Leslie Stevens-Huffman

Leslie Stevens-Huffman is a business and careers writer based in Southern California. She has more than 20 years’ experience in the staffing industry and has been writing articles, blog posts and moderating the Dice Discussion Board since 2006. In addition to her writing pursuits, Leslie is a part-time instructor for UC Irvine Extension and a member of the Human Capital Institute’s Contract Talent Advisory Board. Leslie has a bachelor’s degree in English and Journalism from the University of Southern California.

6 Interview Questions for Systems Administrators

Posted In Looking in Tech
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The role of the systems administrator is strong and the job’s outlook is healthy, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicting growth of about 11.7 percent between 2012 and 2022. That should create approximately 42,900 new positions. What makes one sys admin stand out from others? Curiousity, according to “Ski” Kacoroski, who services more than 3,000 users as assistant systems administrator for the Northshore School District in Bothell, Wash. He also serves as vice president for LOPSA, the League of… continue…

Don’t Share Performance Reviews With an Interviewer

Posted In Looking in Tech
Performance Review
Tip of the Day It doesn’t happen very often, but every once in a while a prospective employer will ask to see a copy of your performance review. You should politely decline. The information in your review is proprietary and giving a prospective boss access to the document allows him to scrutinize every task you performed and read you manager’s subjective comments. That’s more information than they need. In addition, performance plans are controlled documents because they often detail a… continue…

10 Simple Ways to Screw Up Your Cover Letter

Posted In Looking in Tech
Grammar Mistakes
Cover letters are often your first mode of contact with an employer, so obviously you want them to be perfect. And, as in everything else, you get to perfect by sweating the details. Sometimes it’s a simple thing that can throw a cover letter off-track. With that in mind, we present this list of mistakes that can sink your chances before you even get started. Generic Salutation: Don’t even bother sending a cover letter if it starts with “To Whom… continue…

Do Your Research Before Beginning Salary Negotiations

Posted In Looking in Tech
Roll of Dollars
Tip of the Day Once you’re offered a new job, it’s time to negotiate your salary, time off and other benefits. You can’t do this in a vacuum. As in every other part of the job-hunting process, the more you know about the employer and its business, the better chance you have of getting what you want. Before you begin discussing salary, determine a preliminary compensation range that’s appropriate for someone with your skills and experience. You can find the… continue…

Make Your Cover Letter and Resume a Real Package

Posted In Looking in Tech
Business Stationery
Tip of the Day Consistency between your resume and cover letter demonstrates your attention to detail and thoroughness. Plus, giving reviewers a coordinated package helps you convey the sense of a uniform message. That’s subtle, but it can have an impact. From the font to layout to headers, you want to present complementary documents that were obviously thoughtfully crafted by the same author. It doesn’t matter whether you attach them as Word documents or PDFs, or paste plain-text versions into… continue…

Take the Initiative and Keep Your Manager Informed

Posted In Looking in Tech
Meeting With Manager
Tip of the Day If your boss is constantly lurking by your desk, trying to stay on top of what’s going on, it might be time to change the way you interact. Because they’re unsure of which employees require more oversight than others, managers new to their roles often supervise subordinates closely. In the absence of trust, they tend to manage everyone carefully, which can grate on the nerves of experienced workers. Since relationships are a two-way street, changing the… continue…

Interview Questions for Agile Developers

Agile
Developers who are familiar with Agile have seen their stock rise. That’s because CIOs view the framework as a way to keep up with the ever-evolving needs of owners and a welcome alternative to traditional methodologies. The approach fosters incremental software development by replacing silos with svelte cross-functional teams and emphasizing communication and collaboration over documentation and meetings. Daryl Kulak, a vice president at consulting firm Pillar Technology Group, likes to mirror Agile’s collaborative spirit during interviews. Here are some… continue…

How to Avoid Making the Worst Possible Interview Mistake

Posted In Looking in Tech
Covering Face Mistake
It would seem basic: Before you go in for an interview, you research the employer, its business, its culture—pretty much everything you can think of. It would seem basic, but apparently it’s not. When they sit down, a surprising number of candidates aren’t prepared, and stumble into holes that prove fatal to their hopes of landing the job. By the time the hiring manager’s decided to talk to you, they’ve already decided you have the technical skills to do the… continue…

Here’s the One Thing You MUST Say During an Interview

Posted In Looking in Tech
Skeptical Man
By the time hiring managers ask you in for an interview, they’ve already decided you’ve got the technical skills to do the job. Their purpose in meeting you is to decide whether you’ll fit with the team, gauge your soft skills and in general measure your level of enthusiasm for the position. This last point is among the most critical. If there’s one thing you absolutely must get across during your meeting, it’s why you want the job. “Skills can… continue…

Interview Questions for Novice Software Testers

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If you’re interested in software testing, you don’t need robust tech skills so much as a heavy dose of tenacity and a strong service mentality. “It’s still a young profession so there are a lot of misconceptions about the role,” says Ben Yaroch, President of the Association for Software Testing and Senior Software Quality Engineer for ExactTarget, an Indianapolis-based digital marketing platform. “Most applicants have had some exposure to testing but they haven’t done it full time,” he says. “I… continue…