Monday, October 15, 2012

The Power of We | Virtual Self-Study Groups

Today is Blog Action Day. This year's theme is The Power of We, a celebration of people working together to make a positive difference in the world.

The Power of We in Boston

Here's how we are making a difference in Boston.

The Challenge: Companies are looking for technology workers and they are not finding workers with the skills they need.

The Solution: Form virtual self-study groups to train workers on technology skills.

Narrowing the Skills Gap, One Chapter at a Time

Boston PHP Meetup
, the largest Web technology Meetup in the United States with more than 3,000 members, launched this virtual self-study group initiative in January 2011. 

The format of a virtual self-study group is as follows:

~ Each participant purchases the same textbook.
~ Each participant commits to read one chapter per week, complete the exercises and post a link to their completed work.
~ Each participant obtains assistance by posting questions to a discussion area set up on the Boston PHP Message Board.

One group is currently under way: PHP Percolate! Season 4.

Two groups are about to begin on November 4: jQuery jAM, Season 2 and HTML5 Brunch, Season 2.

More than 80 alumni are enshrined on the Self-Study Group | Wall of Accomplishment.

Training is Virtual

Since training is virtual you do not need to live in Boston to participate.  If you are interested in learning Web technology, then join us and help narrow the skills gap, one chapter at a time.

[ NOTE: Follow Beantown Web on Twitter @webapprentices and on Facebook by becoming a Fan of Beantown Web. ]


Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Boston Web Tech Job Market | Q4 2012‏

"The need for open source programming language skills that power a huge number of Web applications and technologies is evident in requests for Python and Ruby. Both have hit all-time highs in six of the 10 months in 2012."
On a national level, The Dice Report for October states that eleven technology skills reached all-time demand highs in early October.  Leading the pack is "software developers."

Boston Web Tech Job Market

On a local level, the Boston technology job market confirms the ongoing need for programming skills.  Although the market has softened somewhat over the past three months, demand for Web tech professionals continues to be strong.

The list of Top 20 Web Technologies in Boston has been updated for the fourth quarter. The list is based on keyword searches in job postings at The most in-demand technologies are listed more frequently than less in-demand technologies.

Here are the Seven Biggest Movers from early July to early October, listed by percentage increase:
  1. SaaS  | 127 listings 26%
  2. C#  | 292 listings 07%
  3. jQuery  | 170 listings 06%
  4. XML  | 278 listings 04%
  5. ASP.NET  | 148 listings 03%
  6. SharePoint  | 128 listings 03%
  7. JavaScript  | 356 listings 01%
Go forth and develop Web-based applications.  Your skills are in demand, especially if have SaaS (software as a service) experience.  The demand for software development skills does not appear to be platform-specific.  Demand is strong in a Microsoft environment (C#, ASP.NET, SharePoint), as well as, in an open-source environment (jQuery, XML, JavaScript).  No matter.  Multiple job offers await.

Fall Training Opportunities

Here are two virtual training opportunities to consider joining this fall.

jQuery jAM, Season 2 -- a virtual self-study group focused on learning the basics of jQuery Mobile.

HTML5 Brunch, Season 2 -- a virtual self-study group focused on learning the basics of HTML5.

Both programs begin Sunday, November 4.  The only cost is the purchase of a textbook (under $30).

Full Disclosure:
Gene Babon created both programs in his capacity as Co-Organizer of Boston PHP MeetupMerlin Calo will be coordinating HTML5 Brunch, Season 2 under the HTML5 Boston Meetup banner. Gene Babon and Jeremy Osborn will help launch HTML5 Brunch, Season 2 at an HTML5 Boston Meetup on Monday, October 29.

Top 20 Web Technologies in Boston

Here is an abbreviated list of the most in-demand web technologies in Boston. [ or from early July ] listed by number of job postings at
  1. SQL | 815 02%
  2. Java | 541 04%
  3. Oracle | 450 26%
  4. JavaScript | 356 01%
  5. SQL Server | 336 00%
  6. C# | 292 07%
  7. XML | 278 05%
  8. Social Media | 220 01%
  9. "Web Services" | 200 02%
  10. HTML + CSS | 187 12%
  11. jQuery | 170 06%
  12. Perl | 161 15%
  13. Python | 159 17%
  14. ASP.NET | 148 03%
  15. Ajax | 144 01%
  16. MySQL | 133 18%
  17. SharePoint | 128 03%
  18. UI | 127 07%
  19. SaaS | 127 22%
  20. PHP | 126 31%
An expanded version of this list -- Boston's Top 50 Web Technologies -- is being counted down throughout the fourth quarter @webapprentices.

[ NOTE: Follow Beantown Web on Twitter @webapprentices and on Facebook by becoming a Fan of Beantown Web. ]

Monday, October 01, 2012

Boston's Rockstar Recruiters | Q4 2012

Everyone is looking for rockstars.

Companies are looking for rockstars.

Hiring Managers are looking for rockstars.

Recruiters are looking for rockstars.

If you are currently in the job market, why shouldn't you look for rockstars, as well?

Beantown Web asked the question, "Where are the rockstar recruiters?"

Boston's Top 100 Technology Recruiters

To begin the quest, Beantown Web identified more than 240 technology recruiters via LinkedIn.  Most are located in the Boston area.  Some are located in New Hampshire and Rhode Island and do a significant amount of business in the Boston area.

Beantown Web then turned to LinkedIn to identify customer satisfaction scores.  In particular, how many people were willing to provide a public recommendation for that recruiter?

Rockstars have gold albums.  Mere mortals have to make due with recommendations.

In order for a recruiter to make the Top 100 List they had to garner at least three LinkedIn recommendations.

Boston's Top 10 Technology Recruiters

It takes courage to show up at open mike night and play in front of a crowd of strangers.  It takes talent to impress them enough to give you a standing ovation.  Boston's Top 10 Technology Recruiters have been brought back for an encore by delivering rockstar performances to least 20 cheering fans.

Here are Boston's Top 10 Technology Recruiters [number of LinkedIn recommendations]:
  1. Scott Dunlop [95] -- The Bivium Group
  2. Jamie LeBlanc [45] -- The Bivium Group
  3. Brendan Andersen [39] -- CyberCoders
  4. Leanne Owens [33] -- Onward Search
  5. Luis Perez [29] -- Winter Wyman
  6. Bill Sullivan [28] -- Chase Technology Consultants
  7. Chris Mitchell [27] -- Winter Wyman
  8. Andrea Williams [26] -- Career Minded Recruiting
  9. Debbie Strevens [25] -- Jobspring Partners
  10. Scott White [23] -- HireMinds
The Top 100 Rockstar Recruiter Countdown begins @webapprentices and will continue throughout the fourth quarter (92 days).  Simply follow @webapprentices and connect with your favorite Rockstar Recruiter each day.

If you are aware of a Top 10 Technology Recruiter who should be on the list, go to Beantown Web on Facebook and cast your vote for your favorite Top 10 Rockstar Recruiter.