Document Actions

ACM CareerNews for Tuesday, March 1, 2011

ACM CareerNews is intended as an objective career news digest for busy IT professionals. Views expressed are not necessarily those of ACM. To send comments, please write to careernews@hq.acm.org

Volume 7, Issue 5, March 1, 2011




Five Reasons Why Your Online Presence Will Replace Your Resume in 10 Years
Forbes.com, February 21

As more recruiters use the Web as a place to search for talent and conduct employment background searches, having a searchable online presence is becoming almost a prerequisite. In fact, more than one-third of companies already feel that resumes will eventually be replaced by profiles on social networks. Your personal website is the core of your online presence and if you optimize it effectively, it will rank number one for your name in major search engines such as Google. Your online presence also should contain profiles on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. By claiming your Web presence, you gain control over how you’re perceived online, and thus what employers find out about you when they conduct their search.

First of all, social networking use is skyrocketing while traditional channels, such as email, are plummeting. Although often perceived as a generational trend, the highest growing demographic on Facebook is 35+, and LinkedIn caters primarily caters to that demographic too. Employers are reviewing your profiles to see what kind of person you are outside of work, to whom you’re connected, and how you present yourself. Each gives clues to how well you can fit into the corporate culture. In order to find a job, you have to be creative, attract jobs to your website, and network constantly. Applying to job postings, in newspapers and online, won’t get you anywhere and are becoming completely ineffective. By building your online presence, employers can find you and thus you have more opportunities.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top


How Should We Educate the Next Generation of Entrepreneurs?
Inc.com, February 22

Educating the next generation of entrepreneurs will take a new approach that emphasizes giving them access to new types of resources, such as mentors for advice. At the Future of Entrepreneurship Education Summit in Orlando, a wide range of entrepreneurs shared their perspectives on what needs to be done to change the educational system. The most prevalent theme was that we should be helping young, aspiring entrepreneurs start businesses, not teaching them how to write business plans. In order to help entrepreneurs launch and grow their companies, educational institutions should re-think the resources available for start-up ventures.

The entrepreneurial event kicked off with a keynote speech by Jeff Hoffman, the founder of Priceline, who described how university officials at Yale helped him grow his start-up company and launch him on his entrepreneurial path. Serial entrepreneur Doug Mellinger declared that the only mission for an entrepreneurship education program is to graduate entrepreneurs. Most programs are too academic, and not practical enough, and these programs appear too late in the educational process. Starting with their first-year students, universities should put the entrepreneur and the student first by making their programs surround them, not their research agendas.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top


Technology Execs Hopeful for Job Creation in 2011
Silicon Republic, February 21

According to the new Eurocom Worldwide Survey, 61% of respondents feel more confident about future prospects for the technology sector, with 57% expecting to increase jobs in 2011. The findings, based on responses from 664 senior executives in technology-based businesses across more than 30 countries worldwide, suggest a possible uptick in job creation for the global technology sector this year. The survey shows a big turnaround in technology market confidence over the last two years. By way of comparison, in early 2009, just 13% of respondents were more confident and almost half were less confident about the year ahead.

In this year’s survey, only 8% of global respondents are less confident about prospects for the next 12 months. 57% of respondents expect the business they work for to increase employment this year, with only 9% expecting to cut jobs, and 34% maintaining current employment levels. 66% believe the global economy is now recovering from recession and 58% believe that recession in their country has ended. However, 37% still believe their country is still in recession. Based on trends in similar data over the past eight years, the results suggest that technology-based business activities are set to recover strongly in the year ahead.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top


Social Media 101: Facebook and Job Hunting
Student Branding Blog, February 24

As social networking sites such as Facebook become an increasingly important part of the job search, candidates should adjust their current approach to Facebook. If you’re job hunting, remember that Facebook is a public place where people can enter your world and see all of the information that you post. Unless you take time to personalize your privacy settings, everyone has free access to your information, posts and photos. By having these types of conversations in public, you should think about posting information that presents you in the best light to potential recruiters, as well as tweaking some settings to create a more professional image.

Presenting yourself as a professional requires you to consider how you use your Facebook page. The most important thing to consider is your Privacy settings. By default, much of your information is set to “Everyone.” However, you can also customize these settings. For example, you can make your status updates viewable only by certain people or certain groups you create within your Friends list. You can also set your photo albums and the Places where you check in to be viewable only by specific groups of people. This way, employers cannot see any unflattering comments you may post or be bombarded with unflattering photos. Many professionals will set their privacy settings so that employers and colleagues can only see some information, while friends and family members can only view other information.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top


Business Cards: Five Smart Tricks
CBS Money Watch, February 23

Your business card should be an extension of your professional image and help to define your personal brand. Yet, business cards are one of the most underutilized career tools people have available to them. Many people don’t ask a new contact for one because they feel presumptuous doing so. Others collect cards, and then dump them into an unorganized desk drawer, making them impossible to use later. Career expert Don Hurzeler, author of the upcoming book The Way Up: How to Keep Your Career Moving in the Right Direction, provides five tips for making sure your business cards, as well as your contact’s cards, are working for you.

Your business card is an instant way to convey your brand to someone you’ve just met. Fortunately, they are really inexpensive to have printed professionally. Start with good heavy card stock, make sure there isn’t any odd advertising on the back - and check that your design elements will scan easily. There’s no need to be stingy with your cards, but do avoid aggressively distributing them to every person you meet. If you make a connection and have any desire to stay in touch, give them your card. Just make sure your new friend knows you’re not a networking numbers guy. Tell people that you would like to stay in touch when you hand over a card.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top


Stack Exchange Launches Programmer Recruiting Site
CNET, February 23

Stack Exchange, the company behind Stack Overflow, the influential-among-programmers Q&A site, unveiled a new jobs board for developers. This jobs board, Careers 2.0, puts an emphasis on helping hiring managers find programmers with good reputations among other programmers. For Stack Exchange, the new jobs board is part of an evolving business model, which leverages the phenomenal growth of the Stack Overflow site, which now has 11 million programmers a month using it.

Careers 2.0 is free to use for people looking for jobs, but charges an access fee for recruiters. One week of access is $500, for example, which should be enough time to find a good programmer. There's no free trial, but there is a money-back guarantee if a customer can't find a good candidate. What makes Careers 2.0 interesting is that it illustrates the growing importance of online reputation for job seekers. Also, it shows how any site that helps users create a professional reputation might be able to make money, at least until its users start including verifiable reputation scores in their resumes, thereby saving recruiters the expense of paying for resumes sorted by reputation. Having a form of peer review alongside a resume or job application is exactly the information a hiring manager might want and precisely what isn't available in any reliable way today.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top


How to Grow Young Feds at Your Agency
Federal Computer Week, February 10

Faced with a growing budget deficit, a two-year pay freeze for federal employees and potential workforce cuts, government agencies need to re-think how they attract and retain top young employees. In an analysis of recently hired feds from fiscal 2006 to fiscal 2008, the Partnership for Public Service discovered that 24.2% left their jobs within two years, according to a report released in November 2010. Agencies need to do a better job of creating an attractive mission statement and embracing Web 2.0 technologies. Generation Y employees also want to be trusted with responsibility, respected by their co-workers and appreciated for performing well. The article some of the best ideas from experts inside and outside the government on how to help young workers flourish at a federal agency.

The first step to retaining talented young federal employees is linking their work to the agency’s mission. Not surprisingly, many people say they joined the federal government because they wanted to make a difference. Generation Y is no different. Managers must tie employees’ work to the agency’s overall mission so young feds can understand the value of their contributions. Second, be a mentor and give young feds greater responsibility. Agency leaders must be willing to coach young feds while recognizing the technical skills young employees bring to the table. Leaders must create the kind of culture that is welcoming to young government employees but benefits everybody because it permits open conversations and sharing. Third, establish clear, consistent performance measures. Young employees should be clearly told what’s expected of them and how they will be evaluated.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top


The Challenges of Being a Modern Employee
Web Worker Daily, February 21

Today’s 24/7 digital economy is creating a fresh set of challenges for the modern workforce. Thanks to the mass adoption of high-speed communications and advances in hardware and software, the office can be wherever your Internet connection and digital device – whether laptop, smart phone or tablet - is. For Web workers, this presents three primary challenges: knowing when and how to switch between personal time and work; finding new ways to optimize productivity and motivation; and dealing with potential security issues created by a remote workforce.

With 24/7 access to information comes the challenge of switching off. One of the advantages of Web working is the fact that you can work when it’s convenient for you, but this doesn’t mean you should be working all hours. Long hours aren’t healthy: arrange to see people and get out of your home office so that you do not fall into the routine of continually working. Especially if you’re a freelancer or entrepreneur, you can get caught up in your own Web worker bubble and forget about the world beyond your home office. Find out what events and meet-ups are in your local area. Whether you want to meet like-minded people, build your network or just go out for a few drinks, sites like Plancast can be a great place to get started.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top


Time to Toot Your Own Horn
MentorNet, February 2011

How and when should women self-promote their skills and accomplishments in the workplace? Despite realizing that doing so well could be critical to their career development, many women may feel uncomfortable speaking about their accomplishments and don’t take advantage of simple procedures that can help advance their careers. Recently, an array of experts weighed in on how women can improve their self-promotion skills, as well as what it takes to gain visibility in the workplace. It turns out there is a fine line to walk between becoming more visible and being seen as too promotional.

Lauren Rikleen, Executive-in-Residence at the Center for Work and Family at Boston College, believes that women need to promote themselves better. To do so, we should all reframe how we view self-promotion and look at it as something positive. She recommends helping other women out by spreading the word about the achievements of other females. Women are almost socialized against self-promotion, fearing that they may be perceived as conceited or bragging. Women might find it hard to talk about their accomplishments, believing that actions speak louder than words. While networking with other women or during time with your mentor, speak about your accomplishments and get comfortable doing it.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top


Computer and Information Science and Engineering: One Discipline, Many Specialties
Communications of the ACM, Vol. 54 No. 3, March 2011

The rapid evolution of IT is leading to a changing role for computing and information (C&I) research and education in academia. A multi-disciplinary approach, which views C&I as one broad discipline with many vibrant specialties, is most reflective of the fact that technology continuously adjusts to very different needs in society. Many universities have established or expanded schools and programs that integrate a broad range of sub-disciplines in C&I. In addition, government bodies such as the NSF are creating new program that widen the scope of research and education in C&I. Going forward, the C&I community should focus on building a coherent view of the broad discipline, building bridges between its constituents, and building bridges to other disciplines.

Computing and information (C&I) can be best described as the study of the design and use of digital systems that support storing, processing, accessing and communicating information. At the broadest level possible, C&I is a use-driven academic discipline that encompasses elements of both science and engineering. While mathematics continues to be the most important foundation for C&I, cognitive, cultural, social, organizational, and legal issues are increasingly important. Moreover, as applications become increasingly important within every branch of the computing field, this will lead to a broader foundation for C&I beyond mathematics. Similar to a school of medicine or a college of agriculture, the correct organizational principle for a use-driven research area such as C&I is not common foundations, but shared concerns about the use of C&I systems. C&I researchers with different foundational knowledge and knowledge of different application domains will often need to work together in order to design, implement, and evaluate C&I systems and provide students with the education needed to do so.


Click Here to View Full Article
to the top