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A Candidate Feedback for Keeping Organized

January 31st, 2012

With an aggressive job market for software engineers and other technologist, it’s easy for a candidate to confuse interviews, companies, and jobs. Here’s a series of questions we ask our candidates after completing interviews. We think you’ll find it a helpful tool to keep organized and better manage your transition to a new role.

Immediate questions to answer after the interview:

  1. What was your first impression of the interview and how did it go?
  2. How did you do in the interview?
  3. How long were you there?
  4. Who did you meet? (Names and Title)
  5. What did you talk with those people about?  What questions did they ask you?
  6. How did you handle the questions?
  7. How did they describe the job to you?
  8. What questions did you ask them?
  9. What technical questions did they ask you specifically and who asked you those questions?
  10. How did you leave things off when you left?
  11. What do you think of the job, people, company, and technology?
  12. If they are interested in bringing you back for another interview, would you be interested in going back for another interview?
  13. What questions do you still have about the job, the company, the team, the technology, the future?
  14. Do you want the job? What did you like specially about the position?



  • Keep a list or spreadsheet of all your activity. Activity includes interviews, jobs you’ve applied for directly, people you’ve passed your resume along to, and any other activity relevant to securing your next job. When you get responses from employers or recruiters you’ll be able to see easily trace your steps backward.
  • Past, Present, Future. It’s important also to track companies who have expressed interest in you where you have received some level of response.  Even if you beginning formally tracking midway during your job search it’s important to note:
    • What other positions have you interviewed in the past?
    • What are the interviews you have scheduled?
    • What other companies are you waiting to hear back from?


  • What’s your #1 Job and why?
  • What’s your #2 and why? Etc.
  • How do the new jobs you’re interviewing for compare to your current role or the prospect of staying on the market?
  • Compare – $, Location, Technology, Growth Path, Team, Company, Role


  • How many interviews have you had with each company?
  • What needs to happen to schedule another interview?
  • What needs to happen to make an offer?
  • Do you have your references?
  • Will you pass a background check, drug test, and pre-employment test?
  • Have you spoken to your significant other about your new job opportunities?
  • How would this new job affect your life? (Benefits,  Working Hours, Commute Time and Cost)


  • What is your ideal offer?
  • How are you going to negotiate with the client to get to that number?
  • What is acceptable?
  • What will you definitely turn down?

Posted in Career Tips, Company News, Talener Blog, Talener Culture

Mobile Technology in the Health and Fitness Industry

January 31st, 2012

Recent improvements to technology within the health and fitness industries have resulted in groundbreaking medical advancements, allowed a new breed of athlete to accomplish what was considered to be impossible ten years ago, and improved the daily lives of anyone with access to it. These milestones have also assisted in generating record revenues: the United States’ health and fitness industry was valued at $7 trillion in 2011. Not too surprising considering that 1 in every 3 children in the United States is classified as obese. However, there is a steadily increasing percentage of American’s starting to prioritize their health the same way they stay connected with the world; by using their phones and their associated mobile markets.

 In 2010, mobile applications downloads related to the health fitness industry generated a total of $100 million in revenue. Among these applications was “RunKeeper”, a downloadable application that allows a user to view their running/jogging route, distance, heart rate (with monitor attachment), and other performance gauges, while it’s activated during activity. FitnessKeeper, Inc (the company behind Runkeeper), a Boston based company, recently released plans to open up a new Boston headquarters to accommodate their rapidly growing staff. FitnessKeeper is only one in an industry comprised of thousands of small tech start-ups dedicated exclusively to the engineering of applications such as the wildly popular RunKeeper (identified by TIME in 2009 as one of the top ten iphone apps).

 Analysts predicted the health and fitness mobile application industry to quadruple in growth from 2010 to 2011. However, what analysts did not project is that in 2011 17% of all smart-phone users would download an application related to health and fitness. When 2011 closed, 44 million applications had been downloaded for a total revenue of $718 million. Mobile revenue for 2012 is projected to grow to $1.3 billion; which is a microscopic fraction of the $7 trillion the health and fitness industry generates every year.

 These applications allow mobile users to have valuable, and potentially life-saving, information at their fingertips. One application, called “Cellscope,” allows users to diagnose any surface ailments by simply taking a picture of the affected area and uploading it into the application. The app then diagnosis the injury, informs you of its severity, and provides you with a treatment plan.

The revenue generated from the purchasing of applications, such as RunKeeper and Cellscope, is projected to grow to $1.3 billion in 2012. That figure will only increase in subsequent years as mobile applications become more practical and prevalent in people’s lives. The market growth potential is enormous, and is certainly an industry to keep a close eye on. 

Posted in Current Events, Talener Blog

The Future of Samsung and Recruiting

January 30th, 2012

Recruiters should be so interconnected with their respective fields, that they are able to identify future technologies and the avenues for current clients to take advantage of these emerging technologies. Samsung is in a position to make huge advances in the area of consumer electronics and should be watched closely in the coming months. 

Samsung is already a leader in the consumer appliances, and heavy construction fields. They are the #1 manufacturer of LCD and OLED displays which are used heavily in computers, cell phones, and televisions, and throughout late 2011, Samsung battled Apple to be the #1 producer of smartphones.

In 2012, all new Samsung TVs will be equipped with internet capabilities and be able to connect to other Samsung devices through their proprietary SwipeIt application, which works very similarly to AppleTV. The ability to push content from one Samsung device to another via a WiFi connection enables Samsung to create a top-to-bottom device “ecosystem” that will give current Samsung customers pause when considering buying products from competitors.

With the expansion of their television, smartphone, and tablet lines, Samsung is now coming out with a proprietary operating system named Bada, which will initially power their Wave line of smartphones, and is in development to power televisions and tablets as well. A single operating system to power multiple Samsung platforms will be key for the future development of software, and applications based on this new OS.

To monetize the development of a singular OS and multiple platforms, Samsung has released AdHub which will deliver targeted ads to customers on their SmartTVs. This opens up an entirely new area of development for ad networks, news, and digital agencies, for which to produce content.

Samsung is a leader in consumer technology, and has been making advancements not only in hardware, but now they are making a huge push for developing powerful pieces of software to increase the functionality of their devices. Advances are always being made in technology, but Samsung has an upper hand with powerful R&D programs to develop great software/hardware, and a stellar reputation that will increase the possibility for consumer adoption. The recruiting world needs to take notice of these advancements and begin learning as much as possible so we are prepared to meet the needs of existing clients, and future clients that will be producing content for Samsung powered devices. 

Posted in Current Events, Talener Blog, Talener Culture

Full Interview with CareerBuilder, What IT takes: Jobs in Information Technology

January 30th, 2012

Here was the full list of questions and answers that became the article, What IT takes: Jobs in Information Technology, by Kristyn Schiavone. 


Question 1: What do you consider to be the top three, in terms of job market, salary, etc?

–          1) Object Oriented Java-Script

–          2) Ruby on Rails

–          3) Mobile Development- Android, Objective C, Cocoa

–          Salary ranges: Mid-Level $75,000 to $100,000, Sr. Level $110,000-  $140,000

Question 2: What do companies look for when they’re hiring tech professionals?

–          Proven track record of career development

–          How the candidates got started in technology

–          Outside interests, side projects

Question 3: What is causing the talent shortage in technology, lack of IT Professionals or that there are not enough whose skill sets are up-to-date?

–          Since 2000/2001 College Graduate levels have been cut in half.

–          2007 was the bottom, 12,000 vs, 24,000

–          2012 levels are increasing, but only to 14,000

–          Every industry complains about a lack of quality, not the quantity

Question 4: What makes a good IT professional? How can students or aspiring IT professionals decide which concentration, such as computer support, database administration or software engineering, is right for them?

–          Logical, Math-focused, Problem solver, slightly introverted

–          Software engineering departments are directly interacting with Business Units now, more than ever

–          DBA- the highest paying support type of role

–          Computer Support- a good entry level role

Questions 5: What’s rewarding about a career in IT?  What’s challenging?

–          Rewarding: Cross Industry and Cross Country, Constantly Changing, much more visible career than ever before (Apple Effect), High Paying Career, Adds a lot of value

–          Challenging: knowing that you are at the right company to advance and stay current with technology, to keep up with all of the latest and greatest technology (Staying Current), hours can be long and sporadic

Question 6: Have you seen a recent increase in people entering the field?  So you think the number of tech students and experts to continue to grow?

–      Yes and Yes 

Question 7: Because it’s such a fast-changing field, how can continuing education affect someone’s IT career long-term?

–          A career in technology is not all about the degree, more about the on the job experience and solving real-world problems

–          Technology is a passion and not always a perfect science, lots of moving parts, Server, Client, Hardware, Software, Service Provider, Data, etc.

–          Advanced careers and training are more relevant for MGMT, Leadership and career switches


Active tech candidates vs. Passive tech candidates




Posted in Client News, Current Events, News, Talener Blog, Talener Culture

CareerBuilder/ Chicago Tribune Article: What IT takes: Jobs in Information technology

January 30th, 2012

Talener Group’s own Michael Dsupin continued his media domination by bein heavily quoted/featured in this Chicago Tribune/Career Builder article by Kristyn Schiavone that ran in print and online.

Check it out here:,0,7208981.story

And feel free to share it.  Enjoy!


Posted in Client News, Company News, Current Events, News, Talener Blog, Talener Culture

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