4 Ways You Absolutely KNOW You Found the Right IT Consultant

How to Get the Best IT ConsultantsChoosing an IT consultant can be a daunting task, especially for smaller businesses and hiring managers who don’t have experience working with consultants. Though consultants boast unique expertise, adaptability, and proficiency, their time often comes at a higher hourly cost than permanent, full-time IT pros. But for many tech teams—especially those looking to reduce turnover costs and/or increase efficiency—hiring an IT consultant can be game changing. In order to make sure your investment pays off, consider the statements below. Mentally checking off all four before extending a contract will help you find the best fit.

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Twin Cities IT Salary Guide for 2017

Our 2017 Salary Guide data comes from a variety of sources – actual salaries ranging from Fortune 500 and mid-sized companies, to smaller emerging companies, and local and national research. Check out our infographic below, or view our IT Salary Guide.

ESP IT 2017 Tech Salary Guide Inforgraphic

View our 2017 IT Salary Guide

ESP IT continues to monitor and analyze Minnesota tech hiring trends, compensation, and benefits information in order to better serve our clients. The market insight in this infographic comes from our team of IT staffing experts, along with local and national research sources, including the Minnesota High Tech Association. If you have any questions or comments about our 2017 Tech Salary Guide, please contact us.

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5 Steps to Succeed on a Scrum Team as a BA

5 Steps for BAs to Succeed on a Scrum Team

Originally written by Trina Silverglate, IT Consultant; Abridged August 2017

In Scrum methodology, the BA is not a defined role, but often companies decide it will be most effective to include one on their teams. Because of the lack of definition around the role, as a Business Analyst Contractor, you can end up with a wide variance of responsibilities. To set yourself up for success on your next Scrum project, ESP has identified these 5 simple steps:

1. Learn About The Team To Know Where You Fit In
Ask if the project will have individuals that are dedicated to the roles of Product Owner and Scrum Master. If not, a BA with Scrum experience or certification may be asked to help fill one or both of those roles. If there is a dedicated Product Owner and/or Scrum Master on the team, find out how she or he will perform that role on the project. Know where you’ll be needed, and avoid confusion concerning responsibilities.

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10 Reasons to Embrace IoT

10 reasons to embrace the internet of thingsAll techies hold at least a fundamental understanding of the Internet of Things. Since 2014 especially, the world of sensors, connected devices and increased Internet technologies has exploded—with researchers predicting 30 to 50 billion connected devices by the year 2020. But despite these climbing numbers, some IT pros continue to view the IoT as a cultural trend rather than a dynamic shift in the way their industry—and careers—will evolve in the coming years. Are you among those still hesitant to fully embrace the IoT? The following 10 tips for IT pros and businesses will help you better understand how the IoT can add value to your career.

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Do IT Managers Favor Remote Tech Teams?

Opportunities for remote work have become a natural part of almost all business models, and tech teams are no exception. Often, employers and supervisors use remote working as a perk to attract and retain top tech talent. The question is: do the pros of offering this perk outweigh the cons?

In 2013, Yahoo!’s then-CEO Marissa Mayer made headlines when she butted up-and-coming trends by instituting a telecommuting ban for the company’s employees. In the year that followed, some claimed Mayer’s decision was sound—citing studies that reported remote workers’ abuse of privileges and overall detriment to a team’s productivity.

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Top IT Certifications to Propel Your Career Into 2017

What IT Certifications Do I Need for 2017As an IT pro, you already know certifications will distinguish you from the pack. The
question is: do you know which certifications hiring managers and project managers are looking for? With so many certifications available to IT pros, it can be hard to determine which one(s) to pursue. And to make matters more complicated, the most in-demand certifications are not always the ones most likely to boost your pay and advance your career. That’s why we’ve created a list to help you weigh your best options in the new year. Whether you’re looking for a new opportunity or hoping to advance your career in 2017, the following certifications will bolster your resume and help you meet your goals.

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Do You Need A Personal Trainer For Your Tech Career?

Help From IT Recruiter in IT Job SearchDid you meet your goals in 2016? If your answer—at least in part—is “no” then you’re not alone. Millions of people began 2017 by reflecting on changes they want to make. In many cases, the achievement of these goals will depend on support from trained professionals who will motivate, encourage, and challenge people on their journeys. Likewise, when it comes to your professional goals, seeking the advice of a technical recruiter may be your ticket to finding new opportunities and advancing your career. Below are some questions to ask yourself that will help you decide if it’s time for a “personal trainer” in your tech career.

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Streamline Your Business Processes with the Cloud

How to Use the Cloud For Your BusinessTo many people, the cloud seems like a mystery. But it has come a long way from its more humble origins as a simple data storage mechanism. Now, the cloud can help you streamline your business processes by making more than storage available from any device, anywhere. If you haven’t considered moving your business processes to the cloud, now may be the time to explore the option more fully.

Less Maintenance with Cloud Computing

One of the biggest advantages of cloud computing is the lower cost associated with equipment maintenance. Instead of running onsite servers to store your data and applications, you can outsource the equipment part of the equation to another company. That means you don’t have to worry about keeping up with the pace of technology or addressing failures. It also eliminates the need to keep staff on hand to manage server operations, allowing you to direct your human capital to more profitable activities.

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ESP’s Tech Gadget Gift Guide 2016

Gift Ideas for TechiesThe holiday season is upon us, and what better gifts for IT pros (to give and receive) than the hottest tech gadgets for 2016? Here are our picks for ESP’s annual “Holiday Tech Gadget Gift Guide”:

Nomad Key ($20)

Gift Guide for IT ProfessionalsThis is the perfect gift for someone whose phone is always running out of battery or for someone who is always on the move. It works by plugging into any USP port to charge your mobile device. About the size of a house key, the Nomad key can be purchased for both iPhone and Android and attaches to your key ring.

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Happy Thanksgiving to You and Yours

esp-it-thanksgiving-card-2016

This Thanksgiving, we just want to take a moment to say thank you.

Thank you to our clients, partners, and friends, for your support and goodwill this year.

Thank you to our consultants: our great reputation in the Twin Cities IT Market is due to your skills, hard work, and advocacy.

And thank you to our internal staff for your dedication, commitment to integrity, and always striving to be the best you can be.

May you and yours have a very happy Thanksgiving.

-from all of us at ESP IT

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