the necessary information so employers can get to know you better.

    What would you tell someone who’s curious about Hired?

    Definitely check it out and stick to it. The platform is very effective and I think you will be able to get really interesting opportunities you might not otherwise have access to. Hired is also great if you wish to change careers or roles. Let’s say you want to become a developer and have some previous QA experience, Hired is a great place to find what you’re looking for.

    Any general advice you’d like to give other tech professionals?

    Always be on the lookout for roles a little outside of your comfort zone. You never know where your next best career move will be. Never miss an opportunity that comes knocking on your door. Network, learn, help others, and create the community you wish to see in the future!

    About Thomson Reuters

    Thomson Reuters is the leading provider of news and information-based tools to professionals. They enable professionals in the financial and risk, legal, tax and accounting, and media markets to make the decisions that matter most. Founded in 2008, Thomson Reuters has 5,000+ employees and is headquartered in Toronto.

    Tech Stack

    Java, Cloud, JavaScript, Angular, React, Python, AWS, Azure, C# and many more cool technologies!

    Benefits

    Health/dental/vision/life/disability insurance, pension plan, catered lunches, and more. More

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    Tech Candidate Spotlight – Ahmed El Bialy, Intermediate Software Developer

    We’re so excited to speak with you, Ahmed! Will start by sharing a little bit about your educational background?

    I have a Bachelor’s degree in Education with a major in Mathematics and a minor in Special Education. I’m a self-taught Software Developer! I specifically taught myself mobile development. I took some Computer Science courses in university. Those got me excited about programming and I grew to really love the Software Development field.

    When it came time to teach myself about programming, I took an online course through Udacity. It taught me Native iOS development using a programming language called Swift. From there, I worked on a few personal projects that eventually propelled me to land a full-time position.

    Which opportunities made the biggest impact on your tech career?

    Teaching myself code through Udacity and going to tech meetups. I had my foundational knowledge in programming from my university education, but the biggest impact came from the self-taught courses and professional experience I gained later on.

    Networking and attending those meetups were also essential. I had the chance to meet great speakers in the tech industry and learn new skills and techniques. It presented me with an opportunity to get my next role and to help others get theirs!

    What would you like to learn more about?

    Backend technologies and how businesses operate. I’m also very interested in language learning — both human and computer languages. I’d like to continue my journey learning Spanish. As for computer languages, I am focusing on JavaScript, TypeScript, Ruby, and Ruby on Rails for backend.

    I would also love to learn more about the cloud and security. My focus on mobile development security is of the utmost importance and there aren’t many professionals who specialize in this area. That’s certainly another field for me to further explore.

    Related: What are the Best Programming Languages to Get a Software Developer Job?

    What led you to pursue a career in tech?

    When I was a teacher I wanted to work in an industry with the flexibility to work from anywhere. I also wanted to be able to work on my own projects and start my own business or consultancy. I always had a deep passion for technology I wanted to explore more. With the ease of access to technology and powerful computing machines, we can solve, automate and simplify so many problems and impact how we go about our daily lives.

    I was also intrigued by the opportunity to work across industries and with different types of professionals. So far, I have worked in the education, healthcare, media, and legal industries. I have learned a lot from this varied experience! 

    How has your skillset evolved over the course of your career?

    I think my skillset has evolved quite well. I now play more of a mentor and teacher role for younger professionals. I still have a lot to learn from a technical perspective but I’ve had the opportunity to understand how the industry works and what areas of growth I can work on.

    I have become familiar with industry best practices and how to work on a cross-functional team with a variety of backgrounds and problems to solve. My skillset has certainly expanded compared to when I initially started as a mobile developer.

    What area do you specialize in and why?

    I chose to specialize in mobile application development. It’s magical to just pull out my phone and show someone a project I’ve worked on. I really enjoy the hands-on aspect of mobile development and I have the chance to work with the latest and greatest devices. It’s also fun to take on a lot of unique challenges that come with developing mobile applications such as battery life, memory, computing, network connectivity, security, and privacy. Mobile development is full of endless possibilities!

    Is your new role different from previous ones?

    Yes, it is! It is a change in tech stack I’m really excited (and a little nervous!) about. It’ll be a good opportunity for my career growth. My background is in Xamarin and Native mobile development. I really look forward to working in the world of React Native now. I also have the opportunity to work on some backend and infrastructure tasks which are definitely new to me.

    What are some of the things you’re most excited about in your new role and company?

    I’m excited to collaborate with hard working, forward thinking folks and to really make an impact in the industry. I’m also thrilled to work with some cool technologies I did not have much exposure to previously. This technology includes Angular, Ruby on Rails, React Native, and TypeScript. All of these are relatively new to me so it’s exciting and is a different experience than what I’m used to.

    Related: Hired Releases 2022 State of Software Engineers Data Report

    What was your job search experience like before you joined Hired?

    It wasn’t as diverse. I had the chance to match with amazing opportunities I would not have known about without Hired. Some of these opportunities were from companies in different industries like real estate and fintech, which I didn’t have access to before. It’s a really nice way to learn more about what’s out in the market.

    What’s your best advice for jobseekers registered on the Hired platform?

    Always respond and keep in touch with recruiters who reach out to you on Hired. Make connections and never ignore anyone. You never know where your next role might be. Always keep an open mind and take the time to fill out all the necessary information so employers can get to know you better.

    What would you tell someone who’s curious about Hired?

    Definitely check it out and stick to it. The platform is very effective and I think you will be able to get really interesting opportunities you might not otherwise have access to. Hired is also great if you wish to change careers or roles. Let’s say you want to become a developer and have some previous QA experience, Hired is a great place to find what you’re looking for.

    Any general advice you’d like to give other tech professionals?

    Always be on the lookout for roles a little outside of your comfort zone. You never know where your next best career move will be. Never miss an opportunity that comes knocking on your door. Network, learn, help others, and create the community you wish to see in the future!

    About Clio

    Clio is the leader in cloud-based legal technology offering practice management, CRM, and client intake software. Clio is transforming the practice of law in a permanent and meaningful way that’s bettering the lives of legal professionals while increasing access to justice for all. Founded in 2007, Clio has 501-1,000 employees and is headquartered in Vancouver.

    Tech Stack

    Ruby on Rails, Ruby, JavaScript, TypeScript, React, Node.JS

    Benefits

    Health/dental/vision/life/disability insurance, paid holidays, flexible working hours, maternity/paternity benefits, tuition reimbursement, and more. More

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    Tech Candidate Spotlight – Simon Fisoye-Kings, Software Engineer in the UK

    Can you share a little bit about your educational background and what opportunities impacted your tech career?

    I studied Computer Science, which can be seen as the traditional course. I actually did not do any coding before university.

    The best thing I did in my career was participating in a year-long placement. High-quality experience on my CV before graduating made me stand out from other candidates. In addition, completing it at a top software company in SAP allowed me to use my technical knowledge in a corporate environment. The skills you learn at university are beneficial but using them in a working setting is very different.

    What would you like to learn more about?

    I want to explore cloud and machine learning further. I believe this is the biggest thing in technology currently. I’m interested in learning more about how machine learning can be used in various areas of our lives. For example, the technology around Amazon Echo and Google Dot devices is fascinating, and I would love to learn more about how they work.

    Related: How to Become a Machine Learning Engineer

    What led you to pursue a career in tech?

    I started with an interest in gaming at a young age and was curious about the technology behind the scenes. Then, I went into web and mobile applications. I was curious about how apps worked and intrigued by how easy it was to create your own. I believe the main reason for my early passion for tech was its ability for users to be creative and express themselves with it. From age 12, I remember working on a mobile application where users could view comedic images and videos in secondary school. I always enjoyed making people laugh and technology brought that to life.

    How has your skillset evolved over the course of your career?

    Over time I have become more confident and excellent in my coding ability. I started Computer Science with a general interest in technology but became more interested in the programming side.

    Do you specialise in one area?

    Yes, I specialise in back-end development. I realised I was interested in algorithms and how systems work behind the scenes, making this area the best fit for me.

    Is your new role different from previous ones?

    I left a high-profile bank for an internet publishing/insurance company. My previous role was old-fashioned, less flexible, and had little room for progression. My new role is flexible and offers a transparent route for progression.

    Related: How to Maximize your Job Offer as a Remote Engineer

    What are some of the things you’re most excited about in your new role/company?

    I’m thrilled about the opportunity to learn from a range of different people. I’m looking forward to the chance to grow and develop myself on a personal level too.

    What was your job search experience like before you joined Hired?

    It was slow-paced and challenging to navigate. There were many unknowns and it was difficult to communicate with employers. I always felt out of the loop and did not know whether I would hear back.

    What would you tell someone curious about Hired?

    I would recommend it to anyone looking for a new role. With Hired, you will feel confident speaking to companies as they approach you first.

    Related: Want More Interviews and Better Matches? 5 Key Tips!

    Any general advice you’d like to give other tech professionals?

    The best thing I would say is to know your worth. If you are confident in your abilities, don’t settle for anything less than your expectations. Remember, the employer has to impress you as well. A job is a transaction, not a favour. 

    Congrats on the job, Simon! Interested in landing a great role in the UK like Simon did? Complete your free profile on Hired today!

    About Compare The Market

    Compare The Market is a price comparison website and provides customers with an easy way to make the right choice on a wide range of products including motor, home, life and energy. Founded in 2005, Compare the Market has between 501-1000  employees and is headquartered in London.

    Tech Stack

    JavaScript, Node.js, MongoDB, AWS, C#, .NET, iOS, Android, Docker, Git, HTML, CSS, Scala, Java, Kafka, Kubernetes, Python, React, Redux, Big Data

    Benefits

    Life/disability insurance, work-from-home flexibility, volunteer time off, flexible working hours, employee discount programs, and more. More

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    Engineering Manager or IC? Which Tech Career is Best for Me? (Video)

    Have you ever wondered whether to follow an Individual Contributor (IC) path or an Engineering Manager (EM)? According to the Hired State of Software Engineers report, one-third of engineers report they want to advance to become managers, while the remainder says they want to continue being ICs.

    What are the pros and cons of the Engineering Manager career path versus the Individual Contributor one? Let’s find out!

    Hired, along with our partner Exponent, recently completed a video series to explore engineering career advice. The series featured three of our talented engineers: Nico Thiebaut, Prakash Patel, and Dan Baker, discussing subjects such as:

    In this article, we recap Exponent’s conversation with Prakash Patel. Prakash is an Engineering Manager at Hired, a tech marketplace that matches talent with employers for roles around the world. He followed his passion for data engineering and solving complex data problems, spending two years as an Individual Contributor and one year as an Engineering Manager. 

    Although Engineering Managers currently command the highest salaries across all technology roles on Hired’s platform conventional wisdom says, 

    You should not become an Engineering Manager if you… 

    Want dedicated time to work on specific projects or hone in on programming skills Are uncomfortable managing team dynamics  Prefer to own your own code   Want to quickly build new technical skills Would rather your success be measured by your individual contributions.

    Here’s a quick summary of the conversation between Prakash Patel and Lucas from Exponent. To watch or listen to the full interview, scroll down to the bottom of the article.

    Engineering Managers often don’t get dedicated time to work on a specific project or hone their programming skills. What is your experience with the flip side of this: being focused on supporting your team and making them successful?

    Based on my time as an IC, I understand the pain points and problems my team faces and will face since I have already experienced it. Engineering Managers are responsible for the smooth execution of projects while minimizing the concerns that arise. 

    There are different phases of projects but every phase has a challenge. As an Engineering Manager, I support my team to succeed while minimizing all those concerns. I enjoy focusing on the vision of the company and blending it with the personal and professional growth of ICs.

    As an Engineering Manager, you’re working with an entire team’s dynamics, meaning you need to resolve conflicts when they arise. What do you think the upside is to managing the dynamics of a team?

    Conflicts are inevitable and as an EM, the more you handle them the better you’ll get. One upside is you help all Individual Contributors on the team succeed. Another upside is eventually you get better at saying no.

    There will be so many things to control as an EM. By managing these dynamics, I see I am helpIng my engineers wholly – both in their technical competence and project management abilities. 

    As an Individual Contributor, your code contributed to the codebase and you could point to what you owned. In your role as a manager, how does your involvement with the codebase change, and how does this impact your team’s work?

    Well, as an EM I don’t get a lot of opportunities to actively maintain the codebase but I do participate in the code reviews. I can always suggest ways to improve the tech stack and that’s where I help my team adjust the roadmap. WhIle I am not maintaining the codebase, I am motivating my team to participate in constructive code-based reviews to help make them better engineers. 

    Insight from Exponent 

    Your experience as an Individual Contributor helps here as you’ve developed the technical know-how and understand how to grow from progress from a junior to senior engineer in terms of coding ability.

    Related: Curious about tech salary trends? Check out the data in this review.

    As an EM, you’ll develop tech skills more slowly. You’ll be focused more on macro than learning new languages or libraries. What kind of skills do you build as an Engineering Manager?

    As an EM I developed a “think big” and “make it happen” attitude. On top of that, I learned to give constructive feedback and how to negotiate.

    When you’re an Engineering Manager, your team’s success determines your success. It can take longer to ship products and code. How is success measured as an EM, and what do you find fulfilling about it?

    My success is measured by the performance of my team and my individual reports. My goal is to develop technical excellence across the company as an EM. I enjoy driving project execution but I make sure my individual reports receive exciting, diverse responsibilities in a way that infuses the company’s culture with our team. 

    If you’re not sure whether to pursue an IC path or transition into an EM, here’s my advice: if you’re even a little interested in becoming an EM, talk about it with your manager. Ask them to provide more responsibilities that will help you become an EM. 

    From there, you can evaluate whether you enjoy the work and if that role feels like the right fit. If so, request more tasks. If you progress, you can eventually transition into an Engineering Manager role.

    Ultimately, the two paths are very different experiences so it’s all about what you enjoy. 

    How to use Hired to find Engineering Management roles

    Hired is completely free for jobseekers and it takes just minutes to create a profile. Once you upload your information, you’ll get interview requests from companies seeking talented candidates like you! Learn more about creating your Hired profile. 

    Already have a profile on Hired? Here are 5 Key Tips to Get Better Matches & More Interviews.

    Should you switch to an Engineering Manager role internally or seek out an EM role when looking for a new job?

    Transitioning within a company is a better and easier decision, especially since you are already familiar with your team. On the other hand, if you are an Individual Contributor seeking a job as an EM at a different company and you do not have that proven experience, it’s harder to make the jump.

    Eager to pursue a role as an Individual Contributor or Engineering Manager? Learn how Hired works for jobseekers!

    Click below to watch the full interview: 

    [embedded content] More

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    Tech Candidate Spotlight – Rodrigo Mejia Sanchez, Senior Software Engineer

    We’re excited to learn about your story, Rodrigo! Can you start by sharing a little bit about your educational background?

    I have a Bachelor’s in Computer Science from Georgia Tech. I had a bit of experience in programming before, but for all intents and purposes, I essentially started from scratch my freshman year of college. I have done online courses on sites such as Pluralsight, but I don’t have any certifications and would consider most of my education to come from school and on-the-job experience.

    Related: Check out our partners who offer upskilling and certification opportunities.

    Which educational opportunities have made the biggest impact on your tech career?

    Definitely my formal education. It gave me a structured learning environment with lots of resources to advance my career. I also gained many non-technical soft skills, understood how to go about engaging potential employers, and learned the “how” and “why” behind common software engineering processes.

    What would you like to learn more about?

    I would like to learn more about hardware. I personally enjoy tinkering with small microcontrollers and bare-bones computers such as Raspberry Pis and Arduinos. I’m also currently enamored by the maker movement and am trying to expand my 3D modeling/printing skills, and eventually pick up some woodworking skills too.

    What led you to pursue a career in tech?

    I went to a programming summer camp in middle school. I learned to make video games through a drag-and-drop game engine and fell in love with it. I didn’t touch it much again until college, but that summer made me certain tech was what I wanted to study and pursue.

    Related: What are the Best Programming Languages to Get a Software Developer Job?

    How has your skillset evolved over the course of your career?

    Initially, my skillset centered around a lot of theoretical knowledge and I had a focus on making “clever” code. Over time, I’ve learned that readable and easily changeable code is much more valuable. It’s easy to write new code but it’s hard to refactor and maintain it. I have also broadened my skillset with lots of Linux knowledge and that has been really valuable for debugging difficult production issues.

    If you choose to specialize in one area, what was it and why?

    I haven’t decided to specialize, but automation is a common theme in my job roles. I particularly like it because it’s often about scaling up an existing process and understanding how many different systems come together to solve a problem. Plus, it’s needed in almost all industries, so the diversity of problems keeps me engaged.

    Is your new role different from previous ones?

    I went from a large corporate financial firm, Goldman Sachs, to a small insurance tech startup called Owl.co. My title is roughly the same, but my current team/company feels much more focused. I enjoy that the work we do is directly related to the core business model, and I enjoy that the smaller size allows for more flexibility when coming up with solutions to engineering challenges.

    What are some of the things you’re most excited about in your new role or company?

    The opportunity to work within a smaller and more focused organization is a major aspect that excited me. Additionally, the prospect of being able to contribute to making an industry slightly less biased and more consumer-friendly is another plus. I had a goal in mind when seeking my next role. I wanted to work somewhere I could be proud of the product and the impact it had on people.

    What was your job search experience like before you joined Hired?

    It mainly consisted of LinkedIn recruiters reaching out to me and me applying on my own to companies I thought would be interesting. I had many traditional financial roles that recruiters reached out to me for. It was difficult to peel away from the perception that because I worked at a large financial firm, I was mainly interested in finance. I was actually more interested in working for places with an exciting product or interesting engineering problems. I wanted to turn away from finance to avoid being pigeonholed into a certain skill set or role.

    Related: Build Confidence and Take Control of Your Tech Job Search Series

    What’s your best advice for job seekers registered on the Hired platform? 

    Contrary to the “spray and pray” approach on other platforms such as LinkedIn, it makes more sense to focus on roles that actually seem interesting. I noticed that companies reaching out on Hired actually had a substantial interest already. So, it was less about casting a wide net to identify leads, and more about deciding if I could actually see myself working at the companies that contacted me. Also, being really responsive on the platform was key. I felt more eager to proceed with interviews when a company reached out on Hired as opposed to another platform.

    What would you tell someone who’s curious about Hired?

    Try it out! There’s no cost and creating a profile is really easy so you have nothing to lose. I had a really positive experience with companies and with Hired employees as they assisted me through my job search. Also, know that you can conveniently pause your profile if you find yourself with many ongoing interviews.

    Any general advice you’d like to give other tech professionals?

    Don’t be discouraged by many rejections. The technical interview is not a good measure of how good of an engineer you may be. It is simply a tool used during the recruiting process. Focus more on finding the right company for what you are looking for and you may be surprised at what you find in places you weren’t originally looking.

    Related: Get more practice with technical interviews through events like coding challenges.

    About Owl.co

    Owl.co is an enterprise software company leading a change in how insurers verify the legitimacy of claims by replacing a bias-prone and labor-intensive process with a data-driven one. Founded in 2018, Owl.co has between 51-200 employees and is headquartered in Vancouver.

    Tech Stack

    TypeScript, Clojure, Python, TensorFlow, AWS

    Benefits

    Health/dental/vision/life/disability insurance, performance bonus, 401K matching, paid time off, mentorship opportunities, flexible working hours, and more. More

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    What are the Best Programming Languages to Get a Software Developer Job?

    Hired & Exponent partner for engineering career advice video series

    Hired, along with our partner Exponent, recently completed a video series exploring such as what the best programming languages for software developers to get a job. The series featured three of our talented engineers: Nico Thiebaut, Prakash Patel, and Dan Baker, discussing subjects such as:

    How to Become a Machine Learning EngineerTop Programming Languages to Land a Job (in 2022).Engineering Manager vs. Individual Contributor (IC) Path

    Dan Baker is a former boot camper, now an Engineering Manager at Hired, a tech marketplace that matches talent with employers for roles around the world. He’s currently leading the work on the Hired Assessments product, helping candidates show their skills and find their dream jobs. 

    Based on the Hired State of Software Engineers report, these “top” skills or languages are taken from data on more than 360,000 interactions between companies and candidates on the platform. 

    Here’s a quick summary of the conversation Dan Baker had with Lucas from Exponent. To watch the full interview, scroll down to the bottom of the article.

    First, what are the top programming languages for individual contributors (IC) in software development? 

    Based on the report data: Go, Ruby on Rails, Scala, Ruby, and React Native. 

    What are the most in-demand programming skills for managers?

    Ruby on Rails, Scala, AWS, Google Cloud, and Ruby. 

    What are engineers’ favorite programming languages and skills?

    According to survey data of tech talent on the Hired platform, it’s Python, Javascript, Java, Typescript, C-Sharp, and Go.

    What did you find the most interesting about the top programming languages among developers this year?

    Well-established technologies valuable to new programmers due to their staying power

    When I got started, Ruby was the main language that was normal. It was easy for people to understand. It was the first language for a lot of people. It’s no surprise to me that Ruby on Rails, as the first usable framework, has so much popularity. 

    Today there are probably not that many projects getting started in Ruby but there are many being maintained in it. That really speaks to the legacy nature of coding. 

    Trendy or not, programming languages on the rise help employability

    What stands out to me are languages like Go and Scala because they seem to be newer languages on the rise. People aren’t learning Go and getting Go engineers because they have to. It’s because they want to build new things with Go. 

    To an extent, that’s the truth with React Native but it’s more so the nature of React dominating the front-end framework landscape.

    Do you encourage your team to regularly learn new technical skills? What skills specifically? 

    I frame my advice to my direct reports around:

    How we can position the story for the resume for their next job? What’s the best way to sell this for you to get a promotion internally? How can you sell this for yourself for your next role? 

    Usually, it’s less about the technology and more about solving a business case. That’s what will matter to the hiring manager in the future. The technology is usually secondary. 

    One of my engineers is deep in Terraform right now, another knows more about React than anybody it seems, and then another knows the ins and outs of Django in a way that probably very few people know. When I’m suggesting people learn new skills it’s really catered to the use case, 100%.

    What programming language is best for someone just learning to code?

    If I was speaking to somebody who is just starting to code, I would recommend learning Rust. It’s exciting because it’s a new language approaching programming from a very type-centric point of view and is very low-level control while having high-level usability. 

    Insight from Exponent 

    There are often technologies probably best suited to solve a particular business case and are extremely important to learn for that reason. There are also technologies probably always very popular amongst engineers, maybe because they scratch an itch and they’re kind of technically interesting but maybe they are the wrong puzzle piece or are a bit too new for whatever you’re trying to solve on the job. 

    What’s a programming language mistake?

    Many times I’ve seen companies make the wrong decision by supporting engineers to do things they’re curious about that don’t align with the business case. Then, the current business case they need to move forward is not addressed so they have to pivot to something that does make sense. The engineer maybe gets a skillset but it isn’t even that sellable – why? It never was usable at the business.

    What about jobseekers who don’t know these ‘best programming languages?’ How do you recommend they stay competitive in their job search?

    The top five skills are interesting because you get an idea of the heavy hitters and what languages people for the most. It depends on where you are in your career and how much you understand about where you want your career to go. 

    For an engineer who has a little bit of experience but has a good idea of what they want to do, I would say, look in that subset and maybe it doesn’t matter which is the top language.

    Maybe it’s more so, which programming language do you have some experience in – and will it be viable to enough potential employers? Looking at this list, I guarantee the people who are best at Scala don’t know much about React Native. 

    Tip from Exponent

    Most engineers won’t become an expert in all of these. You definitely want to assess where your own experience is and take it based on that. 

    Can you describe how Hired Technical Assessments are designed to assess a candidate’s technical ability? How can jobseekers do well in technical assessments?

    Benefits of Hired Assessments

    My advice to any potential client using the product is to understand what an online technical assessment can do and what it can’t. The biggest value add is not that you’re going to get an automated answer to whether this candidate is right for the role. 

    You’re going to have an asynchronous interaction. A candidate’s going to do the assessment when it makes sense for them. The employer is going to review their work when it makes sense for them, that’s first and foremost. 

    Employers can review their work, and playback how they completed it. They can see if the candidate is within an acceptable range of performance, and how they executed problems. See what kind of approaches they took and if it makes sense to you (the employer). See if they are using coding patterns successfully demonstrating a level of expertise. 

    Benefits to jobseekers

    Candidates have the opportunity to show their thinking more than simply trying to solve the problem. In some cases, employers are looking, getting so many good candidates that they’re only able to look at the top one percent of them. 

    However, in these cases, no one really enjoys or does well in a game where only the top 1% are winning. You want to find a smaller pond where you can actually show a connection to the employer and show that you thought out your work. 

    For candidates, unfortunately, with the state of the industry and in online assessments, LeetCode reigns supreme. I recommend brushing up on that because that’s what most of these products are geared towards. 

    I do see a trend slowly moving away from purely LeetCode questions to framework-based questions that include a file system to find the bug, fix the bug, create a new file, and add a new pattern. 

    That’s where we see candidates thinking creatively and how they actually interact within an existing structure. That’s going to be more valuable – showing employers how you’re going to actually perform in the role. rather than you can do Fizz-buzz or bubble sort.

    Insight from Exponent

    In my own experience, I have seen more interviews where the company crafted a test case that more closely mirrored a real-world coding situation in which you had to diagnose a bug in a code base that probably looked like their actual code base.

    With that comes the impression that they care about your time and like to test skills that closely match what you’re going to do on the job. This is a bit different than the more esoteric LeetCode tests that you may be doing. I think it feels more valuable from a candidate’s perspective.

    Interviewing advice for software developers

    I think that’s something candidates need to be aware of as they choose which companies they engage with. As somebody interviewing a candidate I know I am selling as much as I am evaluating. Candidates should get a sense of how well the company they are interviewing with is selling them. 

    If they’re not selling you at all, what does that tell you about the company and the culture you’d enter? On the other hand, if they’re selling you 100%, they’re not really evaluating. What does that tell you about the mess you’d enter? 

    There’s a healthy balance where employers care about you and the experience you’re having, while also asking meaningful questions relevant to the role.

    Candidates should know who they want to interact with but it’s also really important for employers to ensure they’re creating an experience that makes a candidate feel safe in the context of their whole life cycle, from candidate to employee, to ex-employee. 

    Tip from Exponent

    The technical interview experience you go through is, to some degree, a proxy of the engineering culture you may enter. It can be the best signal you have before you sign the paper.

    Ask, where is the demand?

    One takeaway from looking at this is to understand where the demand is and how important it is to find the right demand/supply ratio. That could be one. If there’s one person that needs one engineer of one type, then there you go. You can get that role and you can be happily ever after at that company. 

    If you just choose the one most in demand, it also might be the most candidates going after that skill set as well. What you see yourself doing matters most because ultimately when you get the role you have to show up and do the work. So find something you’re interested in. That’s where you’re going to thrive and succeed long term.

    Insight from Exponent

    If you have spent the last five years working in databases and think you need to learn React to be employable but your passion is databases, then that might not be the technology to learn.

    Learn more languages 

    It’s easy to think back on when you learned the language that you actually made your bread and butter with, it was hard to learn and you probably don’t want to do that again. The truth is that with every year that passes, the way people learn coding languages is better and easier than it was the year before. Remember when Stack Overflow changed the game? There’s a time that didn’t even exist. You couldn’t ask a question – you’d get an odd forum and esoteric responses or you’d have to open a paper book. So, learn a little bit about more languages and realize you’re never pigeonholed to one.

    Tip from Exponent

    The first language you learn is going to be the hardest but after that, you establish mental models and understand how to read documentation. It’ll be much easier to pick up new technologies after mastering one or two.

    Understand concepts in programming  

    Learning more languages also speaks to how much you start understanding real, valuable concepts in programming. I recommend the book, Learning Javascript Design Patterns. It reviews what you need to do to write really complex code. There is the specific stuff like hoisting but also polymorphism, ways to curry different functions to build into other ones, and there’s direct inheritance.

    Understanding deeper patterns will make you a stronger programmer and enable you to do more powerful things. When an interviewer looks at a submission and says, “Oh they’re currying a function. That’s an interesting approach.” Even if you aren’t able to do it, if employers watch it (which we really encourage our clients to do), they’ll see you know your chops. At the end of the day, no business is making money by having a programmer who can write fizz-buzz the fastest. 

    Ready to complete a free profile and sit back while employers search for you? Learn how Hired works for jobseekers!

    Click below to watch the full interview, including when Dan and Exponent’s Lucas fall down a rabbit hole discussing the relationship between javascript, cryptocurrency, and building blockchain. 

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    Tech Candidate Spotlight – Ricardo Xavier, Software Engineer

    Thanks for joining us, Ricardo! Can you share a little bit about your educational background?

    I have my Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and I later pursued a Masters degree in Distributed Systems, which I completed in 2019.

    Which educational opportunities have made the biggest impact on your tech career?

    My Bachelor’s degree was the experience that really shaped my way of thinking when approaching problems. It made me realise building software is more than making something fulfill a basic functionality. It is also about fulfilling non-functional requirements and thinking ahead about possible issues we may encounter during the whole software lifecycle.

    What would you like to learn more about?

    Taking into account my new position in software engineering, I would like to dig into some of the most common databases and how they work internally. Non-tech related, I would like to read more about soft skills like time management.

    What led you to pursue a career in tech?

    My interest in solving problems using software and my natural curiosity about things are the two main reasons behind my pursuit of a tech career. Since I was a child, I knew what I wanted to do when I was older. I was lucky to have a computer at an early age.

    This unlocked my passion for computers and since then, I’ve spent a lot of time in front of a screen. However, I only began coding in high school and by then, I already knew I wanted to study Computer Science at university.

    Related: Hired Releases 2022 State of Software Engineers Data Report

    How has your skillset evolved over the course of your career?

    It’s definitely still evolving. I feel like there is a lot to learn. Initially, I felt having knowledge gaps wasn’t okay but with time I’ve realized it is totally fine – I just need to continue working on filling the gaps.

    If you chose to specialize in one area, what was it and why?

    I chose to specialise in Distributed Systems. I am fascinated by the problems that arise when software needs to scale up and how every little detail can make the difference in these systems.

    Is your new role different from previous ones?

    It’s completely different. Previously, I worked for one of the top low code platforms on the market. My role was to ensure that one of the high availability services was fully operational all the time and I was tasked with incrementally adding functionality to it.

    My new position is a data-centric engineering position in which the biggest challenges are connected to ingesting and processing big loads of data.

    Related: Tech Candidate Spotlight – Kyle Mercer

    What are some of the things you’re most excited about in your new role?

    Making software that scales with large volumes of data is something that excites me. Entering this new area that I don’t know a lot about is also a great opportunity for learning.

    What was your job search experience like before you joined Hired?

    I’ve only been through the job search once after college. It was the traditional way of finding a job where I created a CV and searched for positions on numerous websites. It was a tiring and frustrating experience.

    What’s your best advice for job seekers registered on the Hired platform? 

    Build a strong profile! Highlight your best achievements, show the impact you had in your previous job experiences, and share the value you can bring to a new company. If you have a hard time assessing your impact, ask for a second opinion from someone who has worked closely with you.

    They will probably be able to identify things you’ve done that impacted the team/company positively. Remember that a team achievement is also your achievement, so I encourage you to share those achievements with the world.

    What would you tell someone who’s curious about Hired?

    If you’re looking for a job in tech, give it a try. You have high chances of finding a great match for your profile. Hired is new to HRs in my local area so I was unsure of whether I would find something that would match my profile and skills here. However, I was surprised to see Hired got me my best offer after searching for jobs on multiple platforms. It has brought me here so I definitely recommend that you try it out.

    Any general advice you’d like to give other tech professionals?

    The best advice I can give a tech professional was given to me a few years ago at a college conference: Take half an hour each week to learn about and work on yourself. It will bring huge benefits in the long run, and you should focus on learning both hard and soft skills.

    About LandTech

    LandTech is a software company building B2B SaaS Products for the Property Industry, empowering property developers to build the places that communities need to thrive. Founded in 2014, LandTech has between 51-200 employees and is headquartered in London.

    Tech Stack

    Node.js, MongoDB, EC2, JavaScript, Vue.JS, AWS, Kubernetes, Elasticsearch, TypeScript, Test Driven Development (TDD), Continuous Integration (CI), Continuous Delivery (CD), DevOps, PostgreSQL

    Benefits

    Health/dental/vision/life/disability insurance, maternity and paternity benefits, unlimited time off, tuition reimbursement, conferences reimbursement, flexible working hours, and more. More

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    Tech Candidate Spotlight – Graham Hensley, Senior Engineering Manager

    Hi Graham! Can you tell us about your educational background?

    I got a traditional degree in Computer Science several years before the introduction of the first iPhone. I taught myself Android application development through reading the books of Reto Meier and attending conferences and meetup groups. I naturally found my way into leadership over the course of my career because I never had a problem explaining tech to non-tech people. 

    Which, if any, educational opportunities, have made the biggest impact on your tech career?

    I have learned the most from meetup groups and gathering with fellow hobbyists and professionals. Passion can be contagious, so hanging out in groups where everyone is motivated to learn and develop a skill will give you the energy to keep going. 

    What would you like to learn more about?

    I’ve been pushing myself to better understand the crypto field and writing smart contracts in Solidity. 

    Related: What’s the Deal with Web 3.0 & How Does it Affect Tech Talent?, Partners for Upskilling

    What led you to pursue a career in tech?

    My parents were both in the field and understood how much it would be a part of the future. They made sure I was always exposed to tech. My first computer was an IBM 386. My parents showed me how I could use code to make the computer play guessing games with me.

    How has your skillset evolved over the course of your career?

    I wouldn’t say I’ve chased fads, but as the world has changed from Windows apps to websites, mobile apps, and crypto contracts, I have been following along and trying to adapt to what companies and consumers want. 

    Is your new role different from previous ones?

    This new role is a change of industry. I went from being the manager of a team of Application Developers to being a manager of a team of Hardware and Firmware Engineers. 

    What are some of the things you’re most excited about in your new role and company?

    The opportunity to learn new things. After 3 years at my last gig, I didn’t feel like I was growing and I felt that I was just maintaining the status quo. It’s great to be outside of my comfort zone and learning new processes and acronyms. I was also worried that my skills would not transfer over and that somehow I had plateaued. However, it’s been very reassuring to change companies and still feel like I know how to make an impact.

    What was your job search experience like before you joined Hired?

    It was slow. I was searching over the web, looking for job descriptions that felt right. I was constantly writing intro letters and dealing with no or slow responses from companies. 

    What’s your best advice for job seekers registered on the Hired platform?

    Follow the site guides to get your profile in good shape – and then relax. The process works and you will start hearing about really interesting opportunities.

    What would you tell someone who’s curious about Hired?

    Try it!! 

    About Mason America

    Mason America is a software development company transforming mobile deployments the same way AWS transformed website development, making it easy for anyone to turn an idea into a smart product and ship it to anywhere in the world. Mason has between 51-200 employees and is headquartered in Seattle, Washington.

    Tech Stack

    Android, Node.JS, AWS, Python, AOSP, Git, Terraform, Ansible, Kubernetes, Docker

    Benefits

    Health/dental/vision/life/disability insurance, maternity and paternity benefits, fitness reimbursement, mental health benefits, flexible working hours, matching charitable donations, and more. More