Why is hiring hard?

Netflix / Eng Catsattack
Jun 29, 2018 46 Comments

It feels like every hiring manager complains that hiring is hard. This even seems true at FAANG, and the “start ups” like lyft, and uber.

— let’s ask a couple questions, about why hiring is hard:
1. Is the work not fulfilling?
2. Are you paying a competitive salary?
3. Are the benefits bad?
4. Are the perks bad?
5. Are you in a bad location?

So, to the managers that are having trouble hiring, why don’t you fix these things?

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TOP 46 Comments
  • Apple / Eng JBhsue12
    Hiring is hard because there are more open positions than strong candidates. And more weak candidates than open positions.
    Jun 29, 2018 9
    • Visa / Eng Suite E
      Can you give me an example of an indivisibly complex work that you are doing that cannot possibly be split into simpler sub-tasks without sharing any trade secrets?
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      I can. Getting anything into the Linux kernel, or any other large OSS project with wide reaching infrastructure impact.
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Quantcast ftyhue
      Great example. Now tell me how many jobs require such skills
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      Mine?
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Intuit gibson
      Maintaining a fork isn’t that hard.
      Jul 3, 2018
  • eBay ottoman
    Hiring is hard because the interview process sucks
    Jun 29, 2018 5
    • Twitter Fyre
      No? I can guarantee you that good people are not bothered by interviews - they pass them in any format. The problem is that it's difficult to find good people and even if you find them, it's difficult to get them hired, because they have multiple offers.
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      You’d be surprised how bad some peoples interviews are.
      Jun 29, 2018
    • eBay ottoman
      @Fyre

      I’d say that’s true in only a very small number of cases. Some great developers get passed up because of dumb reasons during the interview process. Didn’t the creator of JQuery fail his Google interview because he couldn’t answer a red-Black tree question? I’m sure he’d be a top performer at Google, but he was rejected because of a dumb question
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      The creator of homebrew was rejected from Google because he couldn’t invert a binary tree: https://twitter.com/mxcl/status/608682016205344768?s=21
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      1. Interviews are bad.
      2. Interviewees are bad
      Jun 29, 2018
  • Cisco fandango
    Because there is a vast difference between what employers consider hireable vs what kind of people they really want on the job.

    Most managers want people who will passionately jump on issues, solve any problem on time and build solutions that get the job done.

    How do they vet people for above attributes? By asking for some wildcard matching problem on a whiteboard in 30 mins. If this doesn't ring a logical disconnect, you are the same as the managers struggling to hire.

    There's also a wide gap between what management thinks is sufficient pay for shitty hours vs what that person can command in the market with better hours
    Jun 29, 2018 2
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      Yeah, I’ve always wondered why companies don’t pay more if they can’t hire? There seems to be a cognitive dissonance?

      Like, in a market with demand that outstrips supply, shouldn’t capitalism fix it?
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Cisco fandango
      Capitalism does fix it. Most companies not willing to Shell out market rates struggle to hire and be competitive. Their products suck and slowly start losing market share and customers.

      Imagine if Oracle and IBM actually had a culture of paying top of market for the best talent (engineering and others), do you really think aws would've been a thing? We're talking IBM here. They used to be Google at one point.

      Nope. Amazon paid for the best, hired the best and became market leaders. If Amazon stops paying the best (cost in salary and in wlb and in ethics), others willing to pay for the best will come ahead with something new.

      Capitalism does fix it but rest assured that the worst large public employers have a lot more mistakes to make before they shut down completely.
      Jun 29, 2018
  • Quantcast ftyhue
    Shortage of talented people
    Jun 29, 2018 0
  • Visa / Eng Suite E
    Because a surprisingly large number of managers who need to hire suck and are idiots, perhaps?
    Jun 29, 2018 1
    • CareerBuilder JonDoe1
      Yeah, it's always management's fault
      Jun 29, 2018
  • In short, companies are picky and thrifty
    Jun 29, 2018 0
  • CareerBuilder JonDoe1
    Hiring is hard because there are more jobs than qualified candidates, full stop. If you immediately quadrupled your pay and offered every perk imaginable you'd of course be able to hire away from FANG, but you'd just shift the problem somewhere else. There just aren't enough qualified candidates.
    Jun 29, 2018 5
    • Visa / Eng Suite E
      Maybe the definition of ‘qualified candidates’ needs a rethink?
      Jun 29, 2018
    • CareerBuilder JonDoe1
      The definition of qualified candidates is constantly rethought. No matter how you define it, there aren't enough of them. We aren't making this up. It's not a conspiracy
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      Pretell, if you moved the office to somewhere nice, and quadrupled pay, what negative thing would happen?
      Jun 29, 2018
    • CareerBuilder JonDoe1
      You'd run out of money
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      Are you sure? What I’ve generally found is that a senior person can do 3-4x what a junior person can do in the allotted time.

      Do they get paid 3-4x more? Usually not.
      Jun 29, 2018
  • NAVEX Global HollaBackG
    Because companies want a Lamborghini candidate but are offering a Hyundai salary.
    Jun 29, 2018 0
  • Google Mickey
    When you realize how bad the average person actually is at their job... you get why hiring is hard. For junior candidates maybe 1/10 interviews I do is decent. For senior candidates...less.
    Jun 29, 2018 6
    • Google Mickey
      That’s a good question. Netflix is known for high pay but Google pays senior levels pretty well in my experience. I suspect the recruiter was trying to start low. I hear that’s common.
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      What’s the point in that? I’m not going to spend 3-4 weeks studying if I don’t think I will get the job and better comp?
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Google Mickey
      Hard for me to say, I don’t know much about our recruiting. Been over a decade since I went thru it and given that so many recruiters have less than a year tenure I don’t think they are terribly reliable. If you don’t mind sharing, what was the numbers the recruiter gave you?
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      160 to 180. The equity was similar, but from my understanding most of it wasn’t accessible until 1 year was up.
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      For what it’s worth, the recruiter was fired shortly after
      Jun 29, 2018
  • Facebook public
    1. Yes. 2. Yes. 3. No. 4. No. 5. No. What else you got?
    Jun 29, 2018 4
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      Have you tried giving them more fulfilling work?
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Facebook public
      You have to be qualified first before you get the opportunity to do work. Your questions was about hiring :)
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      And hiring is still hard for you?
      Jun 29, 2018
    • Facebook public
      Yes of course, very hard to find qualified and capable people.
      Jun 29, 2018
  • Amazon / Mgmt
    DEPk35

    Amazon Mgmt

    PRE
    Capital One
    DEPk35more
    STFU.
    Jun 29, 2018 1
  • Microsoft SOkn03
    How are managers supposed to fix bad location?
    Jun 29, 2018 1
    • Netflix / Eng Catsattack
      OP
      Advocating for remote, moving the office location to upper management
      Jun 29, 2018