In Silicon Valley and other U.S. tech hubs these days, the hiring scene seems to be a tale of two cities. On the one hand, 50 large technology companies including Apple and Google have increased their headcounts by at least 50% over the last two years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. On the other hand, that's little consolation to the 1,300 Cisco employees who were laid off last year or the 4,600 semiconductor workers who have lost their jobs since 2008, according to the Bay Citizen.
Despite a tech boom that is seeing companies like eBay expand operations beyond California to find talent, and other companies hiring liberal arts majors for IT roles, many older IT workers have found themselves out of work and their skill sets deemed undesirable. Tech recruiters say that they're seeking employees who are entrepreneurial and want to "change the world."
But some IT professionals say that those requirements are just code for wanting candidates in their 20s and early 30s. One professor tells the Bay Citizen that workers over the age of 35 often face age discrimination at tech companies; a survey of 251 tech companies found that being over 40 years old was considered a barrier to working in the growing areas of social media, cloud computing and mobile apps.
Related: How to Keep Your Tech Job in 2012
You'd think that Twitter, one of the hottest tech companies in the world, wouldn't have to reduce itself to cheeky recruitment videos. Let us know if this three-minute spiel extolling the benefits of free Twitter t-shirts, kegs of beer and having Lady Gaga on speed dial gets you to submit a resume.
Publishing Jobs (FINS)
Burlington, Mass.-based Acquia will hire 120 new employees this year as it expands its content management support business. Founded in January of 2008, the company currently has 170 employees.
Ivy League Green (AllThingsD)
It's been said that the smartest thing a wannabe tech entrepreneur can do is drop out of Harvard like billionaires Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg. That's why the Cambridge, Mass., university has started an incubator fund that will award up to $500,000 for four to six start-ups in hopes of keeping its brightest minds from departing for the West Coast.
The agreement between tech companies to not poach each other's employees may have cost one Google recruiter his job. After Steve Jobs personally emailed Google Chief Executive Eric Schmidt to ask him to cease his company's contact with an Apple engineer, Google's staffing director wrote that the responsible person would "be terminated within the hour."
Staying Alive (NYT)
Barnes & Noble Chief Executive William Lynch is in the midst of turning his 140-year-old bookstore empire into a technology company. But even with a Silicon Valley outpost filled with 300 engineers, it's an open question of whether the company can save itself.
IPO Boon (WSJ)
It's probably time to start networking with any past or present Facebook employees that you know. The company's pending IPO will make many a technologist rich -- and ripe for backing the next start-up.
Cold Reality (Bits)
Technology was a hot topic of discussion at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Google's Eric Schmidt said that technological advancement "endangers jobs that are routine and automatable."
Dream Come True (WhiteHouse.gov)
Check out this video of Instagram co-founder Mike Krieger chatting up First Lady Michelle Obama before her husband's big speech last week. Krieger, originally of Brazil, even got a plug for his photo sharing app.
Buzz Around the Office
Somebody send this kid to the Mets!
List of the Day: What You May Be Ignoring In Your Follow Up
Don't forget the little things that often get overlooked.
1. Do it soon.
2. Reiterate your qualifications.
3. Ditch the keyboard and write a letter.