July 19, 2012

The Biggest Challenge Facing Silicon Valley Companies.

Human Resources imageThe Biggest Challenge Facing Silicon Valley Companies.

 

“What’s the biggest challenge facing companies that bank with you?” asked John Cook from Geekwire.

“Finding appropriate talent,” answered Greg Becker, CEO of Silicon Valley Bank. “It is such an anomaly relative to the rest of the general economy that it is hard for the general economy to grasp how different it is.”

 

The problem is ubiquitous. Even when there is a general talent surplus and high unemployment, the problem of finding the right talent persists, especially in the tech sectors.

In a recent interview that Greg Becker gave with John Cook of Geekwire, “Silicon Valley Bank’s Greg Becker: Why Facebook’s Stock Fall May be a Good Thing”, Mr. Becker reflected on the biggest challenges facing many tech companies in the Silicon Valley. SVB serves thousands of startup companies internationally, as well as some 600 venture capital firms, so Mr. Becker certainly understands the challenges of the tech company clients in the Silicon Valley and beyond.

As the tech market continues to strengthen, the talent acquisition and retention challenges grow as well. The tech industry is generally going well, especially sectors such as cloud computing, social networking, and software-as-a-service (SaaS). SVB notes that in terms of new start up accounts that the bank is opening, after a slight decline in 2009, 2012 was a great year; and each subsequent year has been much better.

In the tech industry finding the right talent is made more difficult because of its own strength. There are new and growing established companies soaking up the tech and engineering talent available. While the overall unemployment rate in June came in at 8.2 %, places like Silicon Valley and New York, Washington, Chicago, Boston, Dallas, Houston and Seattle are all importing talent from abroad to fill the gap.

Talent is being imported by not only the biggies like Google, Apple, Yahoo, Oracle, eBay, and Intel, but also by start-ups! According to a recent article “Silicon Valley ranks highest in ‘H-1B intensity’ for foreign worker visas”, more than 60 percent of the workers sought by Bay Area companies work in “computer occupations” and the second largest group is engineers.

Solving the talent shortage problem in the U.S. in the long run will require a strategic and/or cultural shift in educational priorities.  In the short term, companies will recruit new and upcoming talent, musical chairs between current and new players will continue, and we will import foreign talent.

When looking for the right talent for growing tech companies, it is imperative to pull out all the stops. Contact Redfish Technology to recruit exceptional executive talent in Marketing, Sales, Project Management, and Engineering.

 

About Redfish Technology:

Redfish cut its teeth in high tech in the Silicon Valley starting in 1996, and continues to enjoy long lasting relationships with companies of all sizes from start-ups to Fortune 50 companies. The company offers nationwide executive talent search and staffing services, and boasts offices in Silicon Valley, the East Coast, and the Intermountain West. Redfish specializes in talent acquisition in the High Tech and Green Tech / Alternative Energy sectors.

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