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What You Need to Do to Stand Out as an IT Project Manager

 

If you have your eye on an IT project manager position, you know you need to stand out from other candidates. Often, every job seeker who is invited in for an interview has a similar amount of experience and comparable skill set. As a result, you can’t rely on those alone if you want to make a stellar impression on the hiring manager and land the job.

Luckily, there are things you can do to differentiate yourself from the pack. If you want to stand out as an IT project manager candidate, here are some tips that can help.

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.

 

 

Python Skills

 

When it comes to in-demand IT skills, Python is currently on a high. The programming language plays a substantial role in data science and data analytics as well as back-end web application development.

 

Based on the number of positions that require Python, and that demand is expected to rise, learning this language can help tech professionals secure more lucrative opportunities.

 

Some job seekers may be surprised at how many kinds of list Python as a requirement or preferred skill. If you are wondering whether learning Python can boost your chances of finding a great job, here’s what you need to know.

 

10 Jobs Python Skills Can Help You Land

While the top 10 jobs that favor candidates with Python skills are largely in the IT realm, there is a reasonable amount of diversity when it comes to potential opportunities. Here are 10 jobs where Python might be featured in the vacancy announcement:

 

  1. Software Developer
  2. Software Engineer
  3. Research Assistant
  4. Senior Software Engineer
  5. Software Engineering Internship
  6. Web Developer
  7. Graduate Research Assistant
  8. Quality Assurance Engineer
  9. Researcher
  10. Developer

 

Positions in the software development or engineering arenas aren’t necessarily a surprise, but some job seekers may be startled when they see that even internships may require Python.

 

Additionally, certain research-oriented jobs benefit from Python skills as well, particularly when custom software is needed to handle the associated projects.

 

 

How to Learn Python

If you decide that you want to add Python as a skill, you do have options for learning this programming language. First and foremost, traditional education is always an option. In some cases, Python will be featured as part of a larger degree plan, either as a requirement or optional course. However, you don’t necessarily have to be pursuing a degree to take a single class focused solely on Python, particularly if you are open to online learning.

 

You may be able to find a boot camp that either concentrates on Python or features it along with a variety of other languages. If you choose to go the boot camp route, make sure the company offering the boot camp is reputable and that you have the time necessary to complete the entire course.

 

For those who are already comfortable with programming languages in general, teaching yourself Python is also an option. There is a variety of resources, both online and off, and communities that can help you learn the language and improve your skills.

 

Ultimately, adding Python to your repertoire can be a smart move, particularly if you want to land one of the 10 jobs listed above. It can take a little time to learn, but is well worth the effort if you wish to pursue a career in any of the tech-oriented areas contained in the list.

 

If you are interested in learning more or are seeking new opportunities, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our knowledgeable team members today and see how our experience can benefit you.

 

 

Published in Staffing News

Hadoop 

 

Pursuing a career as a software architect can be incredibly lucrative. In the San Jose area, those with the proper skills can make an average salary of over $140,000, well above the national average.

 

But, this means you need to have an appropriate level of technical prowess, and certain skills are more likely to help you stand out from the potential sea of applicants. If you are wondering which skills employers want to find in software architects, here’s what you need to know.

 

C++ and Java

While many programming languages may be requested by employers, C++ and Java are two languages that are commonly listed on software architect job postings.

 

Java is often prized for its versatility as well as its role in emerging technologies, like machine learning and artificial intelligence. Additionally, it can be applied to multiple environments, which is ideal for multi-platform organizations.

 

C++ is usually considered a general-purpose programming language and is widely used across multiple industries. It works well for application and server-side development, making it a must-have in the eyes of many companies.

 

 

Hadoop

Apache Hadoop plays a substantial role in big data-oriented objectives, so software architects that are familiar with this open-source software framework are in high demand. Hadoop can be seen as critical when data that needs to be analyzed is located on multiple servers, so being able to support these projects is a great way to stand out from the competition.

 

Agile

Many organizations favor the Agile methodology for software development. If a business already uses the approach, then being familiar with Agile will be seen as a necessity.

 

Since Agile has been a go-to methodology for some time, many experienced software architects will already have this knowledge. For those just breaking into the field, learning the fundamentals of Agile can be beneficial, as not everyone in entry-level roles will have this experience.

 

Soft Skills

Gone are the days where a person’s technical ability was the only thing hiring managers focused on. Now, soft skills are seen as vital to a software architect’s success, so they are becoming more prominent on job postings.

 

Usually, leadership and organizational skills are a high priority, especially for upper-level of senior positions. Communication skills are also a must, as software architects aren’t just tasked with working as part of a team but also partnering with stakeholders who may not be as technically savvy. This means being able to gather information and communicate complex details in a way that is easily understood by those not working in the software architecture field is a must.

 

There is a range of opportunities for software architects, but possessing the skills above puts you in the best position when it comes to furthering your career.

 

If you are looking for a new software architect position, the professionals at The Armada Group can connect you with top employers throughout the area. Contact us today to see how our services can help you take the next step in your career.

 

 

Published in Staffing News

Generation Z

 

Generation Z currently makes up the largest portion of the population across the world, and the oldest members of this group have just recently started to enter the workforce. Like Millennials before them, Gen Z represents a significant shift in how they must be recruited, as they have their own sets of priorities and experiences.

 

While many companies are aware of Gen Z, few have crafted strategies designed to attract these potential employees. With that in mind, here are some tips for recruiting members of Generation Z.

 

Look Beyond Job Boards

Gen Z understands just how much information is available online, and that knowledge actually has them turning away from traditional online searches when they are hoping to find a new position. Instead, these new professionals favor referral-based processes, so hiring managers will need to do more than just post a vacancy online if they hope to garner attention.

 

The easiest way to start is to institute referral programs at work, creating mechanisms and incentives that get your current employees involved in recruiting. This allows you to access your staff’s network and connect with Gen Z prospects with greater ease.

 

 

Abandon the Cold Call

Typically, a member of Gen Z isn’t going to answer a phone call from a number they don’t recognize and may be hesitant to return a call based on information in a voicemail if contact wasn’t solicited. That means cold calling isn’t going to be ideal for recruiting prospects in this generation.

 

However, online or text-based communications, including reaching out over social media, may be effective, as long as you respond quickly. Gen Z is used to gathering information almost instantaneously, so a slow reply may lead to the conversation dying, and then moving on to a more responsive competitor.

 

If you haven’t made your application process mobile-friendly, then now is the time to get those updates in place. Gen Z is used to having access to information over smartphones, so mobile processes will be more enticing than those that require a computer to complete.

 

Offer What Matters

Each generation has their own priorities when it comes to benefits and perks, and Gen Z is no different. This group is particularly well-connected with their peers, thanks to social media, so they may have more competitive tendencies, making things like job titles more relevant to them. Additionally, work perks, such as travel opportunities, and a photograph-worthy workspace could also be enticing.

 

However, like Millennials, Gen Z also appreciates a clear path for advancement, so having benefits like mentorship programs, company-provided training, and obvious career ladders can attract positive attention from job seekers.

 

Since Gen Z is new to the workforce, there is still a lot to learn about what interests them, so make sure your company remains flexible with its approach, allowing you to adjust as more information becomes known.

 

If you are working to fill a vacancy, the professionals at The Armada Group can connect you with top talent throughout the area. Contact us today to see how our services can help you find the skilled workers you need to succeed.

 

 

Published in Recruiting

Culture

 

The need for a strong corporate culture has gained more attention over recent years, especially as competition for skilled IT workers continues to become fiercer. But a company’s culture isn’t just there to benefit the employees; it can help the business too. A culture of productivity can contribute to improving morale, increase efficiency and enable teams to be more effective. If you want to design a culture that supports these goals, here are four ways to get started.

 

Provide a Sense of Safety

No one is at their best if they feel threatened. Fear and anxiety can negatively impact a person’s ability to solve problems and think creatively, lowering overall productivity and harming the quality of any outputs. Creating an environment that provides employees with the physical and psychological safety they require ensures everyone can be at their best.

 

While physical safety is obvious, making it easier to manage, psychological safety is less clear. However, focusing on organizational transparency, respect and trust goes a long way.

 

Demonstrate Care for Your Workers

When leadership cares about how their employees are doing, it creates an environment based on trust and loyalty while also improving engagement. Often, this means creating programs designed to support the needs of workers including opportunities for growth and advancement, and creating a workplace that focuses on inclusion and acceptance.

 

It’s also important to create an environment that utilizes a team-like atmosphere. Typically, this means making sure management doesn’t distance themselves too far from regular employees and instead fosters a sense that everyone is in this together.

 

Team Building

When team members have strong, healthy working relationships, they are more likely to collaborate effectively. Additionally, having friends at work can reduce turnover and improve the level of job satisfaction they experience. All of these points can increase engagement and enhance productivity, as happy employees are often more effective and efficient in the workplace.

 

In some cases, team members will connect naturally. However, introducing team-building activities can help foster relationships that may otherwise take more time to develop, allowing everyone to work better together more quickly.

 

Supporting Innovation

When workers feel they can take risks and cultivate new ideas, it can create a culture in which innovation thrives. Enabling employees to explore new approaches and ensuring they have suitable support from management can encourage them to think outside the box, potentially developing new systems, solutions or products that can increase productivity or even profitability.

 

To get the ball rolling in this area, your company may wish to offer training on best practices associated with innovative thinking, and the creation of processes designed to make sure ideas can be thoroughly examined and implemented when appropriate.

 

If you’re interested in finding out more about creating a workplace with a culture of productivity or are looking for a new employee to join your team, the professionals at The Armada Group have the expertise you need to succeed. Contact us to discuss your needs today and see how our customized approach to staffing can work for you.

 

 

Published in Hiring Managers

Fears

 

Fear is designed to keep us safe; it helps keep us aware of physical and emotional dangers, allowing us to take action to stay safe. But too much fear can cause trouble, especially when the situation causing the feelings of anxiety aren’t as severe as we perceive them to be. And, when those feelings affect our jobs, it can actually halt career progress in its track.

 

To help you overcome fears that are holding your career back, here are two of the most common ones and what you can do to overcome them.

Fear of Rejection

People aren’t solitary creatures; we often crave the support of a group who accepts us. But finding a new job opens us up to fears of rejection, as we don’t know whether our new co-workers will accept us into the group once we start a new position. However, there are ways to make transitioning into a new team easier, increasing the chance you’ll be seen as an asset instead of an outsider.

 

Take the time to listen to those working around you. Many people start a position and want to share their ideas with their new co-workers. But, it is often better to hear their perspectives first and to learn why current processes are the way they are. By taking this approach, you are showing respect for the current standard, and you get a chance to really see what makes the place tick.

Fear of Failure

A fear of failure can stop us from trying anything new, including finding a new position that might be a better fit. Often, it leads us to procrastinate, or even give up on our goals, as it seems like a better option than having a less than favorable outcome.

 

In most cases, our fear of failure has us believing that the results could be catastrophic, even if that isn’t actually the likely result. To get beyond these concerns, examine the situation objectively and consider the likelihood that, even if it doesn’t go well, the worst case scenario is actually going to happen and if it is actually that bad.

 

Often, when it comes to a job search, the worst outcome is being passed over for a position. While this can be upsetting, it doesn’t generally do much harm. And, when compared to the benefits of scoring that new job, it can seem like a risk worth taking.

 

While trying to land a new job can be scary, our fears regarding the situation are often unfounded. Instead of focusing on the potential negatives, try and keep the benefits in mind. Finding the right job can be invigorating for your career and you personally. Before you decide to step away from your goals, see if what you could gain doesn’t make it seem worth it in your eyes.

 

If you would like help during your job search, the recruiters at The Armada Group can support you through the process. Contact us today and see if the right job for you is just around the corner.

 

Published in Recruiting

Pay Transparency

 

Today’s highly competitive hiring atmosphere is taking an issue that was once only discussed in hushed tones behind closed doors and thrusting it into the proverbial spotlight: Pay. Low unemployment amongst tech professionals and a high level of competition to access and retain top talent has led many organizations to re-examine their policies regarding salaries and compensation, even to the point of increased transparency.

 

But can increased pay transparency improve tech retention? Many say yes, and here’s why.

Improved Trust

It’s no surprise that increased trust between leadership and their employees improve retention, but issues of pay are not traditionally discussed. This leaves many workers wondering if they are being paid fairly when compared to their professional counterparts, and a lack of communication in the area can make these basic concerns become serious problems.

 

By being open to conversations about pay, and even starting them on a regular basis, employees are more likely to feel valued. Additionally, by removing the stigma associated with talking about salary, companies can increase the amount of trust employees have in their practices.

Stronger Strategy

Companies that aim to be transparent about pay often have strong strategies in place regarding pay standards and the evaluation of compensation over time. That means these businesses are evaluating the current market to see what competitors are offering employees with similar skills and are prepared to adjust accordingly. This reverses the tradition of only having salary discussions at key points within the employee’s career, such as when they are initially hired and at annual reviews.

 

Since salary is given a prominent place within larger retention discussions, companies are prepared to be proactive when the need arises. Instead of having top talent begin looking elsewhere for higher compensation, the business can step in when a disparity is noticed. When an organization takes a position of maintaining an open dialogue, it is easier to demonstrate that workers are being paid well for their skills, and to make corrections when it becomes obvious the company is missing the mark.

 

While this requires market analysis to be completed with a high level of frequency, the effort means greater retention. And that ultimately reflects well on the bottom line.

Pay Isn’t a Secret

While most employees aren’t openly discussing compensation with their co-workers on a daily basis, there is still a conversation taking place. Internet-based employment resources have taken pay out of the shadows and somewhat into the light. Now, when an employee wonders whether they are fairly compensated, a little research on their part can yield results quickly. This means that workers aren’t mystified when it comes to what their skills can get them.

 

Since information on salary is so widely available, failing to be transparent means your company doesn’t have the opportunity to participate in the conversation that is happening elsewhere. And, when it appears a business is holding something back, it rarely reflects well on them.

 

If you would like more information about pay transparency or are interested in finding candidates by offering competitive compensation, The Armada Group has the industry information you need to make both possible. Contact us to discuss your goals today and see how our services can help take the issue of pay out of the darkness and into the light.

 

Published in Hiring Managers

Resume

 

It wasn’t that long ago that the recommendation to use bullet points on your resume became commonplace. The approach was considered a strong alternative to giant blocks of text, a method that was often more difficult to read and generally unappealing. However, the use of bullet points shifted from helping provide a level of clarity in key sections to the go-to style for almost every portion of the resume.

 

The higher amount of use isn’t a fatal flaw in itself. However, the way bullet points are used can cause problems. To help you understand why you should bypass the bullet point approach in some cases, here is an overview of the trouble they can cause and how to produce a better resume.

Unintelligible Data Dumps

Bullet points began as an exercise in brevity, helping professionals keep things simple and clear. Over time, many began using them for every aspect of their resume. This leads to a series of factoids being listed about your experience without any depth.

 

Often, there is little if any context for these short statements and explanations are essentially nonexistent. Instead, candidates assume hiring managers will fill in the blanks themselves, even though that typically isn’t the case. These resumes don’t produce a clear picture as to why you are an ideal fit for the position and can lead to being passed over instead.

Creating Context

To make bullet points work for you, they need to be combined with greater context. First, make sure to include a summary section near the top of your resume. This highlights key points of interested customized to the position to which you are applying and serves as an introduction. Then, make sure to include explanations on a regular basis. This can include quick overviews of each position before adding bullet points as support or highlight key skill areas and how specific experiences support your knowledge.

 

The idea is to use a combination approach of short paragraphs supported by additional points. This ensures you create a whole picture of how your career unfolded and why the hiring manager should be interested in the bullet points that follow. It also makes your resume more interesting visually as it provides some variation in the structure. When used properly, you can even design the document to drawn the eye from one section to the next, leading them along through the story of your professional life.

Making Adjustments

A resume is a living document; it is always in a growth period and will almost never be completely perfect. As you apply to jobs and schedule interviews, use any feedback that is provided to create a stronger document. Ultimately, a resume is a first impression. You should take every opportunity to ensure it is the best one you can possibly make.

 

If you are interested in a new position in your field, The Armada Group can help you find new options in your area. Contact us to begin exploring the opportunities available today.

 

Published in Staffing News

how to take on your next

For programmers, machines are often easier to deal with than people. They don't have personal quirks, they do what you tell them to do, and they don't talk back. For introverted personalities, technical jobs can mean minimizing interactions with difficult people.

It isn't possible to avoid people entirely, even in tech jobs. The ultimate users of every application are people, after all; even embedded systems hidden inside a manufacturing machine need to serve the goals of the company – the people – that own the application. This means technical workers need to deal with people, whether to understand the application's requirements or help them provide support when there are problems.

If you're a techie who hates to look up from your computer, here are three ways to develop skills that let you work well with customers.

Become less introverted.

Put yourself in positions where you need to interact with people. Sticking to technical interactions can help boost your confidence. You can also start online, by participating in forums. Then move on to real-world environments like a tech meet-up. Force yourself to talk to at least one person. These activities can make dealing with other people less intimidating.

Improve your interpersonal skills.

Along with reducing your fear of interacting with people, you need to build skills to make the interactions effective. You can take classes in presentation and communication skills; it's also important to boost your listening skills. Understanding customers' issues by listening to them is the first step in being able to resolve their concerns.

Develop empathy.

As well as being able to listen and speak with customers, really interacting well requires having the empathy to understand their points of view. Acting classes are a great way to experience another person's perspective.

Whether you're ready for a position that requires dealing with customers every day, or just want to keep your head down and write code, The Armada Group's jobs database has jobs that match your skills and interests. Take a look at the available positions and then contact us to start working with great recruiters who'll help you find a job that challenges and rewards you every day.

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