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What Makes an Outstanding Senior Java Developer

 

Java continues to be one of the most popular and in-demand programming languages around, even though it was created about 30 years ago. Not only is it in wide use in legacy applications, but tons of code is produced in Java on a daily basis, asserting the amount of staying power people believe Java has even as alternatives emerge.

However, simply knowing Java isn’t enough to excel in the field. If you want to be an outstanding senior Java developer, here is what you need to bring to the table.

Published in Staffing News

Our Advice for Age Proofing Your Tech Resume

 

While making a hiring decision based solely on a candidate’s age is potentially illegal, that does not mean that age-related discrimination does not occur. At times, younger workers have an edge when it comes to technology roles, as employers assume they are more adept naturally. As a result, older professionals may need to take certain steps to ensure that age-related stereotypes do not prevent them from landing an interview.

Luckily, it is not hard to age-proof your resume. Here is how to get started:

 

Remove Old Jobs

There is no rule that says you have to list all of your previous employers on your resume. In fact, doing so can actually allow hiring managers to estimate your age, and that may not work in your favor. Plus, in many cases, hiring managers are more concerned about what you have done as of late, not what you accomplished 15 years ago.

Instead of including everything, focus only on relevant recent experience, going back no more than 10 or 15 years, max. Include details that cover all of the requirements in the job description, highlighting applicable accomplishments and quantifying the data whenever possible.

 

Avoid Unnecessary Dates

If you earned your degree or certifications near the start of your career, then listing the dates you received your degree or other credentials will make it easier to guess your age. Instead of including the date, omit it entirely. While the hiring manager will want to know that you earned a degree or certification, they do not necessarily need to know when, so do not think that you have to include anything that creates a timeline in this case.

 

Update Your Contact Options

Did you know that your email account domain could lead a hiring manager to assume you are older? It’s true. Similarly, listing a landline could cause them to make assumptions too.

Today, you want to be seen as tech-savvy. Start by making sure your email domain is one that younger professionals would use, like a free account through Gmail. Additionally, only list a smartphone number on your resume, and do so without labeling it with “cell” or “mobile,” as that is unnecessary.

 

Get Rid of the Objective Statement

The objective statement used to be a standard addition on any resume. If you haven’t searched for a new job in quite some time, then your last one may have featured that section. And it’s time to remove it.

Objective statements fell out of favor some time ago. After all, they didn’t really provide hiring managers with much value, so it shouldn’t be a surprise. By keeping it, you don’t just look like you haven’t kept up with the times, it also makes you appear older as younger workers would never list one.

Instead, craft a high-quality professional summary that highlights your strengths and how you can provide value to a prospective employer. This is much more impactful and ensures your resume matches with current trends.

Reach Out to The Armada Group for More Resume Help!

By following the tips above, you can age-proof your resume. If you would like more information, the team at The Armada Group can help you craft this critical document. Contact us to speak with one of our staff members today and see how our resume writing expertise can benefit you.

 

Published in Staffing News

Wht to Know About C Programming Language This Year

 

The C programming language can easily be viewed as an anomaly. Unlike some languages, it has really stood the test of time, remaining relevant after more than 45 years. Plus, C is consistently popular, with many developers still enjoying the language to this day.

However, even with its longevity, that does not mean C does not experience change. With that in mind, here is what you need to know about the C programming language this year.

 

C18: The New Standard

In late 2018, a new C standard was ratified. Labeled C18, the updated standard is not necessarily something that is dramatically different from prior versions. Instead, it includes more fixes, essentially functioning as more of a continuation of C17 than anything else. In fact, there hasn’t been a significant change to C since C11, where multi-threading support, variable length arrays, anonymous structures and unions, along with a few other differences became official.

By and large, only compiler writers who have a desire to be 100 percent conformant will need to take a deep dive into C18. Nearly everyone else will be able to continue per the usual.

 

C Remains the Common Language

C is still considered the lowest-level portable language. As a result, many compilers still output C source code, and will likely continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

Since C is considered a common language, its long-term use is still supported by the community. While C++ has made some headway in recent years, including for open-source compilers, C++ code is usually a bit larger than if C is used. Code size can be important, particularly when it comes to IoT and the use of microcontrollers, allowing C to actually gain market share between 2005 and 2018.

 

Programmers Support C

While most programmers do not learn C as their first language, C is incredibly popular as a second or third language to pick up. Additionally, it is a functional stepping stone for learning C++, which is technically a superset of C, thanks to how easy C is to pick up by comparison.

As a result, most programmers support using C professionally. This increases the likelihood that they will consider it as a viable option for a variety of projects, as enjoyment and prevalence can play a role. Additionally, it is still encountered by programmers on a regular basis, keeping it highly relevant for them and increasing the odds that they will add it to their repertoire if they do not know C already.

Ultimately, while options like Go and Rust are increasing in popularity and, at times, are considered more modern and better alternatives, C is so integrated into the world of technology that the likelihood it will fade into obscurity remains very slim. C is as much a part of the past as it is the future, and programmers from around the world are not inclined to see that change.

 

Looking to Brush Up on Your Skills? Contact the Experts at The Armada Group!

If you would like to know more about the C programming language, the team at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with a member of our skilled team today and see how our programming trends expertise can benefit you.

 

Published in IT Infrastructure

The Mindset Managers Need to Grow

 

For a company to remain successful, it needs to be prepared to evolve with the times. If managers don’t maintain the proper mindsets, they can easily become roadblocks to advancement instead of champions for it. If you want to reach new heights in 2019, here are the mindsets you need to embrace to make sure that forward progress is possible.

 

Connection

People have a fundamental need to connect with others, but many managers try to shut themselves off from their teams, fearing that getting to close would lead to consequences. Typically, this attitude is shortsighted, as it is costing you far more than you risk by forging these connections.

 

When you actively strive to connect with your employees, you allow relationships to form. This can breed loyalty and create a healthier culture, as everyone will feel like they belong.

 

Growth

You can’t improve the performance of your business without embracing growth, and this doesn’t just include the companies. Supporting your professional growth as well as that of your team is also critical, ensuring everyone has the proper knowledge and skills to be at their best.

 

Make your own development a priority as this ensures your employees will have a solid example to follow. Then, provide them with opportunities too to make sure everyone can take steps forward.

 

Trust

Without trust, no team can thrive. Managers often worry about providing their staff with too much autonomy, fearing that, by letting go, something will go awry. However, when you give your employees some degree of freedom, they typically rise to the occasion. Plus, it frees you up to focus on your own tasks, including those that can generate growth.

 

Often, leaders need to extend trust first and not wait for it to be earned. By embracing this approach, your team builds confidence quickly and will strive to meet your expectations. When trust is withheld initially, it can breed discontent and anxiety, especially if your workers don’t know what they need to do to make progress. While allowing yourself to give trust when you are uncertain is difficult, it’s usually worth the effort.

 

Purpose

Employees aren’t going to be at their best when the company’s core focus in on increasing profits. Often, workers feel little benefit from the organization improving their bottom line, so you need to give them something more if you want them to excel.

 

Instead of focusing on profit, adopt a purpose mindset. When professionals can work on something that is intrinsically meaningful and fulfilling, productivity and engagement rise. This can lead to growth and, subsequently, a higher level of profitability, all without making either of those a core focus.

 

Are You Looking For the Most-Talented Tech Candidates?

By adopting the mindsets above, your company can grow in 2019. If you’d like to learn more, the skilled staff at The Armada Group can help. Contact us with questions today and see how our growth mindset expertise can benefit you.

 

 

Published in Hiring Managers

What Exactly Is Robotic Process Automation

 

While most companies understand that embracing automation is smart business, many leaders are only beginning to grasp the nuances of what is available today. Even as robotic process automation (RPA) garners more attention, not everyone fully understands what the technology can do.

 

If you are one of the many who is wondering what RPA entails, here’s what you need to know.

 

What Robotic Process Automation Is

At its simplest, RPA is a form of business process automation that takes advantage of next-level artificial intelligence (AI). It creates a mechanism to remove manual tasks that are highly repetitive and tedious from the hands of your staff, creating a way to increase overall efficiency.

 

At a deeper level, RPA is a technology that allows humans to create software that can accomplish specific tasks within existing applications, such as processing a transaction, triggering responses, leveraging data, or communicating with other systems. It makes the most of both APIs and user interfaces to fully automate a business process from end-to-end.

 

RPA also have the ability to combine the work of a human user with the software, creating more potential service capabilities. These solutions are often considered hybrids, but embrace RPA at their core as a means of boosting productivity.

 

What Robotic Process Automation Isn’t

RPA isn’t necessarily a method for reducing staff requirements or eliminating certain professions. Instead, it’s a technology that empowers employees to focus on tasks that genuinely necessitate a human touch, such as customer-centric activities or those that require creative thinking.

 

While it may help lighten workloads, RPA is more often seen as an opportunity to reassess staff priorities and realign their duties and objectives to make the most of the new paradigm. Employees can be more productive or branch out into new arenas, creating pathways for growth that can benefit both the workers and the company as a whole.

 

The Benefits of Robotic Process Automation

Typically, RPA allows monotonous tasks to be handled by a technology instead of your workers. Often, these are some of the most hated duties in the company, so allowing them to be managed by a machine can actually boost morale.

 

Additionally, it gives your staff the ability to focus on more revenue-generating, customer-centric, or innovative activities. This can enhance productivity and profitability while also providing a business a competitive edge over companies that have yet to embrace the power of the technology.

 

Ultimately, RPA can be a valuable tool for any company, particularly those who leverage it to enhance productivity and create the needed space to promote innovation and discovery or provide better support to potential and existing customers.

 

If you would like to know more about robotic process automation or are seeking an IT professional with RPA experience to help implement the technology in your company, the experienced staff at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our knowledgeable team members today and see how our expertise can benefit you.

 

 

3 Unlikely Traits that Extraordinary Tech Leaders Have in Common

 

There is often some level of debate regarding which characteristics truly define great leaders in a company. Some assume that subject-matter expertise is the most critical while others think that decisiveness is imperative.

 

While both of those can provide value, there are some unexpected traits that many of today’s greatest tech leaders share. By working to cultivate these in yourself, you can excel in your leadership role and make sure your team is primed to perform to the best of their capabilities.

 

With that in mind, here are three unlikely traits that extraordinary tech leaders have in common.

 

  1. The Willingness to Trust First

Many managers assume that trust needs to be earned. Similarly, they feel that a single misstep on the part of another is justification to make them re-earn trust, even if it is a relatively minor infraction.

 

This approach can create a contentious situation, leading employees to feel they need to either show-off to showcase they are trustworthy or walk on eggshells to avoid harming the relations. However, if you give trust freely to your team, they usually rise to the occasion and may even exceed your expectations.

 

By believing in your staff and their abilities quickly, you demonstrate your confidence in what they can do. This can significantly boost morale, increase productivity, and potentially spur innovation, especially if you create a safe environment for the expression of ideas.

 

  1. Understanding the Power of Humility

Some managers believe that humility is a character flaw. They assume that it’s a sign of meekness or low self-esteem, largely because, to be humble, one must be open to recognizing their own shortcomings.

 

However, contrary to popular belief, humility is rarely a sign of weakness. In reality, humble leaders are more adept at building meaningful connections with their team and colleagues and are also more willing to help when the need arises, ensuring the success of the group during trying times.

 

Humility also means being able to admit your mistakes, a sign of accountability, or recognize when someone has a better idea than you. This creates an environment where your team learns to trust and respect you, enhancing the overall dynamic.

 

  1. A Penchant for Active Listening

Too many managers fail to listen actively. Instead of genuinely absorbing the information as it is given, they simply wait for their turn to speak, formulating their response before they have heard all of the details.

 

When you are an active listener, you are able to discover what others need with greater ease. You’ll also be more open to their contributions in general, ensuring that you don’t overlook an amazing idea simply because you weren't receptive.

 

Ultimately, the three characteristics above are often hallmarks of great IT managers, making them worth developing if you want to create the best environment possible. If you would like to learn more about the traits that define extraordinary tech leaders, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with a member of our knowledgeable team today and see how our leadership expertise can benefit you.

 

 

Tech Jobs

 

It’s no secret that tech professionals are in demand. However, certain specialties are growing at an unprecedented pace, particularly since low unemployment is common in the labor market.

 

If you are considering switching into an IT career or want to know about your current path’s potential, here are seven growing tech jobs and how much you can earn in each role.

 

  1. Help Desk / Support Desk Technician

Most large enterprises and government agencies have support desk technicians on staff to ensure that internal employees have access to help when it is required. In most cases, support desks are divided into tiers, reflecting the knowledge base needed to perform in the roles.

 

Tier 1 professionals are viewed as entry-level and can earn salaries between $32,000 and $54,000, depending on the person’s amount of experience. Tier 2 generally begins near $38,000 and can reach just shy of $64,000. At the top, Tier 3 professionals may make between $48,500 and $81,500.

 

  1. Network Administrator

Keeping internal networks operational and prepared to handle the potential load is a must for any business. Plus, planning for expansions to accommodate growth is often a necessity.

 

At the low end, network administrators usually earn around $55,000. However, after acquiring experience in the field, a salary of over $104,000 is possible.

 

  1. System Administrator

Another critical business role is the system administrator. Typically, these professionals begin their careers near $64,500. With time and experience, some are able to cross the six-figure mark, reaching a salary of around $102,500.

 

 

  1. Business Intelligence Analyst

Successful business intelligence analysts usually have skills in areas like database technology, reporting, and analytics. As companies work to leverage their data more effectively, business intelligence analyst salaries have been rising.

 

Initially, professionals in this field can earn just shy of $84,000. At the upper echelons, salaries over $175,000 may be possible.

 

  1. Database Developer

Another critical role in the data field is the database developer. These professionals manage and create enterprise databases, ensuring information is properly organized and stored while remaining accessible.

 

Usually, a database developer can begin with a salary near $97,750. After acquiring experience in the field, the best and brightest may be able to earn $175,750 annually.

 

  1. Data Security Administrator

As security continues to be a top concern for businesses large and small, data security administrators have seen their skills become increasingly valuable. They ensure that all security measures are up to date and monitor company systems while implementing sound security strategies.

Even those new to the data security administrator profession can make $100,000 a year. As their knowledge and skills grow, salari

es as high as $168,750 are certainly possible.

 

  1. Data Scientist

Data scientists collect data and analyze it in the hopes of identifying patterns that can assist with critical business decisions. Programming skills are typically a must as well as communication skills, allowing these professionals to share their findings with those who may not be as tech-savvy.

 

Most data scientists start their careers around the $100,000 mark and can earn salaries near $168,000 as they gain experience.

 

All of the tech positions above are in-demand today. If you are interested in learning more or are seeking new employment opportunities, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to discuss your career goals today and see how our expertise can benefit you.

 

 

Full Stack Developer

 

More and more companies are looking for full stack developers. These jacks of all trades have detailed knowledge of every software development layer, understand front- and back-end technologies, and can create fully functional products from prototypes.

 

Since it requires a substantial amount of knowledge to become a full stack developer, not everyone chooses to pursue the profession. That means those that do are in high demand, often commanding large salaries based on their robust skill set.

 

If you’re ready to increase your level of competency so you can become a full stack developer, and possibly land a six-figure salary, here are some e-books worth reading.

 

HTML5 & CSS3 for the Real World

If your looking to gain a strong foundation in web development technologies, this easy-to-follow guide is ideal for the task, providing you with the fundamental skills in two of the most commonly used tools in the world of web development. There’s hands-on instruction, ensuring you have a chance to get the skills down, and information about building exceptional websites as efficiently as possible.

 

Jump Start Responsive Web Design

Now that a smartphone is in nearly everyone’s pocket, websites need to display properly on more than just computer screens. This e-book provides guidance on using HTML and CSS to create responsive designs that will appear correctly on any screen, making it a valuable text for any would-be full stack developer.

 

Researching UX: User Research

Ultimately, a project is only successful if it appeals to your audience. This e-book teaches you about user research, including a number of techniques for collecting data, and how the information can help you create designs that are most likely to resonate with your visitors.

 

 

JavaScript: Novice to Ninja

JavaScript is a leading programming language, so every full stack developer should know how to use it well. If you aren’t already familiar with JavaScript, this e-book will get you up to speed, giving you the ability to add new functionalities to apps and create code that is easy to maintain.

 

Jumpstart Git

Essentially, Git is a version control system that allows collaborating developers to track cumulative changes that are made to a project, ensuring everything is centralized and accessible. This e-book explains the value of Git, as well as methods for maintaining control of both your assets and your code.

 

By reading the e-books listed above, you can improve your skillset and pave the way to a strong career as a full stack developer, increasing your odds of landing a six-figure salary as you progress in your profession.

 

If you are seeking out full stack developer opportunities or would like to learn more about the skills required to be successful in these roles, the professionals at The Armada Group can help you explore your options. Contact us to speak with one of our knowledgeable staff members today and see how our services can help you launch or progress in your full stack developer career.

 

 

 Mentor

 

A lot of professionals have heard that having a mentor can potentially benefit their career. But, since these arrangements aren’t necessarily common or publicly announced, exactly how it can help you get ahead can seem like a bit of a mystery.

 

Ultimately, having a mentor can be incredibly beneficial, as long as the relationship is constructed in the proper way. If you are wondering how a mentor can help your career, here’s what you need to know about the role.

 

A Long-Term Relationship

One of the biggest differences between a mentor and a coach is the duration of the relationship. While coaches often make short-term arrangements, a mentor is usually in it for the long haul. The idea is to serve as a guide, supporting your growth and professional development, and acting as a source of insight as you move forward down your career path.

 

The nature of a relationship with a mentor is usually not finite, allowing them to function as a critical connection for months or even years.

 

 

A Source of Encouragement

Often, a person who serves as a mentor is a professional in a position that you would one day like to have. This means that they have usually been in your shoes at some point in their career, so they are capable of both empathizing with the challenges you encounter while also being capable of offering encouragement. After all, they have likely had to tackle the same issues as they were rising through the ranks, and they made it, so they know it is possible to overcome obstacles and reach success.

 

At times, simply having a cheerleader can do wonders for your career. Understanding that someone else has made it through these challenges and is rallying behind you can be both stress-relieving and empowering, allowing you to accomplish more than you previously thought possible.

 

A Sounding Board

While it isn’t a mentor’s responsibility to tell you exactly what to do to reach your goal or give you answers when you encounter difficult questions, they can often serve as a sounding board when you are faced with tough decisions. Again, they have a deeper understanding of the field, so their wisdom can help you work through complicated problems, giving you a chance to make the decision while ensuring you considered all of the key points along the way.

 

In the end, a mentor wants to see you succeed, so they are going to offer their insights and encouragement as a means of supporting you during your journey. If you are interested in learning more about how a mentor can benefit you and your career or are seeking out new opportunities in your field, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to learn more about what we have to offer and to see how our services can benefit you as you work towards your larger career goals.

 

 

Published in Staffing News

 Former Employers

 

Job seekers are often anxious when it comes to having their references checked, with many wondering exactly what a former employer can say about their performance. For example, can a previous employer tell a hiring manager that you were fired? Can them tell them why that decision was made? Are they allowed to discuss the amount of notice you provided when you quit or how many times you were absent?

 

Questions such as those can leave a lot of job seekers worried, even if their overall work history is fairly standard for their field. If you have been wondering what a previous employer can or cannot say about you legally, here’s what you need to know.

 

Federal and State Laws

When it comes to federal regulations, there simply aren’t any. Employers, from a national perspective, have the ability to say whatever they want when they are contacted for a reference.

 

However, many states do have laws that dictate what can or cannot be discussed, though they can vary dramatically from one state to the next. This means you need to review the regulations that pertain to you, and not just based on where you live now, but where your previous employers were located too. If you are planning to relocate for a job, then review the laws in each of the states you are considering as well.

 

 

What Employers are Usually Allowed to Say

As mentioned above, what your former employers can say about you varies from one state to the next. However, there are certain things that are commonly considered legal.

 

Most previous employers can typically disclose if you were terminated from your position, as well as the reason behind that decision. Some states also allow them to talk about your performance, though the feedback may be limited to generalizations.

 

However, even if an employer can discuss specific details about their experience with you, the majority are very cautious when it comes to disclosing various kinds of information. Predominately, their goal is to avoid lawsuits that fall into the defamation category, which includes slander and libel. This means that, unless they are entirely certain that what they are about to say is accurate, they won’t provide the information.

 

Can You Ask Them What Will be Discussed?

Sometimes, the easiest way to find out what might be disclosed is to contact your previous employer’s HR department or a suitable representative and just ask them. In most cases, they will be upfront with you about their policies, so you can determine what they are likely to say during a reference check.

 

Ultimately, if you aren’t sure what they will cover, it is best to assume that they will provide a large amount of detail. This is one of the reasons why you need to always be honest on your application, as failing to be truthful can come back to bite you.

 

If you are looking for a new position, the professionals at The Armada Group can connect you with exciting opportunities throughout the area. Contact us today to learn more about our services, including how they can benefit your career.

 

 

Published in Staffing News
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