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Hungry for the Holidays

November 2nd, 2015

We are constantly inundated with images of those less fortunate than us.  From homelessness to abused pets, children without access to education or a lack of lifesaving vaccinations- we know that there are many places that our time, money, and effort can go to help those is need.

This November, as we approach the Holiday Season, Talener would like to take some time to support an effort that hits very close to home, but isn’t always at the forefront of our minds.  When we think of hunger, we often overlook a population that needs our help: seniors in our own communities.

Talener has chosen to support the hungry this holiday season.  17.6 million seniors have difficulty paying for basic living needs- including healthy meals.  Many people are unable to leave their homes to shop, cook healthy meals, and meet their needs.  In fact, 14.8 million of them are isolated; living alone.  Many would not be able to stay living in their homes without these services.

One year’s worth of meals delivered to a senior costs less than ONE day spent in a hospital.  Simply, this means that we can make a difference for our parents, grandparents, and even great-grandparents. They can eat well, even when they are unable to go out due to injury, illness, weather, etc.

During the month of November, Talener will donate $50 for every Interview Session (known in our lingo as a ‘Company In’) that takes place in one of Talener’s six offices.  From NYC to Boston, Chicago to Washington DC and all the way out to our offices in San Francisco & Los Angeles, we want to rack up the interviews so that we can give the most amount of money.  If we reach over 100 interview sessions, then we’ll double it- $100 each!

What’s the catch?  There is no catch.  If you are looking to hire great tech talent this month and need to fill your staff roster- then it is a win-win.  You get to meet several pre-screened tech candidates in one interview session, receive immediate feedback from candidates, and decide on-site who will meet you for additional rounds.  By using our office space, we create a neutral environment for the candidates and it allows you to only bring those who you want to interview again, into your office.  There is no obligation to hire.  We will donate the $50 (and hopefully $100!) per interview session whether you hire one of our candidates or not.

This is our way of motivating our staff, bringing awareness to hunger within the senior population, and to give back to the communities that we call home.

If you would like to discuss a tech job that you would like to fill, contact one of our office directors (below) and they will be happy provide market & candidate trends, as well as the benefits to conducing first round interviews in our offices.

Thank you and we wish you a happy beginning to your holiday season!

  • New York City- Kimberly Siembieda:
  • Boston- Rob Laughlin:
  • Chicago- Chris Fanning:
  • San Francisco- Dillon Johnston:
  • Los Angeles- Austin Douglas:
  • Washington DC Metro- Justin Cottrell:

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Posted in Talener Blog

First Impressions Last

May 20th, 2015

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We all know that the cover of a book never tells the whole story; but on the job hunt- first impressions last.  Recruiters and hiring managers want to get past the title page and uncover your story. And in technology staffing, these impressions are vital as the market moves at light speed, languages & software are constantly updating, and companies demand more than just technical skills.  Some of our top recruiters sat down and talked about what makes a good first impression and what immediately turns them off.

KThumbs Up Greenim: I’m most impressed with someone who is passionate about what they do. If you are truly passionate about your job, you go above and beyond. A hiring manager once told me, “if you tell me you are open to learning a technology, but you don’t do anything on your own to learn, it’s like telling me you want to lose weight, but you’ve never been on a treadmill.”

Thumbs Up GreenMike: In the tech industry, there is a misconception that coders & developers are buried in a back corner, headphones in their ears, hunched over a keyboard. This just isn’t the case. Communication skills and personality are becoming more and more critical to our clients.  Effective communication is always a great way to get my attention.

Thumbs Up & Down Red_GreenMarina: Confidence. I guess this can be both impressive and a turn off. You need to believe in yourself, your skills, and your ability to land a job.  But, there is a fine line between confidence and an inflated ego.

Thumbs Down RedOlivia: Leave your ego at the door! We know that you have some of the top tech skills in the country but we have a lot of experience working through the hiring process for your specific skills set.  Plus, we have insight about how certain hiring managers conduct their interviews or how do you get you more money! My goal is to help!

Thumbs Down RedNick: It is frustrating when people immediately shut themselves off to certain industries without even taking the time to research or talk with the company.  It never hurts to network, practice your interview skills, and learn more about an industry that you might not be familiar with.

Thumbs Up GreenRachel: A smile, a handshake, and a put-together appearance (stained clothes happen a lot more often than you think!) go a long way.  But I’m really impressed by someone who can bring in a well-written, easy to follow, 1-2 page resume.  This gives us more time to go beyond the resume and truly get into your needs and wants in a new position.

Thumbs Up GreenNick: I find it really impressive when candidates are able to articulate what they really want. It makes a big difference if you can tell me your ideal type of working environment.  Small team? Collaborative? Work from home? Large organization? Learning opportunities?

Thumbs Down RedMike: Sometimes candidates have had a really bad experience with another recruiting agency and that attitude transfers to me.  I guess it is the classic “one bad apple spoils the bunch” mentality.  But it is really a turn off because my goal is to help you find a job. This is a partnership and the results are mutually beneficial.

Thumbs Up GreenOlivia: I am always on board when a candidate can communicate well.  A candidate who can express what they truly want in a position, helps us to help them.  Communication leads to a relationship, a relationship leads to trust. It is definitely a win-win for everyone.

Thumbs Down RedKim: I’m always turned off when someone thinks their resume is the be-all, end-all. There is so much more to your story and that is one of the reasons we meet with every candidate.  Personality, communication, presentation, and drive are just as important, if not more.

Thumbs Down RedRachel: It sounds cliché, but it happens ALL the time: Don’t be late! Traffic happens; trains are late.  But a quick heads up is always appreciated. If you are late without any explanation, it puts me in a situation where I don’t know if you’ll do the same thing to a hiring manager.

Thumbs Up & Down Red_GreenJustin: Demeanor & presentation: these both impress me and turn me off.  Being put together is more than just how you dress. It is about whether you are prepared, have eliminated outside distractions, and are focused on the the task at hand.  Someone who is well put together, with a clear head, confidence, and goals… has my attention.

Recruiters and hiring managers can screen hundreds of resumes every month.  At Talener, we also meet with all of the candidates we represent in order to build relationships, find the right candidate-client match, and to make sure that we are getting you the best possible package.  Getting to know you is part of opening your story and learning more about you. The hiring process can be daunting at any stage of your career and our goal is to have you put your best foot forward when you do get in front of your potential future boss.

Need more interview tips or want to prepare your resume?  Contact us for expert advice, market trends, or just to talk about potential positions what we have open!

Posted in Career Tips, Talener Blog

Reflecting on the First Eight Years of Talener

April 3rd, 2015

Happy Anniversary, Talener!

Yesterday, Talener celebrated eight years in business. It would be an understatement to say that the time has flown by. They have been filled with wonderful people & memories.

I’d like to take a moment to thank everyone who has made Talener into the company it is today; a well-respected IT staffing firm that works tirelessly to provide exciting opportunities for employees, to deliver top talent to its clients, and to provide incredible jobs to its candidates. So bear with me, as I get a bit nostalgic & reflect on some of the great people and memories. I feel truly blessed to have had the chance to work with so many people over the years. While you may not know every name or story personally, each one has impacted Talener and has built it to what it is today.

Day One:

Talener was born in a 20’x20’, midtown Manhattan conference room, on April 2nd 2007. At the helm- Chris, Ashley and I, took on the IT staffing world. On Day 3, Ashley asked if she could set up a computer collecting dust in the corner. Of course! But, I said, “You have to set all of them up.” I was thrilled—I had no idea how to do it.

Chris placed our very first candidate, Alex, into a quality assurance job. We may have celebrated a bit too much, but it was a milestone. Talener was no longer just a name, we were a fee earning business. And then—it happened again! I placed our second candidate, Rahul, with Patricia at a midtown bank. But it was not without its difficulties- Rahul decided to take another job the night before his interview with our client. After some persuasion, Rahul agreed to go to his interview. Instead of moving to Detroit, he took the contract with the bank stayed for nearly two years!

Our First Hire:

With two deals under our belt, it was time to hire! Pat came to us as a blessing in disguise. He kept Ashley, Chris, and I from killing each other in our tiny cube of an office. Pat started training on his first day and was so overwhelmed by all of the information that I had to take him out for a beer before 3pm. Once that hurdle was cleared, Pat became an integral part of the Talener team and eventually gave all of us nicknames. From the Heronater to Matty Boom Batty, HB Blades to Winstonian, he had a name for everyone. While growing as a company, we also grew as friends. Pat helped out at our son’s birthday (in the sweltering heat) by holding our youngest, Nina, and running back and forth from the car to get cold drinks.

Talener is…

Talener is so many things. We are a community of people who work hard and play hard.  We have a great time with our clients and we would not be here if they hadn’t believed in our abilities.

Talener is sharing success. Greg, a Migration Project Manager Consultant, was hired and then (on the same day) a few years later, we celebrated his promotion to director at the same company.

Talener is about relationships. In 2008, our client, Leslie hired some of our best web producers in New York. From celebrating the successes with Leslie and Mike to Yankee games with Andrew, and wine filled lunches with Betsy—these four clients helped me build what Talener has become today. While you may not know these four people, I will be forever thankful for their support. These relationships are what make Talener great.

Talener is growing. From our early New York City days, we have grown significantly. Curt (Belly Buds) Williams and Rory started our Los Angeles office in 2009 while Tobias & Zen opened San Francisco in 2010. Not to be outdone—Rob, Kim, Ashley & Ben charged into Boston in 2012 and Dan, Ashley, Jacob and David took on chilly Chicago in 2013. And most recently, in January of this year Justin, Margo, Kate & Chris moved to our nation’s capital to break into one of the hottest new tech markets—Washington DC. To all of you, I sincerely hope that you’ve had as much fun as I had starting a new office.


Starting Talener has not been without its struggles. Like any start up, we tripped over printer cords, dealt with dropped calls, internet outages, canceled meetings, and no-show candidates. But those aren’t the memories that stay with me. The memories that stay with me are those that make me proud of my staff for taking a leap of faith to help Talener flourish.

In Closing:

I want to thank all of you, including my current circle of trust- Henry, Tobias, Rory & Chris. It is always a pleasure to have you on the team and work with you every day. Your courage, strength, energy and unwavering belief in Talener allows me to sleep at night. I know we will accomplish our goal of making Talener the best IT staffing firm. I cannot express my sincere appreciation enough. My belief and commitment in you is unwavering. There have been countless other people who have contributed to Talener, and to all of you (you know who you are), please know that you will always be in my thoughts and prayers. Rare a day goes by when you are not remembered. The stories always end with a laugh and a smile.

The past eight years at Talener have been filled with great memories, stories & people. I anxiously await what the next eight years will bring. Oh, the places we will go!


With Sincere Thanks,

Michael Dsupin

CEO, Talener

Posted in Talener Blog

Talener San Francisco- Spotlight: Kelsie Korn

March 24th, 2015

Kkorn What is staffing really like? We asked Kelsie, from our San Francisco office, to give us her insight about sales & recruiting.

What did you think of “staffing” before working at Talener?  — I was familiar with staffing because my parents used to own their own staffing agency for 15 years. I used to hear a LOT of phone conversations, but I had no idea what they were actually doing. Now I think I sound just like my mom.

What did you think of “sales” before working here? — I was terrified of sales. To be honest, I didn’t realize that recruiting (which I had even witnessed my parents doing when I was growing up) was the same thing as sales. I started at Talener and they had told me this was a sales job. I had no idea what I was doing, but I dove in! I never wanted a “sales” job, but I’m really enjoying this.

What do  you think of staffing now? — It’s way more relationship-based than I thought. This job gets easier as you talk with, meet, and in some way connect with people. As long as you’re putting yourself out there and meeting new people every week, you will find new clients and new candidates– matching them is up to you and your organization.

After doing this for a while, what do you think of sales? — Same as staffing,  it’s highly dependent on relationships you have. It’s definitely high-energy and can be stressful, but again, as long as you’re engaging people, whether it be over the phone or in person, you will prosper. We all have bad sales months, but those can teach you lessons that apply to life outside of work as well. For example, I’ve learned that it’s not about your attitude when you’re doing well – it’s how you behave when you’re not doing well that sets you apart.

Has working here changed your opinion about the bad rep that sales & staffing gets? — Yes, one of the best things about working here is that I always have help.  The managers are tuned in and helping us one-on-one all day, so you never feel lost.  The company is full of people that I look up to – the management is really impressive. Plus, everyone at Talener starts in the same position and moves up from there; so they understand all of the different scenarios you could be going through as a junior employee.

Kelsie is a Lead Relationship Manager in our San Francisco office.  She is an expert in placing candidates in the front end space and has extensive knowledge of the current market.  Looking for a front end position in the Bay area or have a position that you need to fill? Contact Kelsie,, to get her expert opinion about market conditions, upcoming hiring trends, or to find out more about staffing.

Posted in Talener Blog, Talener Culture

April 19th, 2015: Chicago Apache Cassandra Event

March 23rd, 2015

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Searching for a free, all-day Cassandra event in the heart of Chicago?  Look no further that the DataStax Cassandra event on Sunday, April 19th.

What: DataStax is holding a FREE, day-long event in Chicago on April 19th about Apache Cassandra, a big data/ NoSQL database used by companies like Apple, Netflix, and The Weather Channel. Check out all of the details below!

Where: Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers- 301 E. North Water Street, Chicago, IL 60611

When: Sunday, April 9th from 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM (CDT)

Why: Cassandra is used by thousands of companies and over 30% of Fortune 100s for its high availability (peer-to-peer & simple active multi-data center), ease of operations, performance & scalability. This is the time to learn about Cassandra.

The Details: Sponsored by Microsoft Azure, HP & Vormetric- this Apache Cassandra event is hosted by DataStax in the heart of Chicago for a full day. Free breakfast, lunch, and parking validation included! This will be a free three-track event on April 9th to get you skilled on Cassandra.

  • Track One: Intro to Cassandra, including hands-on training
  • Track Two: Use cases and advanced tips & tricks
  • Track Three: Half-day management focused track for executives to understand how and why companies are using big data technologies (featuring the Microsoft Azure team & Asurian VP of Enterprise Architecture & Data Services)

Can’t make the entire event? No problem! Check out the schedule and RSVP here.

Have questions about the event or need more information? Contact Lina at DataStax or check out their event website.



Posted in Events, News, Talener Blog

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