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Mark Gilbert
Mark Gilbert
Mark has been involved in EDA recruiting for over 18 years. He is Founder and President of EDA Careers, but started his career in EDA as executive Vice President at EDA Jobs. Mark was also VP of Marketing and Business Development in the beginning of the Internet revolution and has been a … More »

Why is it so Darn Hard to Find Good People in Certain Sectors???…Why is NOW the BEST Time To Look???

December 11th, 2013 by Mark Gilbert

NO question about it…NOW, is THE BEST TIME TO LOOK!  

As the Holiday season fast approaches, it is a mixed time for all of us trying to scramble to get as much done by years end as possible.  Year-end pressures only add to it. At the same time some of you are saying,  “I am ready for a new opportunity and now is the time I should be seeing what is out there”.   (A gold coin to any of you thinking that, because you are correct…Call me for the coin, hopefully you will accept copper).

Right now, is far and away the most perfect time to look, before everyone gets back to full cycles again.  Never change if you’re happy, never change for a little more money, change because you know it is time and you are ready for either a change of project or of team.  You owe it to yourself, to your career, to learn what types of opportunities are available.  You have all to gain and nothing to lose to feel things out and learn if there is something more right for you out there, something that will excite or challenge you more than you are currently.  If there is, you investigate…if it is, right (and only if it is) you can then decide to make the move.  A New Year (or early in the year) is the perfect time to start anew.  Call your favorite recruiter (which should be anyone that wears a white jacket) and have a heart to heart talk.  Everything is always private and sometime (when you talk to a reputable honest recruiter) you just mind find that what you have currently is better than what you might think awaits you.

More and more companies are finding it exceedingly difficult to find the right people to fill their immediate (in some cases) desperate needs.  I dare say, that I cannot remember a time when it was so darn hard to find the right candidate for so many different types of positions.  A woman whom I deeply respect, who runs hiring and more for a very established EDA COMPANY asked me an interesting question. She said, “Mark, you seem to be the industry expert in hiring for EDA”, (As you can see, she is a very intuitive and perceptive women)…”why does it take so long to find good quality people these days?”  The answer is not as simple as theorizing that there are not enough candidates…rather, it lies in the changes we have seen in EDA over the past few years.

The economic crash that we experienced a few years back had some dire consequences that we are still living with today.  In this shaking things out timeframe, it served to wake up few of the bigger EDA company’s, most specifically but certainly not exclusively, Cadence. Cadence has a long history of revolving door managerial practices and group leaders changed faster there than Lindsay Lohan’s rehab programs.  While far from perfect, Cadence has made a few changes that have slowed that practice somewhat over the past few years.  The ICHAN rumored takeover situation concerned many who wondered if Mentor would soon be selling Chryslers.  Synopsys decided to make love to Magma and ended up marrying them in a “if you can’t beat them marry them situation…the result… the majors all stabilized and fewer employees were inclined to seek new opportunities elsewhere…why leave the Mother Ship for a ride on a Class 2 Starship?  (Give me a Class 2 any day or better yet, a Destroyer).

Add this to the fact that most companies (not necessarily your run of the mill P&R or say Verification type companies) are working in new areas going where no man (or women) has gone before (just Klingons).  In this quest to search out strange new…technologies, the skill sets needed have become increasingly more exacting.  The result…they’re simply not a plethora of candidates to do these exacting requirements, hence it is search and search, and hope you find some “good enough engineers” to take on the project.  After all, there is work to be done and somebody needs to do it.

Recently, a company that I have worked with extensively, charged their hiring manager whom I had a great relationship and deeply respected.  The new hiring manager however, took the job description and recast it.  He opened it up just enough to bring in a new flock of possible candidates in hopes of finding people close enough to fill the need.  The concept was, why wait for the perfect candidate when everyone needs some training.  Rather than wait, let’s take the close ones, spend a little more time and teach them.  Rather than wait, they are doing something…not settling, not taking anyone, but finding candidates close enough who have the desire and intelligence to learn.    Therein lies perhaps not the only answer but certainly one of the better solutions to speeding up the process.  Simply stated, the answer is, find smart people with experience close enough to your domain and take the time to train them.  That solution makes more sense than waiting months and months and even more months hoping to find someone, only to learn in the end, they will need training anyway.

Happy Holidays to all my wonderful friends and associates in and around EDA and I wish you all you wish for yourself.

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