How Valve’s Culture Sets It Apart

Posted In Looking in Tech
Like any other game company, Steam’s creator Valve faced challenges in recruiting talent during its early days. As a solution, CEO and Co-Founder Gabe Newell decided to focus on building a strong culture with unique practices. Recently, Newell told the Washington Post that his Bellevue, Wash., company has created a culture of management systems without managers, unlimited vacation and sick time, allowing workers to take on more than one role, and embracing out-of-the-box thinking. The strategy has paid off. Valve’s… continue…

Buffer Shares Staff Salaries in Bid for ‘Radical Transparency’

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Practicing what Joel Gascoigne, founder and CEO of Buffer, calls “radical transparency,” the company has made all its staff salaries public. In fact, the company, which enables clients to schedule posts for Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites, lists “Default to Transparency” as one of its nine core values. “In Silicon Valley, there’s a culture of people jumping from one place to the next,” Gascoigne told 99U. “That’s why we focus on culture. Doing it this way means we… continue…

Tech’s Unlimited Vacation Time a Scam?

Posted In Looking in Tech
With the holidays coming to a close, chances are a number of IT professionals are leaving unused vacation time on the table. A recent survey found working Americans will likely leave an average of 12 paid vacation days unused as they exit 2013 – a 30 percent increase from the year before, according to’s third annual American Travel Behavior survey. These survey results bring into question the true value of the unlimited vacation time perk that companies are increasingly… continue…

Why More IT Pros Say ‘No Thanks’ to Becoming CIO

Posted In Looking in Tech
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Want to be a CIO? You’re in the minority. Long hours, lack of prestige and company politics have more IT pros saying they don’t aspire to become CIO, according to a Computerworld survey. Only 32 percent of the 489 IT professionals polled say they are still gunning for the CIO title, while 55 percent say “no thanks.” “Being a CIO doesn’t offer the opportunity to do the cool stuff that IT people like so much to do. It’s about meetings… continue…

Will Personal Loans Be a New Perk for Tech Workers?

Posted In Looking in Tech
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Could employee loans be the next big perk? Peer-to-peer lending marketplace Lending Club has reportedly been wooing the likes of Google to offer such a service. “The program we’re putting in place gives the ability for large companies with lots of employees to make loans to their employees and use their treasury reserves, on which they are earning like 1 or 2 percent, and put them to work,” Lending Club CEO Renaud Laplanche said in an interview with AllThingsD. “At… continue…

Software Engineers Earn More at Smaller Companies

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Amid the frenzy to hire top software engineers, the top names don’t necessarily pay the top salaries, according to a new report from Glassdoor. The report is based on the self-reported salary data of more than 33,000 software engineers. Juniper Networks leads its list at $159,990 in base pay, with LinkedIn ($136,427), Yahoo ($130,312), Google ($127,143) and Twitter ($124,863) rounding out the top five. But Walmart, at No. 8 ($122,110), comes in ahead of reported salaries at Facebook, eBay, Amazon… continue…

Software, Data Skills Key to Higher Pay

Posted In Looking in Tech
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Though few are on par with Twitter’s $10 million engineer, pay is on the upswing for IT occupations, according to a new Robert Half Technology salary survey. The report suggests that while salaries will rise an average of 3.7 percent in 2014 across accounting/finance, technology, legal, creative and administrative jobs, the positions with the highest pay jumps will be engineering, software development and programming. For instance, mobile applications developers and software developers will see increases of nearly 8 percent. The… continue…

Why Not All Parental Leaves Are Made the Same

Posted In Looking in Tech
One tool companies use in their quest to attract and retain tech professionals is family leave: providing paid time off for new mothers and fathers – whether they’re having children by birth or through adoption – to recover from medical issues and get acquainted with the new member of their family. But not all paid leaves are created equal. Under the Family and Medical Leave Act, employees are allowed to take up to 12 weeks off without pay for the… continue…

Does Facebook Get Credit for San Mateo Pay Surge?

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Although Silicon Valley’s San Mateo County ranks fifth among the nation’s largest 334 counties when it comes to average weekly wages, it posted the largest jump in first quarter salary over the previous year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Home to tech names like Oracle, Electronic Arts and Facebook, the county posted a 14.8 percent increase in average weekly wages during the first quarter. That’s far higher than the national average increase, which was a scant 0.6 percent… continue…

Top Wage Earners Hold Computer-Related Degrees

Posted In Looking in Tech
Eight computer-related degrees rank among the top 30 majors for salary potential, according to a recently released report from salary researcher PayScale. Engineering degrees of all stripes lead the way, with computer engineering ranking No. 6 and computer science No. 8. Here’s how the IT-related degrees fared: No. 6. Computer engineering: Starting salary -$65,300; Mid-career salary – $106,000. No. 8. Computer science: Starting salary – $59,800; Mid-career salary – $102,000. No. 12. Software engineering: Starting salary – $60,500; Mid-career salary – $99,300. No.… continue…