Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Fastest Growing Companies | Fortune 100‏

Vacation over -- back to work!

“From July to September, 15% of the companies interviewed (in Massachusetts) plan to hire more employees."

Of the 18,000 U.S. employers surveyed, 18% expect to increase their staff levels during the third quarter according to the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey. The fourth quarter survey is due in early September.

Fastest Growing Companies

So, where should one start looking for employment opportunities? One avenue is to target large companies that have been growing during the downturn. Fortune magazine has released its annual list of the 100 fastest growing Fortune 500 companies.

While 20 of these companies are international, many states landed at least one company on the list. Here are the states with the most fast-growing large companies:

  • California | 15
  • Texas | 8
  • New York | 6
  • Massachusetts | 5
  • Michigan | 5
  • Illinois | 5
You can access the list for your state at the Fortune section of CNNMoney.com.

Fastest Growing Companies in Massachusetts

Here are the six fastest growing large companies in Massachusetts:

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  1. Pegasystems | Cambridge
  2. NetScout Systems | Westford
  3. Cubist Pharmaceuticals | Lexington
  4. Sapient | Boston
  5. Vistaprint | Lexington *
  6. Biogen Idec | Weston

NOTE: Vistaprint is listed as an international company. Its US Operations are headquartered in Lexington, MA.

Additional Resources

Additional fast-growing lists include the following:

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Monday, August 30, 2010

Chowda Chat | Brian Rinaldi

Chowda Chat is a periodic Beantown Web installment that features a conversation with an influential member of the Boston technology community.

The purpose of Chowda Chat is to provide Web technology professionals with information to help advance their careers. The format involves three questions and responses followed by one final thought.

Today's Chowda Chat presents the insights of Brian Rinaldi, applications developer, software engineer and fellow blogger at Remote Synthesis.

You have a Bachelors Degree in History and English from The University of Miami. How did you make the transition to applications development and land that first programming position?

"Well, to be honest, I just needed a job and history wasn't cutting it. I started working for a marketing firm in Miami and messing around with web site development in Dreamweaver. A friend of mine told me he had taken this Fast Track to ColdFusion course, gotten a job at a startup and was making good money. So, on his recommendation, I took the course and he got me hired at his company and the rest is history. Such was the 90's, you didn't need much experience to get hired as a developer. Times have certainly changed."

Is it true that you just joined the Adobe team here in Boston? What is your new role?

"I joined Adobe on August 16th. My title is Web Community Manager for Flash Platform. I work with the Learning Resources team within Adobe that produces things like the API documentation, community help and many other valuable content resources. The goal of my job is to help our team to have a direct channel to the community for contributions and feedback. I'm extremely excited about it as it gives me the opportunity to continue to work closely with the products I love as a developer while staying closely connected to the community that I have been so involved with over the years."

You are passionate about rich internet applications (RIA). How can our readers obtain training in this emerging field?

"First of all, as a developer, RIA's are just too much fun to build and offer so many exciting possibilities. I've been focused on Adobe-related technologies that can extend the user experience beyond the browser to the desktop and mobile devices. Several years ago I got so excited about the potential for these technologies that I created RIA Unleashed : Boston, an annual conference that I coordinate for the developer community."
"RIA Unleashed : Boston 2010 is a two-day event covering general web application development and the Adobe Flash Platform including Flex, AIR, ColdFusion and related technologies and disciplines. We have a full slate of topics and workshops. Best of all, I work really hard to keep the pricing on this event incredibly low so that anyone interested can afford to attend."
"While these technologies may not show up on the Top 20 lists often posted here they are filled with vibrant communities doing amazing things. Not just that but the job demand is there and growing. For instance, the Wall Street Journal recently had an article reporting how demand for Flash developers has been growing."

Final Thought

"Just because a language or technology doesn't show up on the top 20 list doesn't mean there isn't a solid job market in that technology. I personally see the skill set of the future (with the future being measured in months not years) landing more along the lines of someone who can translate applications across the multiple "screens" that companies want a presence in, whether it be web, desktop, mobile, devices, television and in the cloud. However, this will be a skill that is tough to boil down to keyword or two on a job posting. Join us at RIA Unleashed : Boston to learn more."

Follow Brian Rinaldi on Twitter.

Previous Chowda Chats

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Monday, August 16, 2010

Fastest Growing Startups | 2010

StartUpHire is a job search engine whose mission is to connect talented individuals to exciting career opportunities at venture backed companies.

They have compiled a list of the fastest growing start-ups backed by venture capital (VC). They focused on major metropolitan markets and formulated the list based on job postings during the second quarter.

The metropolitan areas include the following:

  • San Francisco
  • Boston
  • New York
  • Washington, DC
  • Seattle
  • Philadelphia
  • Austin
  • Atlanta

Access a list of the fastest-growing, VC-backed companies in these metropolitan areas at StartUpHire which provides direct access to job postings in these and other cities.

Boston's Fastest Growing Startups

The seven fastest growing VC-backed companies in and around Boston are as follows:

[ NOTE: Simply log into your LinkedIn account on a separate tab, then click the "in" icon next to the company name below to identify the LinkedIn connections you might have within that organization. ]

According to StartUpHire.com there are currently more than 900 job openings at startup companies in the Boston metro area. Fast growing companies need bright, energetic workers. Start making connections today!

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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Boston Market | August 2010

Are you stuck in the middle?

According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, being a middle-skilled worker seeking middle-skilled wages may not be an attractive place to hang your shingle.

Longer-term trends are at play. For one, the U.S. education system hasn't been producing enough people with the highly specialized skills that many companies, particularly in manufacturing, require to keep driving productivity gains. "There are a lot of people who are unemployed, but those aren't necessarily the people employers are looking for," says David Autor, an economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
For details access "Some Firms Struggle to Hire Despite High Unemployment"

While the article focuses on technology skills in manufacturing, a similar case might be argued for "middle-skilled" Web technology workers.

Top 20 Web Technologies in Boston

The list of Top 20 Web Technologies in Boston has been updated for August and appears in the right-hand column. "Middle-skilled" Web technologies might be defined as those Web skills that fall short of the Top 20 list.

It's not that these skills are not in demand, it's simply that other skills are mentioned more frequently in job descriptions, and thus appear to be in greater demand by employers.

The current threshold to make the Top 20 hovers around 100 job postings that mention a particular skill. Here are a few technologies that fall just short of this Top-20 threshold:

High Skill + High Demand

Whatever collection of Web technology skills you currently possess it is in your best interest to develop a high degree of competence and confidence in your skill-set. If you feel you are "stuck in the middle" then perhaps an upgrade is in order.

The top seven technologies are mentioned at least 200 times in job descriptions. Perhaps an upgrade to a skill that is in greater demand might be in order:

  • 1. SQL | 735 job postings
  • 2. Oracle | 615 job postings
  • 3. Java | 450 job postings
  • 4. XML | 286 job postings
  • 5. SQL Server | 285 job postings
  • 6. JavaScript | 263 job postings
  • 7. C# | 235 job postings

Needless-to-say, programming skills and database expertise never seem to go out of style. Demonstrating a "high-skill" level in a high-demand technology might be the road not taken to avoid becoming "stuck in the middle."

For additional information, check out a previous blog article:

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Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Interactive Media Awards | Q2 2010‏

The Interactive Media Awards honors outstanding achievement in website design and development. The awards are annual and are judged on a quarterly basis according to a rolling list of industry categories. The award winners for the second quarter have recently been announced.

Web designers and developers can view these sites to benchmark quality standards and stimulate creativity.

Best in Class

Here are the winning websites for the second quarter listed by category:

» Arts/Culture | Wellcome Collection

» Arts/Culture | BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn

» Association | National Association of Manufacturers

» Beauty/Cosmetics | The Hair Book Online

» Biotechnology | Tufts CTSI

» Community | Yunomi

» E-Commerce | UK Office Direct

» Financial Information | MintLife Personal Finance Blog

» Financial Information | BHG Corporate

» Government | Norfolk Constabulary

» Government | Brooklyn Bridge Park

» Health/Nutrition | MSN Health & Fitness

» Music | LEVEL Studios Holiday 09

» Public Relations | My St. Dominic's Madison

» Real Estate | Istanbul Saraylari

» School | KIPP Schools

» School | Pooh's Nursery School

» Training/Vocational | Microsoft SMSG Welcome Experience

» Training/Vocational | BMO Bank of Montreal, P&C Orientation

Outstanding Achievement

Additional websites were giving honorable mentions. These sites can be viewed by searching the "Outstanding Achievement" Award Level at the IMA website.

Call for Entries

The IMA judges are leaders in web design, advertising, public relations, publishing, news and other industries. Enter your best work now and receive feedback against the following criteria:

  • design
  • content
  • feature functionality
  • usability
  • standards compliance & cross-browser compatibility

The deadline for entries for the next round of judging is September 30.

Check out previous IMA winners here:

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