Whoaa‚¬a„¢s hiring in IT?

Newsroom 06/09/2010 | 13:25

This year has been particularly trying for all sectors of the economy and the IT sector has not escaped. While players face a serious decline in consumption, whether it is due to low demand from the private or public sector, recruitment has been halted and the salaries of workers in IT companies have been frozen or even cut, in some cases. Business Review talked to some players – multinationals or smaller local businesses on this market – who seem to be the exception to the rule. What these players have in common is: they have not slashed salaries and they are still recruiting to be able to fuel their expansion with new impetus.

Otilia Haraga


Microsoft Romania

Total number of employees: There are around 300 employees at Microsoft Romania at the moment for all the three lines of business. By the end of the fiscal year, the company aims to have a team of 350 people, so 50 new jobs will be up for grabs.

Recruitment:

Over the next period, Microsoft will employ around 50 people. “We expect a slight growth in recruitment on the market, with a peak in the technical support area, which is becoming more attractive to global IT players due to costs, but also due to the availability of resources at a level that is relatively acceptable,” Cosmin Bordea, country HR manager at Microsoft Romania, tells BR.

What Microsoft is looking for:

Girl power! This year the company wants to attract women among candidates, especially in the technical and support services. “We have noticed a certain reticence, often shaped by cultural and educational factors, of young women graduates and women in general to embrace a career in an IT company,” Adina Bigas, HR manager of GTSC Romania, tells BR.

At Microsoft Romania, more than 60 percent of the team comes from outside Bucharest, or from abroad: Germany, France, Poland, Sweden or the Netherlands. This is why soft skills have a lot to do with recruitment. “Soft skills criteria are the ones that filter and lead to the final decision. In Microsoft we have a commitment to diversity – culture, educational, skills, sex and age related,” says Bigas. Currently, there is an entire pool of positions that are open at Microsoft, from support services, core business, technical support, sales and marketing.

Sources of recruitment:

“For each of these positions we have a different sourcing process, depending on the domain and level of seniority of the position. To find the best, we are seeking to increase the diversity of the source and use as much as possible virtual relation environments,” says Bordea. Recruitment goes on throughout the year but the peak is now, the beginning of the fiscal year.

Recruitment difficulties:

“Romania is definitely not an easy market. Specialization isn’t exactly a phenomenon that is as widespread as in mature economies, but there is potential in Romania. I do not believe a faculty can supply specialists directly but I think the ramp-up time is at a relatively acceptable level,” says Bordea.

How much have salaries gone down:

“Salaries on the IT market have not decreased. However, I cannot say there has been a spectacular growth either. Many players have frozen salaries,” says Bordea. Microsoft is improving the salary package is gives its employees.

 

XEROX Romania

Total number of employees:

Xerox Romania has nearly 250 employees.

Recruitment:

“As a rule, we are hiring in the operational sector, and we estimate this trend will be maintained also next year, especially since the IT market is already on the up (which is confirmed also by market studies). As a result, we estimate that the labor force has a growth potential too,” Magdalena Ispas, HR manager Xerox Romania and the Moldova Republic, tells BR. ”It is difficult to estimate by how much the number of our employees will increase next year,” she says.

Sources of recruitment:

For entry-level positions, candidates are recruited from faculties. For specific positions, depending on requirements, specialists are recruited from other companies or Xerox promotes its own employees.

Recruitment difficulties:

“As a rule, it is hard for us to find specialists, taking into account the profile and experience that are needed – this is because Xerox runs its business on a niche market. In spite of all this, we manage to find candidates with a sound theoretical background and the willingness to be trained within the organization. This is also the reason why we go for university graduates for entry-level positions,” says Ispas.

Training of young graduates:

“Unlike previous years, more and more graduates have more extensive work experience when they graduate, which is a plus – exposure, experience, knowledge. For positions where we need specialists, we resort to the services of recruitment companies,” says Ispas.

How much have salaries gone down:

“The salaries in Xerox have not decreased and, following external Recruitment, we do not feel a significant decline in salaries on the market either,” says Ispas.

 

Power Net Consulting

Total number of employees:

At the moment, the team of Power Net Consulting numbers 27 people

Recruitment:

Three more people will be hired in the near future.

What Power Net Consulting looks for:

“The greatest needs lie in the sales sector where we need people with experience and with management capabilities,” Eduard Dimitriev, managing partner and GM of Power Net Consulting, tells BR.

Sources of recruitment:

Recruitment is carried out through direct selection by a call for applications on the company’s site but also though specialized firms in recruitment and head-hunting, and through recommendations.  

Recruitment difficulties:

“Lately, it has become more and more difficult to find people with a good professional training. Most likely because of the over-inflated salary offers in the past few years and because of the massive emigration of HR,” he says.

Training of young graduates:

“Young graduates generally have sound knowledge at theoretical level but we are interested in professional experience and management experience and these are hard to find in young graduates,” says Dimitriev.   

How much have salaries gone down:

“The salary decline on the IT market does not surpass in our view 15 percent on average. We have not cut salaries per se, we stuck to the same sums as in 2009,” says Dimitriev. However, the firm has cut back on perks such as company car or mobile phone subscription. An entry-level technician gets around EUR 500, a middle manager EUR 800 and top manager EUR 1,200-1,500.

 

BitDefender

Total number of employees:

BitDefender has over 400 specialists who work in its Romania offices but the company has teams also in the United States, Spain, Germany and Great Britain.

Recruitment:

In recent years, as a result of the growth in turnover, the number of open positions with BitDefender has also increased. Since the beginning of 2010, the company has hired 100 people. Currently, there are still 10 positions open in the technical and commercial departments. “It is too early to say what plans for employment we have for next year,” Carmen Buruiana, HR manager Romania of BitDefender, tells BR. 

What BitDefender looks for:

Recruitment has been uniformly spread among all departments – there were both technical positions and positions in sales and marketing.

Sources of recruitment:

The source of recruitment depends on the project. “There are projects where we are looking for people with specific skills, but we have also recruited interns from faculties as BitDefender is one of the main partners in the project Real Internships organized by the Association of IT&C Students and Professionals in Romania,” says Buruiana. The interns who worked at BitDefender were recruited following specific tests conceived by the BitDefender specialists. Some of them will continue to work for BitDefender.

How much have salaries gone down:

“Since most recruitment in our company is on a niche, we cannot talk about a decrease in salaries, as the skills we are looking for are narrow, and there are few specialists in the market with such skills at the standards that we demand,” says Buruiana.

 

TotalSoft

Total number of employees:

In Romania, TotalSoft has approximately 380 employees but there are also teams of specialists working in subsidiaries in Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia. 

Recruitment:

Over the past three years, TotalSoft has recruited approximately 100 specialists annually. “Recruitment has not ‘started’ at this moment, it is merely ‘continuing,’ because we are constantly doing it. Now, for instance, we have approximately 10 open positions,” Oana Cutui, HR manager of TotalSoft, tells BR. “At TotalSoft, we hope that over the next year our business on the long term will be within the expected parameters, in which case we will definitely keep the rate of employment of previous years.”

What TotalSoft looks for:

Totalsoft is looking for specialists in the software domain. This means experts such as programmers, consultants, technical support and business analysts. In the area of development platforms, TotalSoft is looking for knowledge of .Net, Java and Embedded. This year the company had approximately 20 students who did their internship there. “We want to keep many of them to integrate them as junior developers in various development departments,” says Cutui. “The personnel we recruited proves, in 80 percent of the cases, to have good experience and be well prepared.”

Sources of recruitment:

The most efficient sources of employment are recommendations from colleagues, after which come recruitment sites and companies.

Recruitment difficulties:

Although we should easily find people for most positions, since all domains are going through the crisis, specialists are rather hard to come by. I suspect the main reason is that at the moment many do not find this is the right moment to leave their job to which they are accustomed to and which they think is safe,” says Cutui.

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