Are We a Good Fit? How to Establish Culture Fit During a Tech Interview

Culture fit became a huge buzzword around 2012, and has since ingrained itself as a requirement for job seekers, consultants, and employers alike. But what do we mean when we say we are looking for a person—or opportunity—that is the right “fit” culturally? And has this concept become so commonplace that we’re losing sight of why it’s really important?

Whether in the tech industry or not, full-time employees spend more waking hours at work than anywhere else. This should incentivize companies to promote great cultures and compel professionals to work with businesses that align with individual values, practices, attitudes, and norms, creating a more positive workplace, better social interactions, and higher productivity. Ultimately, having a compatible tech team helps to create a thriving career for technology professionals and a flourishing company.

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Is Contract-To-Hire A Win-Win For Both Parties? What To Consider:

Is Contract To Hire A Win Win For Both Parties Pros And Cons To ConsiderWorking with or in IT, you’ve undoubtedly encountered contract-to-hire. Since gaining popularity around 2010, these opportunities have been purported as “win-win” solutions for employers and employees alike, allowing individuals to contract with a company for a defined period under the mutual intention of considering a more permanent arrangement when the contract is over. But while many find this middle-ground arrangement to be the best of both worlds, others have concluded that perm-only or contract-only arrangements are their best fit. That’s why it’s important for both parties to consider the positives and negatives before pursuing a contract-to-hire arrangement. Who knows – after considering all the facts, you may find yourself making an unexpected choice.

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Star Gigs: Choosing Between IT Contract Opportunities

4 Tips To Help You Choose Between IT Contract Opportunities As an IT consultant, your professional career is marked by many choices, changes, and adjustments. While these career choices don’t consist of choosing between the light and dark sides as is the case for your favorite Star Wars characters, you must strive every day to ensure that your actions and decisions are in line with your ultimate professional goals. In light of the tech talent shortage, which has led to increased opportunities for IT pros, deciding on your path may be more challenging than ever before – particularly if you find yourself faced with multiple contract opportunities. While navigating these multiple offers or opportunities can be tricky, these tips from the battlefront experts will help you “use the force” and land your best IT gig:

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Job Wars: Choosing Between Full-Time IT Offers 

downloadThough your IT adventure isn’t taking place a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, it’s filled with some of the same exciting twists and turns that the on-screen story brings to life. Like your favorite Star Wars characters, faced with choosing between good and evil, your choice to become an IT pro set the course for your future. It also meant that you’ll have to make many more difficult decisions in the years to come. For some, these decisions may not only have included considering one offer, but choosing between two or more opportunities. Due to the tech talent shortage, IT pros may frequently find themselves in such a position during their careers when planning to move into a new full time role. Knowing how to professionally navigate the process, from communicating with IT hiring managers to making a sound decision, will be key to helping you land the best opportunities. Before entering the “battlefield,” consider these tips from the Star Wars big leagues:

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Screen Top IT Talent For Potential, Not Experience

The good news for hiring managers: an IT pro who doesn’t meet your years-of-experience expectations could really be your best fit.

Sifting through applications is one of the most important first hurdles for an IT hiringgraficagris manager to overcome in the selection process. Unfortunately, this first step can also be the downfall of the hiring process due to one key mistake: prioritizing applications with greater years of experience instead of looking for contenders whose experience shows potential. This mistake can not only run the risk of losing out on top consultants and employees, but in light of the always-mentioned tech talent shortage, can be a major road-block to filling a need. Instead of focusing your screening and interviewing energy on selecting the “Most Experienced Candidate,” consider which prospects stand out for their work in the following four categories.

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4 Tips To Market Yourself To An IT Interviewer

Whether your plans for 2016 include searching for new IT gigs, advancing your careerimages by acquiring additional IT certifications, or going after an Academy Award, a strong personal branding strategy is essential to launch you into the next season. While you may not be able to spend the millions of dollars on your personal branding campaign that Hollywood invests in the Oscars each year, you can gain valuable insight by seeking self-promotion and marketing tips from the film industry experts. Keeping these 4 tips in mind at your next IT interview will help you to improve upon and spread the word about your professional reputation by focusing on those unique attributes and soft skills which make you the right fit for a new gig.

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Why ESP IT Holds An Annual Holiday Party: 4 Tips

We know the holidays can be a challenging time for employees. So, while the ESP IT teamHoliday Party is busy wrapping-up both projects and gifts, we like to reward them for a year of hard work by throwing a holiday party. Not only does this event promote one of our core values, “have fun,” but it also increases employee engagement and satisfaction at a time when productivity can be at its lowest.

The traditional “office holiday party” sometimes gets a pretty bad rep, but when you approach the celebration with consideration and excitement, we’ve found it can lead to a yearly highlight. Check out these four easy tips we’ve cultivated to make our celebration a blast.

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Next Stop: Work-Life… Integration? 5 Tips for IT Pros

There’s been a recent trend in workplace “total wellness” initiatives to shift emphasis fromwork life work-life balance, to work-life integration – and we think IT pros everywhere should rejoice. Though the work-life balance camp is well intentioned, the movement still has professionals seeing “work” and “life” as two mutually exclusive, competitive facets. Instead, work-life integration sees “life” as an interaction with multiple domains,  work, which has resulted in increased productivity and greater personal satisfaction. For IT pros in particular, the shift comes with many benefits, ultimately resulting in the potential to strengthen your reputation as a consultant.

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Your “How To Get An IT Job” Checklist

checklistSometimes the best place to start is getting back to the basics.  It can be tempting to dive right into the job search and apply for every job remotely connected to your skill set but it’s important to pause and take a moment to assess what you want from a job.  Here are 5 checklist items to help you get a great job for you.

1.  Develop the job description for the job you want:

Take some time when you begin your job search to discover what exactly you’d like to be doing.  Which technologies do you want to use and how do you want to use them? A great way to do this is to look at previous jobs and pinpoint what you liked and didn’t like about each of these jobs.  This will give you a starting point to understand where your passions are in your industry.

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What’s the Big Deal about ‘Culture Fit’? Part 2

Interviewing for Culture Fit

ESP employees laughing in breakroom cafe

© 2013 ESP-IT. All Rights Reserved.

You may have begun to wonder lately if ‘culture fit’ is just the latest buzz word, or if it really is an important factor in your company’s success. A company’s culture is its values, practices, attitudes, and norms that resonate in the everyday behavior of its employees. Because ‘everyday behavior’ is ultimately what determines if goals are met, sales are made, or a project gets completed, having a team who is like-minded when it comes to culture could be the difference between a thriving company and a struggling one. The person who is the best culture fit for the company will be most likely to be successful, and in turn help the rest of your team thrive as well. Thus it’s essential that hiring managers incorporate culture fit evaluation when interviewing candidates. Just ask and observe.

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