Delivering new opportunities for tech talent in Denver, Colorado

Delivering new opportunities for tech talent in Denver, Colorado
We are delighted to announce that mid-2017 we’ll be launching a new office in Denver, Colorado, USA. From this new base, Austin Fraser will be able to deliver highly skilled staffing services to the thriving digital and technology scene of Colorado. We’ll be establishing a team of consultants with expertise in specialist staffing within the tech and digital space. It’s our in-depth approach to understanding the markets, businesses and people we work with and how we develop deep long-lasting relationships that mean we’re able to work with employers and candidates to deliver exactly the right talent just when it’s needed.
Commenting, our USA Business manager, James Lafferty, tells us: “We’re genuinely excited by the opportunity that expanding the business to Denver presents. It’s a fantastic city that is rapidly becoming one of the key digital hubs in the US. With businesses like ComCast, Lockheed Martin, DISH Network, IBM and UPS all significant employers in the area and a fast growing number of start-ups, the possibilities for business and personal growth are fantastic.
“Denver is widely recognised as one of the top cities in America to work and live in right now. 300 days of sunshine and a great living standard make it a destination city where the expected influx over the next five years is a further 200,000+ people. Establishing a new base in Denver builds on the success we’ve had in Austin, Texas, where we’ve established a strong presence within the local community and been recognised by the Austin Business Journal as one of the best places to work, one of the Coolest Companies in Austin and on the 50 on Fire list – all within 24 months of starting up.”
Our CEO, Peter Hart explains more: “Austin Fraser is a brand with a strong heritage – we’ve been providing staffing solutions for ten years, and our staff are dedicated, hard-working trusted advisors to some of the world’s leading tech companies. We’re looking forward to becoming a key partner to the businesses in Denver and playing our part in shaping the digital economy of the area. We see this move to Denver as an important step in the growth of our business.”  

Steve Jobs‘ Inspirational Quotes: What recruiters can learn from the man behind Apple

Last Friday saw the release of ‘Steve Jobs’, the biographical film depicting the life of the legendary Apple founder himself. Whether you’re fans of Apple products or not, it’s difficult to argue with the impact that Steve Jobs had on the business world.  Jobs led the company to release many disruptive products and technologies that have changed the way we interact with the world today. In light of this, we wanted to pay homage, taking some of his most iconic quotes to see what lessons recruiters can learn from them:
“Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.”
Apple has long been known for its commitment to delivering high quality products that completely transform or revolutionise consumer experience. In Steve Jobs’ biography, written by Walter Isaacson, this attention to detail and focus upon quality became clear through his meticulous care about features — He even insisted the inside of his computers be beautiful!
As recruiters we work with people, not products. A great recruiter will focus on gaining a deep understanding of both the client and the candidate in order to form the perfect partnership between the two. A consultant too focused on short term financial reward will be blinkered, delivering an inferior service. This approach can only lead to failure. On the other hand, a consultant who forges long term relationships, delivers great customer service and truly consults with their clients and candidates will create sustainable, long term repeat business.
“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.”
Steve Jobs is credited with leading his teams in changing the face of the music industry through the introduction of the iPod and iTunes, the mobile phone industry with the release of the first iPhone and the digital media industry with the release of the iPad…to name just a few examples. Under Jobs’ watchful eye, Apple has innovated in a wealth of areas despite facing stiff competition from countless other companies.
Recruitment is an extremely competitive industry and just doing the same as everybody else won’t get you very far. What sets you apart? Don’t settle for being just another recruiter. Think about your market, your value proposition and make sure you deliver an experience to your clients and candidates that breaks that recruiter mould. Work smarter, not harder by understanding your the needs of your customers before you do anything else.
“Things don’t have to change the world to be important.”
Sometimes the little things can have a profound impact on somebody’s life, it’s just a question of perspective. Though Steve Jobs is widely recognised for his technological innovations, his unwavering attention to detail is what truly set him apart. Jobs was a key investor in Pixar during its early days and sat on the board in later years. He played a significant role in the design of one of their campus buildings, later named ‚The Steve Jobs Building‘. During this process, Steve obsessed over minor details, such as where the toilets should be placed and how atriums should be designed in order to maximise the chances of what he called, “serendipitous personal encounters”. Though seemingly minor details, they all contribute to a bigger picture — employee wellbeing and collaboration.
Whilst it’s important as a recruiter to make sure that you have a differentiating factor between you and the rest of the market, there are little things that you can do every day to make sure you’re the consultant of choice in your market. Treat everybody you deal with well and they’ll remember it. Whilst they may not be the ideal candidate for a role you’re looking for now, or a hiring manager that may not be hiring just yet, it doesn’t mean they won’t ever be. Invest time in the people you deal with every day and it’ll pay dividends in the long run. 
“Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith.”
Steve Jobs’ struggles were well documented. Having been diagnosed with rare form of pancreatic cancer in 2003, Jobs battled the illness until October 2011 when he sadly passed away. Despite this, he remained an inspirational leader at Apple until August 2011 when he resigned as CEO. Through these incredible odds, Steve Jobs showed that it’s still possible to do great things in the face of incredible adversity.
Resilience can come in all shapes and sizes. Steve Jobs demonstrated the ultimate resilience in battling with cancer the way he did whilst continuing to support the company he founded. Though we’d hope nobody ever has to experience struggles on this level, everybody faces challenges every day that sometimes seem insurmountable. Recruitment can be a tough job and sometimes things happen that are just beyond your control. People might not pick up the phone, perfect candidates could be rejected or placements could fall through. The trick is to keep driving towards that bigger goal; it’ll all pay off in the end.
“We’re just enthusiastic about what we do.”
Ultimately, a positive attitude and a bit of enthusiasm can go a long way. Everybody has their down days; it’s how you deal with them that counts. If a colleague has a negative attitude at work, perhaps you have somebody who isn’t truly inspired by what you’re doing as a business. Do you have the wrong person working for you? Without the right people in place, a business can never truly succeed. As recruiters, you get to play a fundamental role in helping businesses to build teams and ultimately, grow. 

#IndustryInsights: Jack Jiggens on Solutions Architecture

Solutions architecture is on the rise. According to IT Jobs Watch, permanent solutions architecture roles have seen a steady increase for the past decade. It’s a role that is often surrounded with a great deal of ambiguity and finding the right recruiter is vital to ensure you find the perfect role within this field.

The UK job market has seen an influx of start-ups and smaller enterprise organisations in recent years. 2015 is set to be another record breaking year with forecasts predicting more than 600,000 start-ups will be launching this year according to figures released earlier this year by the Centre for Entrepreneurs in The Telegraph. Many suggested that this surge in smaller start-up businesses might signal the end of the architectural job market, but in fact, the opposite has been the case (see the graph below).

So what is a Solution Architect?

In essence, the role of a Solution Architect is to convert the business’ requirements into an architecture and design that acts as a blueprint for the end solution. Although they aren’t expected to be quite as hands on with code as developers, they do need to clearly understand how it will fall in line with business objectives. A great Solution Architect will create an effective balance between highly detailed, tactical initiatives and broad, multi-faceted approaches or methodologies.
As a recruiter, I deal with hiring managers and candidates within the Java space on a daily basis. I’ve found that my engagement within the solutions architecture space has increased significantly, particularly within the last 12 months. Since doing so, I’ve found great success in placing Java Developers at a very high level.
The core focus of my approach is based on forging strong relationships with my clients and candidates. Each month, I work with a few select candidates to find them the perfect role at the right time for them.
Making the decision to change roles can be a big step. A true consultant will spend time getting a deep understanding of your expectations and requirements in order to make sure the process is as smooth as possible. By utilising my extensive network of candidates and clients, I pride myself on creating opportunities that they may not have otherwise found. 
If you’d like to find out what could be available within this area, I’d love to set up either a video or telephone call, or a 30-60 minute meeting in person, in order to establish a clearly defined outline of what you’re looking to achieve in your career.
Please take a look at my LinkedIn profile here for my recommendations and feedback.

5 top tips job seekers can learn from The Simpsons.

Even if you’re not a fan, it’s more than likely that you have caught an episode of The Simpsons in its 26 series run. Despite being a less than ordinary family, each character has been through their fair share of struggles, just like those searching for their next career move. With recent news revealing that the show will be coming to an end, we decided to take a trip down memory lane, looking at how job seekers can take advice from the iconic cartoon family.
1) Don’t settle.

It’s easy enough to get caught up in the excitement of receiving job offers or counter offers from your current employer. A moment of reflection, which Marge’s demure character always demonstrates in those sticky situations, could ensure that you make the best decision. Remember your skills, your reasons for leaving your current role and where you want to be.
2) Be an expert.

One of Homer’s biggest character flaws comes from his lack of knowledge, both in a professional and social context. Make sure you’re not saying ‘Doh!’ after losing out on your dream job by spending that extra time to learn as much as you can about your industry. No matter your age or experience, there’s always new information to add your existing knowledge.
3) Be sociable.

Even the Simpsons family have their close knit of people they can socialise with and the same thing should be the case when you’re searching for a new role. Especially if you’re changing careers, making a name for yourself either online or at events will only set you above your competition.
4) Be yourself.

One thing you can’t doubt is, none of the Simpsons family are afraid of being themselves. Even though they are less an ordinary, their bizarre personality traits are what make them loveable.
When companies sift through a large number of CVs, they will naturally be drawn to something more interesting or different. Never be afraid to inject some personality into your CV and cover letter, demonstrating that you’re more than your professional skills.
5) Never give up.

If you’re receiving a large amount of rejection emails or returning from unsuccessful interviews, the job search can be very disheartening. It’s always important to remember, just like Lisa did on many occasions, that believing in yourself means that you can achieve anything! Don’t give up, look at what you could do to improve your applications and the rewards will come later down the line.


Meet the Texas Team: Justin Weitzen

As part of our ‚Meet the Team‘ series, we’ve been introducing our Austin team over the last few weeks. This week, we wanted to introduce Justin Weitzen, Front End and User Interface technologies consultant at Austin Fraser in the Austin and Greater Texas area.
„As a company, Austin Fraser is the perfect match for me. I am now immersed in the Austin and Greater Texas market and have honed in my knowledge of Web and Digital to work exclusively as a Specialist Consultant. Our clients are on the cutting-edge of technology and application delivery and I couldn’t be more excited than to work in this market.
I became involved in the digital world after a fulfilling and worthwhile career in non-profit work. I was involved in helping talented individuals with disabilities find meaningful employment and wanted to take that experience into the digital industry. Employed by a consulting company in New York City, I found a great deal of success and growth in the last two years whilst working with some of the top talent Manhattan had to offer and some of the most prestigious companies in the Media industry.
With the ever-changing landscape of hot frameworks and libraries, keeping up with the latest trends and intimate market knowledge is more important now than ever before. Technology is what separates a good company from being a great one, so having the right professionals and resources working for you is critical. The biggest challenge is that the most talented professionals are in high-demand and things move so quickly that somebody newly available yesterday is often locked up in a year long project today.
What I most enjoy about my role as a consultant is really knowing and understanding both our clients and candidates, building trust, and delivering the best results. Each of our clients are unique, so are their projects, platforms, and environments. It’s essential to understand these subtleties and strengths when providing the correct resources so we don’t waste time and are able to provide clarity to our candidates. For our candidates, understanding their true passion, along with their technical strengths and interests help us to find them their dream jobs. One of the greatest experiences in my line of work is helping a client to make the correct hire and support a candidate in aligning themselves with the perfect organization. Here at Austin Fraser, we’re here to make this happen!“
Specialities include: JavaScript, HTML, XHTML, CSS, XML, AJAX, REST, Web Services, SASS, LESS, jQuery, Ruby on Rails, JavaScript Frameworks (Angular, Node, React, Backbone, Bootstrap, Ember, Express, JQuery, etc…)
Justin is a fantastic addition to the Texas team and we’re excited to have him on board!
Follow him on LinkedIn here


Ask your way to success: 6 questions to include at your next job interview.

Even though you may know how to ace the answer exchange, some parts of interview preparation are easily forgotten. At the end of most job interviews, it’s common for the ball to be thrown in the court of the candidate, with their chance to ask questions. In order to give them the impression that you really are interested in the company, it’s important to make the most out of this opportunity. With specialist industries such as IT or engineering, the types of questions you ask can make or break your chances of landing your dream role. Capture your future employer’s role by asking one of the following questions, and show that you are the perfect candidate.
What experiences and skills do you seek from the ideal candidate?
This question allows you to find out exactly what the interviewer and company are looking for, providing much more depth than the job description. If the interviewer mentions a skill or experience that you have, but haven’t included in your CV or through the answers you’ve given, now is the chance to let them know.
Why has the need for this vacancy arisen?
As much as this may seem obvious, it’s important to know whether this is a new role or whether you are replacing a previous employee. This will offer you a better insight into employee retention and whether there is much progression within the company.
What do you like about working here?
Especially important within permanent positions, this question allows you to connect to the interviewer on a more personal level. Offering you insights into the company culture and employee satisfaction, this question is still important to ask, even if you are interviewing with the owner of the company.
Are there any opportunities for training or further education?
Within the engineering and technology sectors, showing that you are willing to learn and grow will shine positivity on you as a candidate. Regardless of how senior the role may be, there are always things that you can learn and acknowledging this will set you above your competition.
Is there scope for progression within the company? 
This question should go hand-in-hand with any queries about training or further education. In a similar light, this shows that you want to be a valued asset within their business, highlighting your commitment and drive. The answer will also help you decide whether the career path they have planned matches with where you see yourself progressing to.
What is the next step in your hiring process?
Perfect for wrapping up the interview, this question shows that you are interested in the position and want to move forward. Knowing about any other interview stages, or how long to wait before hearing a response will also put you in a strong position moving forward.
At Austin Fraser, we provide a consultancy service to technical IT and engineering candidates seeking new opportunities. Whether you’re looking for a change of career and want to make sure you know the key questions to ask at your next interview then why not start by giving one of our specialists a call on 0118 959 6689.


An artificial future: Government officials investigate robotics in the workplace.

The worldwide digital revolution is never very far from news headlines. Bringing with it opportunities to progress technology as we know it today, all industries are now becoming affected by automation. These advancements, when applied to the workplace, have the potential to significantly change the face of business, as well as the personnel conducting it. A loss of jobs is inevitable as functions and services become redundant. Economists have estimated that around 35% of current jobs could be at risk, causing Government officials to investigate the impact of rapid developments within robotics.
Entitled the ‘Whitehall Inquiry,’ this investigation will look at the trades on the global market that are already using AI and how this could impact future workforces, as well as social environments. The Business Insider recently reported that IBM’s Watson is already being used to analyse millions of pages of medical texts and tens of thousands of cases, to assist in patient diagnoses. It is also common knowledge that robotic devices are being used during surgery.
With other technological breakthroughs such as driverless cars on the horizon, it’s important to remember that these open the door to a mass of new opportunities. A recent KPMG report claims that driverless cars alone will create 320,000 jobs in the UK, with 25,000 of those being in automotive manufacturing.
Former science minister David Willetts commented that ‘So perhaps taxi drivers will be replaced by technology, but 100 years ago there were people driving hansom cabs, we were using horse-drawn cabs to get around. As technology changes, so do the types of jobs. I think in the future there will be new jobs that nobody has yet conceived’.
As technology changes within all sectors, so will the impact on existing job functions. Although many jobs will become redundant in the short term, these new advancements will create a wealth of opportunity within emerging sectors. Businesses that remain open to these changes and are able to adapt their business models, recruitment strategy and continue to hire personnel with appropriate skill sets will be industry leaders in the digital transformation.