: Mall Lobby.com, Inc.
: IT staffing and consulting firm
: Washington, DC
: Miami, FL
Number of IT Employees
: Under 25
: The focus is to bring on seven new hires in Lansing, MI, 15 new hires in Columbia and North Charleston, SC, four new hires in Tallahassee and Miami, FL, five new hires in Little Rock, AR, 12 new hires in Richmond, VA and 25 new hires in the DC, Maryland and Northern Virginia areas. Atlanta, GA is on the list as well with a potential 20 new hires but that is still in process at the moment.
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The company's focus is to provide the best and brightest candidates for clients as new job openings arrive. Aside from technical acumen, the company tends to gravitate toward candidates who incorporate not only a spirit for learning more but also an attitude conducive to a client's work atmosphere.
Lang Maith, president/CEO, has over 13 years experience in IT. I have performed in a wide range of roles from PC technician, beta tester, help desk analyst, systems administrator, network engineer, release test engineer to consultant. Having served in each of these roles has introduced him to a number of technologies and innovations outside his scope of work which ultimately helps him stay as "out the box" as possible with his thinking.
Given all the news about the talent crunch, have you or are you finding it more difficult to find qualified IT professionals?
We haven't encountered any signs of a talent crunch at all. There's plenty of top notch and well-qualified candidates out there. I think if anything there just a shortage of job openings to support the forever growing population of techies.
What are your primary recruiting strategies? Do you work with recruiters, post jobs online, etc.?
Our recruiting style is slightly different. We are a carbon copy to most competitors with job postings, recruiters and other online efforts to attract new candidates but our biggest success has been from word of mouth advertising. Whether it's generated from clients or internally from our own employees to have someone place their stamp of approval on you goes a 100 times further than any other form of advertising you can allocate in your marketing budget.
What is the hiring process?
Typically, there's two to three interviews. First round will always be with us followed by our client's hiring manager via a phone screen. If the candidate can pass that round they will be called in for a face-to-face interview with the technical staff for technological assessments and interpersonal evaluations. We always test our candidates with a few general questions to ensure their resumes are accurate. Under the direction of our client, we will on occasion ask our candidates to take an on-line exam.
What should candidates know before they interview at Mall Lobby.com, Inc.?
Honesty wins the race. We come in contact daily with exaggerated skill sets and fictitious annual salaries. If someone has two to three years experience in Office 2003 they can't possibly be bringing home $100K; whereas if you have been in IT as a programmer for 15 years it's hard to believe that you have over 10 years experience in .NET.
We strongly favor hard workers who want to learn as much as possible plus go over and beyond in their IT career development. By doing this we can in turn promote candidates up the corporate ladder rather quickly as well as a significant boost in their annual incomes.
What makes for an outstanding potential hire?
An outstanding candidate is one who not only meets the standard job requirements but also brings increased value to the project with a diverse skill set, IT certifications, college education or a strong technical background.
What are red flags you look for when reviewing resumes?
Red flags that are quite common are candidates who try to use keywords or buzz words to land an interview but in all actuality may have no knowledge of that particular subject or technology.
Cut-n-paste resume seem to be the new trend. We've encountered a few resumes for network engineer positions where it seems a candidate may have changed the name on the resume just to pass it off as their own and when asked a specific set of questions with reference to their listed skills shown in the resume the interview comes to an abrupt end.
What kind of non-IT skills do your IT team members need, if any?
To become one of our employees candidates must exude professionalism, manners, integrity and desire to contribute. Negativity of any sort is simply not accepted.
How important is the cover letter in job queries?
The best advice to candidates would be to stay as concise yet informative as possible. Candidates should be able to effectively state their business in as little as two to three paragraphs. Life history stories on topics irrelevant to the position at hand ultimately creates a shift in enthusiasm.
Is the IT organization looking for certified skills, is that a must have or is there any other qualification that is a must have?
Most of the positions we receive at the client's discretion request that candidates have their MCSE, CCNA or DBA certifications. It's not a mandatory requirement in most cases but having your technical credentials is always a plus.
Does the organization hire 'newbies' and invest in training?
Newbies are always welcome. How else can newbies acquire the necessary experience they need in the workforce if they're never given the opportunity to be groomed and developed.
What characteristics or personality traits do you want in a hire, and don't want?
Humility and assertion is the win-win. For example a truly knowledgeable individual who gets the job done over and over again without humiliating or showing up their peers is much appreciated. On the other hand a conceited and overconfident "know it all" is someone we won't tolerate.
What does your company offer IT specialists as an employer?
We have a well-diverse range of benefits for our employees/contractors ranging from discounts on cell phones, PDAs, mortgage loans, automobiles, travel, etc.