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Author Archives: Dave Fecak

Dave Fecak
Dave Fecak has been recruiting software engineers for start-ups since 1998 and he has served as the founder and president of the Philadelphia Area Java Users’ Group since 2000. Dave is often cited and published on career topics for technology professionals, and he blogs at JobTipsForGeeks.com.

What If We … Like We Hire Programmers – What Questions Are Appropriate?

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Programmers often experience a high degree of frustration during the interview process, and one primary source of annoyance is how the programmer perceives the line of questioning or exercises. In a buyer’s market where supply exceeds demand, hiring managers will often be a bit more selective in evaluating candidates, and talent evaluators may request or require more specific skill-sets than ...

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How to Hire Geeks, Brand Your Shop, and Beat the “Talent Shortage”

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As a recruiter of software engineers, I hear every day how difficult it is for software companies to find technical talent. If hiring engineers was easy, I wouldn’t be in business. Using a recruiter is one way to have qualified potential employees neatly packaged and delivered, but there are several other strategies that forward-thinking firms can implement to differentiate themselves ...

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Interview Prep For Geeks

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Failing an interview due to a lack of qualifications is forgivable, but it is tragic when highly qualified candidates do not get an offer due to being unprepared. With the amount of information freely available today, the time and effort required to prepare for an interview is extremely low and a relatively small investment to make in your career. Typically ...

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Things Great Engineers (almost) Never Say

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My job as a recruiter of software engineers and my 12 years as a user group leader have provided me the opportunity to speak with many talented technologists since entering the business in 1998, and through my interactions I’ve been able to notice several behavioral patterns shared by those that are considered to be the most skilled. To develop a ...

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Disrupt Tech Recruiting II – So You Want Ari Gold?

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After publishing How to Disrupt Technical Recruiting – Hire an Agent and reading the subsequent feedback from readers at Hacker News and elsewhere, it is clear that at least some subset of engineers believe two things: The technical recruiting industry is at times remarkably flawed, and the financial incentives inherent to the system will not always lead a recruiter to ...

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How To Disrupt Technical Recruiting – Hire an Agent

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A recent anti-recruiter rant posted to a news group and a subsequent commentary on HackerNews got me thinking about the many ways that tech recruiting and the relationship between recruiters and the tech community is broken. I saw a few comments referencing that the community always says how broken it is, but no one tries to fix it. Here are ...

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TALK! It’s An Interview, Not An Interrogation

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Several times a year I will get a call or email from a hiring manager telling me that an interview never really ‘went anywhere’ because the candidate seemed either unwilling or unable to dive very deep into technical topics. It can be impossible for an interviewer to accurately gauge whether the cause was a lack of tech skills or just ...

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How Hackers Choose Tools

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Recently, a 2001 blog post with the title Java’s Cover written by Paul Graham (of Y Combinator fame) spread across Twitter and was linked by all the other usual tech site suspects. The piece was about what Graham called ‘hacker’s radar‘, which he describes as the ability of hackers to ‘develop a nose for good (and bad) technology‘. For his ...

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Overqualified is Overdiagnosed

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I’ve been inspired by comments on prior articles to discuss the sensitive topics of ‘overqualification’ and ageism. My Why You Didn’t Get The Job and Why You Didn’t Get The Interview posts were republished on a few sites, resulting in some active debates where at some point a participant states that the real reason that they weren’t hired was that ...

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Debate Breakdown – Advice From A JUG Leader

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It’s been a week since I posted “Advice From A JUG Leader – Learn a Different Language” and it seems to have ruffled at least a few feathers in the Java community. As the article has been re-posted and bounced around on Twitter, I have had some opportunity to interact with some members of the Java community who have strong ...

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