the "no good Perl jobs"/"no good Perl programmers" myth

Uri Guttman uri at
Sat Aug 5 17:40:11 BST 2006

>>>>> "NC" == Nicholas Clark <nick at> writes:

  NC> Some of the agents try to make jobs look sexy by using more
  NC> buzzwords, but the sort of calibre people they're looking to
  NC> recruit were (un)employed in 2001, so see through hype.

that buzzword stuff has been around for ages. that is why i think i
might be able to make a difference.

  NC> At least 3 people wanted me to apply for jobs and move to the US,
  NC> but nothing or nowhere so exciting that I had a U-turn on my "I
  NC> like London" policy.

hey, i was one of those and i got your reluctance to move here very
clearly! :) and that place actually has a branch in london but they
don't do that sort of work and they want bodies on site with no pond

  NC> So I'm starting to think that there's a bit of a myth here. There
  NC> may well be employers looking for good people who know Perl to do
  NC> jobs. But these are jobs that would suit 9-5 programmers who need
  NC> to pay a mortgage and feed a family, people with a Chinese wall in
  NC> their head to divide work from play. And how many good Perl people
  NC> do you know like that? The best Perl people are passionate.  And
  NC> probably that's why the jobs remain as vacancies - because your
  NC> spec is impossible to fill. If you really want good people then
  NC> you need to make it clear that you will stretch them, rather than
  NC> taking a dull job and trying to tart it up with this month's
  NC> buzzwords.

having been doing some placement now for a while (4 successes so far) i
understand more of the issues. the real problem i see (and where i hope
to succeed) is actually understanding the job requirements and the skill
sets of the applicants at a deep perl level. obviously i know perl way
beyond the capabilities of any HR or typical agent. i have even dealt
with a agents who used to be coders but they never knew any serious perl
(they may have seen some). now i don't know the london market (i have
some leads in nyc, boston and west coast) and getting you brits to move
over here is problematic (though i did get a german and a canadian to
move to nyc!).

soonish i will be making a more formal announcement of my recruiting
services on the perl jobs list. it will be called :)
just by being an agent who knows perl i should bring something to the
table like getting a good hacker past the pile of incoming resumes and
bypassing the HR twits and onto the eyeballs of the real technical
hiring person. what is most amazing is that i will make more money doing
this than i have ever done with perl hacking. and it will be part time
so i can still do perl work. but let me tell you it is more work than
you would think on the surface. not killer but not trivial either.


Uri Guttman  ------  uri at  --------
--Perl Consulting, Stem Development, Systems Architecture, Design and Coding-
Search or Offer Perl Jobs  ----------------------------

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