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Talent42 2014 - Boris Chan - Competing and Winning Against Big Brands

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Talent42 2014 - Boris Chan - Competing and Winning Against Big Brands

  1. 1. COMPETING AND WINNING AGAINST BIG BRANDS Boris Chan, Associate Director, Toronto
  2. 2. TRANSFORMING HOW THE WORLD MAKES SOFTWARE
  3. 3. FROM XTREME TO PIVOTAL •  Xtreme Labs: •  Built recruiting machine that competes with the likes Zygna, Amazon, Google, Facebook •  We got acquired (Pivotal) •  Pivotal Labs: •  Big recruiting hubs – SF and Toronto. •  Large offices are NY and SF (HQ) – Toronto is biggest. •  Now helping spread the religion to other companies. PEOPLE PROJECTS
  4. 4. @BORISC •  Engineer #2 to Director of Engineering at Xtreme Labs •  6 (2008) to 200+ (2013) •  Then: Recruiting, Interviewing, Onboarding, Hiring, Building teams •  Now: Growing engineering practice at Pivotal Labs Toronto
  5. 5. THE XTREME WAY: -  ALWAYS BE HIRING -  START WITH INTERNS -  MEANINGFUL WORK AND PLAY ATTRACTING TALENT
  6. 6. ALWAYS BE HIRING How do we get to talk to tech talent? •  Always have a posting – you never know who’s going to apply, who’s available •  Referral program, LinkedIn, Stack Overflow, Alumni sites •  Virtual Bench – keep in touch for when there’s an opening Hiring is not a ‘mode’ – can you be always on?
  7. 7. ALWAYS BE HIRING Every opportunity is a recruiting opportunity: •  Go to meetups, hackathons, community events. •  interesting@ / events@ •  Speak at events. •  I’d walk up to the front and write on the whiteboard: "always looking for smart people” •  Only give t-shirts out to those who have worked here: •  People want them – but only get one if have worked here.
  8. 8. VIRTUAL BENCH •  Always interviewing and keeping a pipeline of hires (means always have candidates in later stages) •  Keep in touch for when there’s an opening •  This will also let you get folks who want to work with you, but need time
  9. 9. START WITH INTERNS
  10. 10. WHY DOES IT MATTER?
  11. 11. INTERNS •  Can hire 65+ interns a term from Waterloo in the first round •  Get more resumes than Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter, Apple, Square, Yelp, Foursquare, etc. •  High return and conversion rates •  Can give job offers to interns up to two years in advance of graduation (and they show up!)
  12. 12. HOW TO GET THEM •  Conferences •  Career Fairs •  Info Sessions •  Have a clear purpose + move fast •  Forget T-shirts: = 1000 resumes +
  13. 13. GREAT WITH INTERNS •  Pairing •  There are no intern jobs! •  Give FT offers when you like them (not when they graduate) •  Builds your college hiring pipeline
  14. 14. MEANINGFUL WORK AND PLAY
  15. 15. A DAY IN THE LIFE
  16. 16. FIRST, WE FEED Because code won’t be written on an empty stomach. But really it’s about the social context and aligning the day.
  17. 17. THEN WE STAND
  18. 18. AND STAND AGAIN
  19. 19. Pivotal Labs ConfidentialPivotal Labs Confidential 19 AND THEN PAIR
  20. 20. WE TAKE OUR BREAKS
  21. 21. AND REPLENISH AT 6PM
  22. 22. COMMON HOURS –  8:45 Breakfast –  9:05 All Hands Standup –  9:15 Team Standups –  Lunch noon-ish –  Done around 6pm (and people go play sports! Socialize! Do fun things! Recharge!)
  23. 23. IT’S ABOUT SUSTAINABILITY –  Consistent, predictable delivery is at a premium –  Tired developers leave bugs –  Tired developers leave –  Short-term bursts of productivity cost more in the long term We want engineers who value long-term success, the impact of teaching others and care about a sustainable fast pace.
  24. 24. MEANINGFUL WORK Frame what makes working for you amazing and motivating (Daniel Pink): •  Mastery •  Learn from the best by working with the smartest (Pairing, constant collaboration) •  Autonomy •  Small teams, working directly with clients, no micro- managing •  Purpose •  Deliver an amazing experience for the world’s leading companies, used by millions
  25. 25. RETHINKING ATTRACTING TALENT –  If you’re always hiring, you’ll find them before you need them and you’ll have a virtual bench of candidates waiting to align opportunities with you –  By building great pipeline of interns and college hires, you’ll get an amazing alumni network for pursuing industry hires –  Small companies can offer an alternative path to a high impact and a successful career for engineers through a different approach on meaningful work and play
  26. 26. THE XTREME WAY: -  EVERYONE IS A RECRUITER -  INTERVIEWS ARE HORRIBLE PREDICTORS OF PERFORMANCE -  MOVE FAST AND CLOSE THINGS HIRING TALENT
  27. 27. EVERYONE IS A RECRUITER Your employees are your best recruiters. They can speak candidly, passionately about your company with authenticity. Who? (Everyone!) •  Engineers •  Designers, PMs •  Sales Reps •  HR/Operations/Facilities/IT •  Alumni!
  28. 28. INTERVIEWS ARE MUTUAL Interviews are often mutual: •  Invite candidates to ask your interviewers about their working experience •  How new employees get on- boarded •  What work do new hires start with? Train your staff to speak about the above during: •  Recruiting events •  Speaking opportunities •  All stages of recruiting: referrals, interviews, closing
  29. 29. INTERVIEWS ARE HORRIBLE PREDICTORS OF PERFORMANCE
  30. 30. INTERVIEWS ARE HORRIBLE PREDICTORS OF PERFORMANCE. •  No good proxy for actual performance •  Past performance does not guarantee future performance •  Hiring for current fit vs. hiring for potential •  Ability to learn on the job and adapt to organization’s process and cultures
  31. 31. PROCESS – IT’S ALL ABOUT FIT Would you hire an actor without an audition? Engineers: •  Repeatable Pairing Interview •  Actual Pairing •  At XL: Written test, Top Coder on whiteboard, hiring decision round Designers: •  Portfolio review •  Interview and design challenge Sales: •  They pitch us •  Meet separately with each level, and finally with VP Sales
  32. 32. INTERVIEWS ARE HORRIBLE PREDICTORS OF PERFORMANCE. How do you sustain "hire fast"? Finding fit is continuous: 30 / 60 / 90 Day check-ins We’ll give someone an offer before they leave interview days. Same day.
  33. 33. MOVE FAST AND CLOSE THINGS
  34. 34. MOVE FAST AND CLOSE THINGS How do you win candidates? -  Heard of your company through the recruiting channels -  Get that they can have impact through meaningful work and culture -  Interviews where they learn about their role from people who are doing it -  What’s next?
  35. 35. THE CLOSE PROCESS How the same day process looks: •  Written Test •  First round: Top Coder on whiteboard •  Second round: hiring decision round •  Offer meeting •  Follow-up Email/Call to Close Train your recruiting team to schedule for next round as needed, on the spot.
  36. 36. THE PACKAGE Compete on your strengths. Compensation is only a part. We offer: •  Free meals and snacks •  Great machines + fast internet •  Prime downtown location •  Mentoring and demos •  Events + socials •  Sense of purpose •  Netflix + Apple TV •  Medical and dental •  Retirement plan contribution •  Stock purchase plan •  Stock options Interns Full times (perks start from sign date, not start date)
  37. 37. RESULTS FOR RECRUITING How do you win candidates? •  Hire fast means we signal we work the same way. (no red tape) •  People leave Amazon, Google, Facebook and Microsoft to work for us •  “Better interview process than Amazon” - Jon Ji
  38. 38. DOES IT WORK? 0 50 100 150 200 250 300 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Xtreme FTE Headcount QA PM Ops Marketing Legal IT HR Design Engineering Exec BD
  39. 39. THE XTREME WAY: -  ALWAYS BE HIRING -  START WITH INTERNS -  MEANINGFUL WORK AND PLAY ATTRACTING TALENT
  40. 40. THE XTREME WAY: -  EVERYONE IS A RECRUITER -  INTERVIEWS ARE HORRIBLE PREDICTORS OF PERFORMANCE -  MOVE FAST AND CLOSE THINGS HIRING TALENT
  41. 41. Boris Chan Associate Director, Toronto boris@pivotallabs.com @borisc www.pivotallabs.com Let’s Connect!

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