U.S. Department of Labor declared that by 2020 there will be an essential shortage of IT skills that is around 1.4 million of IT job openings.
Tips & Tricks on How to Develop Software for Startups
Eugeniya Korotya

This is not what the IEEE USA says. The actual truth is that there is no shortage of STEM professionals. The facts are that people graduating with STEM degrees, even computer science degrees do not have an easy time getting a job.

Many of the companies that claim that they cannot find software engineers have a huge pipeline. For many years it has been a running joke in Silicon Valley that every experienced software engineer has interviewed with Google.

Google, Amazon and Facebook bring in huge numbers of engineers. They put them through an extremely demanding set of white board interviews. They also determine if there’s a “culture fit”. The end result is that they hire something like 1% or less of those who interview.

In software development there is gender discrimination and naked age discrimination. If, in fact, there was really a shortage of engineers, why would companies discriminate against experienced engineers. Yet unemployment among engineers rises dramatically after age 40, regardless of the persons current skills or background.

What there is actually a shortage of us young male engineers. The companies that are complaining about a shortage of engineers are in many cases uncomfortable with women engineers. They are even more uncomfortable with older engineers.

Many of the “studies” quoted here are highly slanted toward the perspective of the companies that hire engineers. These companies want to keep wages down. They also want to continue their practice of selection from a massive pool of applicants.

The first “trick” for a start-up is to try to get around biases about who it is you want to hire and how you want to do interviews. Think about why the managers are uncomfortable with engineers who may have more experience than they do. Think about how people with different backgrounds do not necessarily do well on the standard white board interviews. Or even whether white board interviews predict talent in software development.

There are small companies that do these things. One of these seems to be Basecamp. As far as I can tell, they don’t seem to have a problem finding people who want to work at Basecamp. Basecamp also supports remote work, which is extremely popular.

Startups like to believe that they “think out side the box”. That they’re “disrupters”. In fact, most of them are herd beasts, doing what everyone else does when it comes to hiring or even choosing the software they use (think outside the box — maybe JavaScript, Node.js and MongoDB are not actually the best choices).

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