Best ways to find technical or semi-technical job openings?
August 5, 2016 2:46 PM   Subscribe

What sites, boards, and/or recruiters have you had a good experience with when looking for a new technical job?

I'm considering switching jobs from the small startup I'm working at (as a Python dev/systems engineer) to some other technical job.

I'm currently: looking on my alma mater's job board, looking on Python's job board, and working through my contacts list from undergrad. I've used LinkedIn in the past, but never found it to lead to many openings. I prefer posting my resume for recruiters/companies to view rather than blind applying to openings, but know I'll need to do both.

Generally I'm interested in programming, data analytics, and informatics if that narrows things down, but would also be open to other tech fields or something "tech adjacent" (e.g. working for a consulting/analyst firm, think tank, technology transfer group, or other job where I can get tossed at a problem and use my brain to solve it).

Where else should/could I be looking for openings or posting my resume? Any other suggestions that might be helpful for me?
posted by Chicoreus to Work & Money (15 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: i found my current (remote) engineering job using
posted by hollisimo at 3:13 PM on August 5, 2016 [1 favorite]

Dice, LinkedIn, Glassdoor, Craigslist (depending on area). Where are you located? Some of this is geography dependent.
posted by thewumpusisdead at 3:19 PM on August 5, 2016

Best answer: If you want to stay in startups, AngelList has a great job board.
posted by daniel striped tiger at 3:33 PM on August 5, 2016

I know a great head hunter in Berkeley who works with one candidate at a time. I would be happy to put you in touch.

You could do well getting onto job boards. The problem is that your resume is then allowed by some places to be trawled by recruiters who cover your desired companies but who may have no clue how to place you correctly with even a full job description. There are many angels out there but few distinct coaches. It may be better to get direct interview feedback from a skilled recruiter who may work with your school or at another large institution or company in your area who might cover your interest area. That kills two birds with one stone: telling you your real chances with your degree training and further goals, and seeing if it is possible to remain local if you choose. You can always turn down the job. Most companies have someone who acts as an internal recruiter but if you see it represented by a recruiter go at them hard to get yourself an interview. Ask to meet them at their office or for coffee. They pay! Promise you'll show for the interview and then request more interviews while you wait for feedback. You might get to see every company office in your state!

If you're confident enough to write this, you're definitely confident enough to look for the top twenty employers in your area and apply with a portfolio for a salaried position. Always start negotiation at salary if you're going in blind, planning for what you will need plus $4,000 for vacation. Ask for the manager, introduce yourself and your portfolio and what kind of project they can do for you and the training you'll provide so everyone could use it. It could make a great stream of freelance work and might be enough to start an agency or media company.
posted by parmanparman at 4:03 PM on August 5, 2016

The email list for the local python group has fairly regular posts about python positions that seem not on the standard boards, make sure you're on that kind of list.
posted by sammyo at 4:04 PM on August 5, 2016

Seconding AngelList if you are interested in smaller companies and startups. Also consider Stack Overflow. In my experience the quality of postings and interactions on Dice is very low. I have posted my resume on Monster in the past (last time was several years ago), and had a few quality interactions but also a lot of noise and spam.

As a candidate, I do not bother interacting with contingent recruiters unless we have a past relationship or they are referred to me by someone in my personal network. A good recruiter is a great resource—the problem is that so many contingent recruiters are terrible, from being merely inept to outright shady.
posted by 4rtemis at 4:10 PM on August 5, 2016 [1 favorite]

For tech transfer, you may want to browse around
posted by invisible ink at 6:17 PM on August 5, 2016

Just a thought, but you might be a good fit for a GIS/programmer position!
Python skills + your interest in data analysis and informatics = possible GIS track.

(GIS is Geographic Information Systems)

Python is the language of choice for many GIS tasks, and there are many many GIS jobs where Python is required or desired.

Some good boards are,,,, or for Fed jobs -

Good luck and feel free to memail me if you have any questions about GIS!
posted by tillei at 6:23 PM on August 5, 2016

I have had positive personal experiences with recruiting companies / headhunters, but I have also known people who got jerked around by them. (And, we're all familiar with the crappy way-off-base emails we get from random ones.)

I think the quality of the individual recruiter matters a lot more than the recruiting company itself.

One nice aspect is that it takes some of the pressure and stress out of the job hunt; their incentive is to get you placed (because that's what gets them paid), so you have someone else (a professional, even!) on your team. In my experience they even take on the responsibility of tailoring my resume to specific openings, which is something I have always found stressful and dislike doing. (In the past I didn't like them doing this, until I realized it means I don't have to.)

My major advice for dealing with these guys is 1) dump them if you don't feel like they're being awesome to you, and 2) make your pay, benefits, etc. expectations clear and feel very free to negotiate (and turn down insufficient offers).

If you want the specific company(s) I've had good luck with, feel free to memail.
posted by teatime at 1:47 AM on August 6, 2016 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I tend to look primarily at StackOverflow and LinkedIn. StackOverflow is better, but I've found some decent things to apply for on LinkedIn.

I've tended not to have a lot of luck on Dice. Checking again now, it looks like a lot of recruiting agencies, which I tend to avoid. (Maybe that's a mistake, I don't know, but they tend to feel like mystery meat jobs.)
posted by hoyland at 4:24 AM on August 6, 2016

i'm a freelance dev/admin and the most useful online resources for me are weworkremotely, github jobs, stackoverflow, local user groups boards/email and a very very low volume email list focused on a specific tech. the latter two have netted me my last three clients so i encourage you to dig up as many local (or local to where you want to be) resources as you can.

i have used recruiters in the past successfully. if things got dicey that would be the next strategy i would try if the above wasn't working.

make sure you keep connections with any quality people at your current startup, and try not to burn bridges. who you know not what you know is still the most effective job hunting tool, even in the supposed meritocracy of tech.
posted by lescour at 2:00 PM on August 6, 2016

Best answer: I'm currently unemployed and searching for a tech job. If you get accepted to I found it to be very helpful (I tried it a year ago)! Otherwise, I posted my resume on stackoverflow and linkedin and am working with 3 different recruiters who found me. They definitely try to rush interviewing forward but I've found them very helpful for turning up job postings I never would have found and getting me an initial phone call with companies.
posted by aaabbbccc at 2:02 PM on August 6, 2016

Best answer: I got a bunch of interviews and a couple of job offers, one of which I accepted, via
posted by ludwig_van at 11:52 AM on August 7, 2016

Response by poster: Wanted to post a few site reviews to help anyone that comes across this in the future, since my job search is complete! :)

GREAT SITES (would highly recommend for any tech job search):
+ AngelList is king it seems, they have the most extensive job lists and cover the most cities.
+ I was able to find a great local engineering position off of here.
+ I got about 30 matches over four weeks.
- You really have to do your own leg work. Companies won't go out of their way to message you first it seems (perhaps this is because of my location though). All of my matches, but one, were from indicating that I was interested in a company on their profile/job opening and writing a quick intro note to them.
+ The staff of this site are absolutely amazing. Their profile consultant helped me fix up my profile in a quick 15 minute phone call. (She thought of things I wouldn't even have considered!)
+ I got 4 matches over one two week batch, matches were high quality, screened well, and overall more "impressive" than matches from other sites.
+ They're willing to help you with your profile/job search on sites that AREN'T their own!
+ If you get accepted to hired, go for it. Having my profile looked over by them increased my hit rate on their own site and other job sites too.
- They have extensive opening lists in SF, NYC, and LA; if you're looking outside these cities, it might be more difficult. (This seems to be true of most sites except AngelList and LinkedIn.)
+ Not a job site, but really helped establish what I was "worth" salary wise given my experience
+ You can get super specific salary reports with skill sets, years of experience, and location.
+ Cost of living comparison tool is great.

OK SITES: (Two matches), Vettery (One match, staff was overly pushy)
posted by Chicoreus at 7:30 AM on October 6, 2016 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Also as a second follow-up: ended up estimating the total salary that I eventually negotiated up to, to within 1K. It's offer analyzer was super helpful and specifically told me where there might be room to negotiate more pay! This site gets super specific on how location, job field, and specific skills might correlate to a final salary.
posted by Chicoreus at 3:32 PM on October 17, 2016

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