how (not) to keep employees

despite the financial crisis people like me, engineers, keep moving between companies, some people for money, some others for new challenges, but that is not the whole picture…

people need to be properly rewarder, made confident that what you do makes sense, being told the good and the bad of the company, give them hope that they’ll grow in the company and there will be always a place for them, and ultimately that the company will be always capable of paying for the bills

no, Nokia, laying off “god knows how many people”, is not a good way to gain trust from ur people… I better move on my own instead of waiting u to lay me off… and I did it

no, “startup-pb”, laying off an engineer the same day i get on board, is not a good welcoming message for me… even worse when I discover that 6 others have been dismissed in the 5 months before with the same unfaithful excuse

no, “startup-book”, telling only the good and not the bad, doesn’t help… everybody will just think everything is good

even at Google, it is not the first time that I hear people leaving cause of bad management… there is a huge disparity between the way engineers are considered, and everyone else in the company…

so, even in bad times like these, engineers, and other technical people, just move

and u are not losing only a person, or a human resource as u call him/her, u are loosing company knowledge and an investment that will be ***ing expensive for you to substitute… just look at how much head hunters pretend, and how long it will take to train or get up to speed the new person

and ultimately… yes, a nice and welcoming office space, matters


Google’s hr process

UPDATE: quote: “Am I still interested in working for google? Sure. Would I be interested in going through another 4-6 months of Google-interview-roulette? No.

+ + +

saranno anche fighi ma hanno raggiunto il mio limite di sopportazione…

…they might be the best company ever… but they have no respect for candidates

Subject: Re: Hi Guido
From: Guido Serra
Date: Tue, 27 Jul 2010 14:24:14 +0200
Cc: Marcus XXXXXXX
To: Ganapathy XXXXXXX

Hi Ganapathy,
I’m really interested, yes.

But I’d like to know in advance what will be the HR process.

I’ve already been 5 times in your process… it is a great opportunity you are giving me, but I won’t like to get through 4 phone calls and 4 interview onsite again and again and again…

I added in Cc: Marcus XXXXXXX, from HR for the SRE’s… he knows what I’m talking about.

May I consider upfront what you are going to propose to me? (location/role/salary)


Guido Serra

On Jul 27, 2010, at 2:11 PM, Ganapathy XXXXXXX via LinkedIn wrote:

> LinkedIn
> Ganapathy XXXXXXXX has sent you a message.
> Date: 7/27/2010
> Subject: Hi Guido
> Hi Guido,
> Hope this mail finds you in good.
> I found your details online while researching on LinkedIn.
> We are currently looking for engineering talent to work on design and develop systems to run Google Search, Gmail, YouTube, Wave, Maps, Voice, App Engine, and more.
> You’ll have the opportunity to manage, automate, and make data-based decisions and judgment calls which influence globally distributed applications. You’ll own the production services which comprise *, and critical infrastructure like GFS, BigTable, MapReduce and large-scale ‘cloud computing’ clusters., also will be driving performance and reliability from software and infrastructure at massive scale — where dealing in petabytes and gigabits and shifting by orders of magnitude is routine
> Please let me know if you would be interested in having an exploratory conversation about opportunities with Google.
> Hope to hear from you soon, your one sentence in reply would be appreciated.
> Regards,
> ganapathy

other links…

+ Why Google Employees Quit
+ AOL Adopts Google’s “Interminable” Hiring Process
+ Google’s HR Stinks!

ADDED (4/8/2010) on Piaw’s Blog: Hiring Committee Stories

Hi Piaw,
I’ve been on the other side of the barrier 5 times… not 5 interviews, for 5 processes! (2 not passing the dummy hr guy reading the questions from a paper.. cause he/she was not able to formulate/argument properly the request)

I did 1 interview process till the end of it as IT Operations… than, the “hiring committee” decided that they did a wrong job description and they needed a project manager instead… which I’m at the time, but I was not asked for those info.

The 2 other interviews were as SRE… once I was dropped by an SRE interviewing me, and another time by an HR guy which missed the appointment and started arguing with me on the phone.

All the time, the kind of request I failed were the mnemonical ones. I do not care what is the default signal from kill, I use -9 or -1 and in case I look at “man”.

The hr process in Google… sucks.

Guido Serra