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September 2006
Next month:
November 2006

Gopher Football Updates Coming Soon

In the next day I will be adding a bunch of posts covering the Gopher football games of recent weeks and the comments made by Coach Glen Mason. I have been seeking therapy and I think it is safe more for me to finally get these out of my mind.


So for those who have little interest in the topic I apologize for jamming up your RSS readers but at least I am doing it on a weekend.

Minnesota Recruiter And HR Blogs

Updated July 5, 2011

Click for my RSS Feed aggregator and specifically to see the list below.

The following Recruiter and HR related blogs are only a drop in the bucket of what has become the recruiter blogopshere but it does represent those of us who have been at it for a while and a diverse group of opinions and experiences.

The blogs are not ranked in any particular order other than the Minnesota blogs listed first.

Minnesota Recruiter, HR and Career blogs:

National Recruiter, HR and Career blogs:


Click   for most recent blog posts.

Stay in touch with me by clicking Blog Posts by RSS , Blog Posts by Email and/or the From The Desk Of Paul DeBettignies Newsletter

IT Jobs With NonProfits

The following new technology jobs with Twin Cities nonprofits have been added on the Volunteer Page:


Workstation Support Analyst I , Full Time Job


Desktop Support Analyst , Full Time Job


IT Development Team Supervisor , Full Time Job


IT Operations Team Supervisor , Full Time Job



Click weekly newsletter to receive the Wednesday message of nonprofit needs, IT jobs I am recruiting for, recruiting gigs, and most popular blog posts of the week.


If you are using a RSS Feed click Volunteer.

Minnesota Morning

Good morning and welcome to the first Minnesota Morning. Tomorrow my focus will be on Minnesota political races and some commentary on the ads that are being forced upon us.


Local Stuff:

-Dennis Smith at with Who’s Ditching Landline for Wireless?. Looks like Minneapolis is one of the leaders in going completely wireless.


The University of Minnesota Board of Regents has a 6-year student position coming up for grabs. The Minnesota Daily with a story on the job and how to get it, So you want to be a regent?


Recruiting Blogosphere:

-The Why of Local Recruiting 

I know that Jim’s post is about the market in St. Louis but many of the things he has been doing are things I want to do here in Minneapolis, just not enough hours in a day. Maybe one of my local blogging friends would like to get into this with me?


-how to survive searching for the technical job of your dreams

There are plenty of good companies to work for. So often I see candidates focus on one or two with the big name. They do not think about the dozens of good companies they would pass on the commute every day that could make them just as happy and offer better opportunities.


-Is Your Staffing Brand Stale?

Mine was and that is why I made the major change(s) I did.


-Corporate America embraces social networking

That’s too bad. I was enjoying their lack of participation.



-Big news from Senator Barak Obama on a potential run for the White House in 2008. As an independent (note that with the little i and not the big I) I can be excited about him as a leader.


-Tuesday I will have some links to recent local poll results, maybe they are biased and maybe not. All I know is my Democrat friends are cautiously optimistic (borderline giddy) and my Republican friends are scared (bordering on suicidal).



-Minnesota Wild

Damn, there went the idea of an undefeated season. 6-1 is a great way to start the season and the national sports folks are already talking about hockey in June in St. Paul. Now we need to see the results of Marian Gaborik’s groin injury. If memory serves me right he missed 17 some games last year with it.


-Minnesota Vikings

Whew, a week off and unlike last year no Love Boat Scandal. In fact, it was 100% quiet, maybe because it was too chilly to be on Lake Minnetonka. As for the Seattle game I actually watched most of it while I was in the office. The defense looked good, Brad Johnson looked good, and Chester Taylor continues to make me look good to my friends who I told to pick up in their fantasy football league.


-Gopher Hockey, Men

#7 Minnesota sweeps Ohio State to go 4-1 on the season. Friday night saw scoring from 13 players including nine freshmen who helped with 6 goals and 9 assists. Saturday the power play went 4-7.


-World Series

For the most part I am not paying attention. I do find it ironic that all of the big time sports guys from New York are sitting in cold Detroit instead of Yankee stadium. Serves them right for thinking they could buy a trophy.


But did Kenny Rogers cheat? I have been asking for two weeks if he was on performance enhancing drugs be cause he has been awesome. Maybe I should have asked if he using substance(s) on his hand, from ESPN Rogers was masterful, but did he cheat?

Attractive Nuisance Tour Tonight At The Fine Line

There are less than 35 general admission tickets left for this evenings 2006 Attractive Nuisance Tour. Tickets can now be purchased at the door.


This event raises money for two local charities, which help people who otherwise could not afford an attorney.


Doors open at the Fine Line Music Café at 5:00 pm. First band starts at 5:30 pm. All bands have at least one attorney in them.


This is the 4th annual event put on by Craig Sandok. Craig is a close friend dating back to our days at the University of Minnesota. He is a Search Consultant with the Esquire Group, a national legal search and consulting firm headquartered in Minneapolis.


This is the fourth year of ANT but my first time being able to attend. After a few very long weeks I am looking forward to an evening out, even if it is with a bunch of legal folks.

Updates To MN Headhunter

Geez, I just had the post announcing Minnesota Morning and I already have a couple of email wondering what else was coming.


Other changes that have or will be made are:


-“Jobs” category has been changed to IT Jobs, Minnesota And US


-3 TypeLists will be removed from the main page:

Recruiting Blogs

Business And Technology Blogs

Twin Cities Blogs


They will be replaced with categories:

Blogs, Business

Blogs, Minneapolis and St. Paul

Blogs, Recruiting

Blogs, Technology


The reason for this is the lists on the column on the right are already long and there are more to add. Also, it is quicker to add/delete them in a post within a category than a TypePad list.


While this does add one more click for a reader to do in order see the listed blogs I do not see this as a barrier or less click throughs will happen.


I will be listing the blogs focusing on Minnesota at the top of each list. The Minneapolis and St. Paul category will be those not of business, recruiting, or technology focus.


-I have already moved the November 2006 category, sort of a journal on how I went through the process of starting what has become Nerd Search, into MN Headhunter Info.


-Next week I will kick off “Ten Minutes With”


-Adding more links of networking and IT user groups. Not sure if that will be a category or list.


All of that should be finished by November 1st. I already have a couple of things to add in November including an events calendar.

Introducing Minnesota Morning

Over the coming days and into next week I am making some minor content changes to the blog. For starters, a new regular post called Minnesota Morning.


Minnesota Morning (which may not actually be posted before noon some days, I am a night owl) will be a combination of smaller posts. It will include links from the recruiting blogosphere, local news links I have come across that may not be business related but interesting to readers, links to articles I will write about in coming days but wanted to get the original content out right away, and whatever else is on my mind.


This may include short thoughts on sports, politics, and the weather.


You will note that I have taken out the categories on the right called “political rant”, “sports”,

“weekend talk”, and “recruiting blogosphere”. Those entries have already been merged into Minnesota Morning. The removed categories are things I occasionally would like to talk about as they relate to Minnesota or my personal interests but the time it takes to do a post made doing them inconsistent.


As I start writing this next week your feedback on what you would like to see more or less of is welcome.

Oops, Took Down My Own Site

This has not been one of my brightest moments. On Tuesday I closed my e-Strategies Group account with VISI. Not knowing that when I created the MN Headhunter account I did not create it as a personal account but as part of e-strategies.


So in the process I deleted the MN Headhunter blog and email accounts.


I appreciate the many, many people who have been urgently trying to reach me to let me know that the blog was down or that their email had bounced.


Many thanks to the folks at VISI for helping me get back online. Once again they validated all the good things I have been saying about them.


Tracking Your Job Search

When I am speaking with someone about their job search the question I love to ask is this, “Who have you sent your resume to and when?”


90%+ of the time I get a blank stare or if a phone conversation, that long awkward pause.


In my head I am thinking, “What do you mean you don’t know?” but I try not to let it out.


To do en effective job search you need to be able to track some basic things like:

-Company you sent the resume to, to whom, date and time

-Contact information of the person sent to including name, phone number, and email address

-Logging email and phone calls.

-Scheduling follow-up actions.


There are four options that I like best:

-Create a hard copy form to fill out

-Create an Excel spreadsheet with specific fields to enter information

-Create an actual database of some sort, Access for example

-Use software that specializes in this. The Job Tracker and Jibber Jobber are the best I have found so far.


For ideas on fields to create you can see this Sample Job Lead Follow-Up Log.


Next week I will profile The Job Tracker and Jibber Jobber.


I highly recommend both of the products not only for a current job search but to save and store information for future searches. To recreate the wheel before each search is time consuming.


It does not matter how many jobs you apply for, networking connections made, or people you speak with if you are not keeping track of when to do what activities.

My Experiment With MySpace and Facebook

This is why I enjoy working for myself as I can take some time out of the normal workday (or when I am cannot sleep at night) to try something new.


With the recent (controversial) opening of Facebook I created a profile in the Minneapolis/St. Paul network. As an alum of the University of Minnesota I already could have created an account but I could not think of a reason to do so. That and the least thing I wanted to do was know any more about the personal lives of some of the students I interact with. Sometimes too much information is not a good thing and in many cases I already know too much.


The tipping point for me was the other recent (controversial) change to Facebook, the News Feed. For those not familiar, a news feed is created, much like an RSS feed, that lets you know what your friends are up to.

In the notes section of Facebook you can create notes on what you are doing and you can also import RSS feeds from other sites.


Like blogs. Like the MN Headhunter blog.


This is a great tie in for the students who have attended my seminars on job search and networking on campus. Now they will get the MN Headhunter feed on their News Feed. I have already seen an increase in traffic from the U of M.


I have not and doubt I will add myself to the U of M network. The students can invite me as they wish and I do not want anyone to think I am some creepy old guy.


I do think this will be great tool for me to keep track of those I have met over the years and to stay connected with them in years to come.


If you are using Facebook and would like to be my friend, assuming we already are, this is the link to MN Headhunter.


Now to the MySpace experiment. I started my personal profile as MN Headhunter earlier this spring. I have not used it that much other than to network off the site with tech professionals. In other words, I have no friends.


But I am going to change that. Starting next week I am going to be more active. I have seen that some of the people I know on a professional level have a page and I will start connecting with them.


My other MySpace experiment is I have just created a group called Minnesota Techies Networking. The idea being a group where tech professionals in the Minneapolis and St. Paul area using MySpace can network with each other.


Maybe it will work and maybe not but I have grown tired of reading posts and articles by people who “talk” about the use of these sites but not had any experience with it. An opinion is great but I prefer actual knowledge.


Time to find out…

Confession Of A Job Board Networker

I had a meeting with a new client this week. One of the questions I was asked (seems like this is asked every time) is do I use the job boards to recruit candidates. The short and easy answer is no I do not. But that is not the whole answer and it reminded me of an article on ERE a few days ago What do you really use Job Boards for?.


The whole answer is this; no I do not recruit people who post their resume online today. I leave that to my clients.


A client should not pay me a fee for someone they can find on their own. Saying that, I do crawl the job boards and here is why…


-Most people post their resume when they want a job. Usually they want it right now. A person who posted their resume two years ago and got a job likely pulled their resume from the site. They are now a networking source and could be a passive candidate.


-Remember that candidate you saw a year or more ago that was just not quite experienced enough? I bet they are now.


-If you are recruiting web developers at the moment but know that business analysts are on your radar screen in 60 days, reach out to those that have posted their BA resume. Will they be available in 60 days? Doubtful although they may not have found the right fit and be available after all. Will they be a networking source in 60 days? Absolutely. Build a relationship with these folks now so when they make a change 2-3 years from now they remember who you are.


So how do you go about staying in touch with these people? Create a newsletter or other sort of email list. Send an email once a quarter or twice a year. However many times it takes for the receivers to remember who you are.


Using a newsletter service allows you to know how many people have viewed the message, how many forwarded it on, manages bounced email addresses, and allows the receiver to update their information.


I use Constant Contact. There are others but this has worked best for me.


This type of recruiting and networking takes a lot of time but you already paid thousands of dollars for your subscription, why not use it to its full potential?


One last point to this, I have found that it is easier to go back and find those that have posted their resume before and generate leads than being one of four search firms, three consulting firms, and 5 companies all trying to recruit the same person hours after they posted their resume online.

Twin Cities IT Consultants, Nerd Search Would Like To Speak With You

I am looking to speak with IT professionals interested in working in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul as technology consultants. This can be done as a full time employee, contract or project basis. W2, 1099, or corp to corp.


A competitive hourly/salary, bonus and incentive programs, and a great benefit package are available.


All positions are in the Twin Cities. At this time I am only accepting candidates who are located in or near Minneapolis and St. Paul (we are not relocating) and who do not require sponsorship for employment.


If interested in speaking about these and other opportunities send your resume to me at I will then respond with an email to coordinate a time when we can speak.


If you are on a contract at the moment get in touch with me anyway. I do a lot of long term planning and I know that you would like to move from one gig to the next. So if you are 3 weeks or 6 months from availability I still want to speak with you.


If you know of someone who may be interested in a consulting position Nerd Search has a referral program that you can find more about here, Nerd Search Referral Program.


In the next day or so I will be posting job descriptions on the Nerd Search Jobs Page but for now here is the general need:


Business Analysts
Experienced in requirements development for application development and package selection projects including Use Case development experience. Additional desired skills include working knowledge of RUP, experience with logical data modeling, RFP writing, user acceptance test case development, and ability to conduct user acceptance testing.


Microsoft Developers
Operating Systems Experience with Windows .Net, and databases MS SQL Server, MS Access, and Oracle. AND / OR demonstrated ability in ASP (non.Net) development using Visual Studio 6, as well as knowledge of Visual Basic or C++. Capacity to utilize Object Oriented Design and Development (OOD), Use Cases, UML, and RUP.


Project Managers
Ability to manage software development and package selection projects for CRM Effectiveness, ERP, Financial/Accounting, or Data Warehousing projects. PMP certification, Six Sigma certification, and 5+ years experience managing projects of ranging sizes.


Java Developers
Working knowledge of Struts, EJBs, JSPs, JDBC, XML/XSL, and HTML. Must demonstrate J2EE industry standards and protocols, object modeling and Use Case abilities, as well as being experience in Java, SQL, C/C++, Shell Scripts, Unix, Linux, Windows, MS SQL Server, and Oracle.


Quality Assurance Analysts
Shows ability using TestDirector, WinRunner, LoadRunner, RUP, and defect tracking tools. Language experience in Shell Scripts, PERL, and SQL. Knowledge of operating systems Windows, Unix, and Linux and databases such as MS SQL Server, MS Access, and Oracle.


Data Architects
Familiar with and able to implement leading database, modeling, ETL, and delivery tools within the business intelligence market. Skilled in data analysis, best practices, data mitigation, enterprise data workshop, and data size estimations.

Nerd Search Referral Program

After seeing this For a good time, call Harry Joiner at Marketing Headhunter I realized that when we wrote content for this new blog design I did not include the referral program. I will get that added soon.


For the short run here it is without the legal language:


If a referral is made to me directly (as in you made an introduction) or indirectly (you anonymously gave me an email address, name and phone number) if I ever place that person in a permanent full time job you get $1,000.


Better yet, if the person you refer me to refer me to someone else who is placed in a permanent full time job you get $250.


This only goes two levels deep. Again, you refer me a candidate and they refer me to a candidate, you get $250.


If you give me a referral that ends up being paid hourly you get $1 an hour for their continual employment.


And I hold that for life! Yep, life. If you refer me to someone and I place them three or five years down the road you get the referral.


I have been doing the referral on a 1099 basis but seeing what Harry is doing I will look into that.


Some people look at this as a way to “buy” people. I do not see it that way. You can refer people to any recruiter and I appreciate you sending them to me. Besides in most cases people do direct and lengthy introductions and certainly that time is worth something.


Back to that lifetime promise.


In late 1999 I was referred to a woman named Elizabeth by a guy I had been networking with, George. Elizabeth was placed in early 2000 and I gladly sent George a thank you letter with a check in it. Elizabeth referred a friend of hers to me who was also placed. Later that year George moved to Seattle without me knowing about it.


In 2003 George contacted me and was relocating himself back to Minneapolis and was wondering if I could chat with him about the marketplace. “Absolutely” I said, but I also need your address. I made sure we spoke after he received the second letter and he was very shocked.


He asked why I would remember such a thing and I said because you trusted me with a friend of yours and I appreciate that.

Minneapolis And St. Paul Job And Pay Growth, More Good News For IT

I had a client ask me to dig up some statistics on job growth and average salaries for information technology professionals. The Minnesota Department Employment and Economic Development has this web site High Growth/High Pay Occupations with up to date (2006) median annual salaries ranked by job growth.


Occupation, Estimated 2002 Employment, 2002-2012 Net Growth, 2006 Median Annual Salary:


Total, All Occupations 1,721,521 +14.9% $37,192.70

1) Postsecondary Teachers, All Other 15,106 +50.6% $50,848.60

2) Network Systems and Data Communications Analysts   3,409 +50.3% $72,013.07

3) Computer Software Engineers, Systems Software   4,363 +47.4% $81,079.74

4) Computer Software Engineers, Applications   9,685 +41.4% $78,328.28

5) Database Administrators   1,904 +41.3%  $69,949.47

6) Network and Computer Systems Administrators   3,693 +36.9% $63,797.75

9) Computer Systems Analysts   8,317 +35.0% $69,785.99

11) Computer and Information Systems Managers   5,646 +33.9% $104,755.69

14) Computer Specialists, All Other 8,433 +32.1% $65,572.43

17) Computer Support Specialists   9,180 +30.7% $45,720.97


Hmm, seems to me this would be a good time to be a techie in the Twin Cities.