The Need for Employees Who Think Like Hackers-Or Are Hackers

Susan Hall

Google stood out in a poll of young professionals as a site where they'd like to work, according to a survey by consultancy Universum, which helps companies improve their attractiveness to prospective employees.

 

It asked 10,306 young people-college graduates with one to eight years of work experience-to pick their top five choices for employment out of a list of 150 company names, according to The Wall Street Journal.

 

The numbers weren't large, though: 25 percent picked Google, nearly twice the number that picked No. 2 Apple. The rest of the top five were Walt Disney, the U.S. State Department and Amazon.com. The top write-in choice was Facebook, though it didn't fare that well overall.

 

The article says Google has carefully crafted its image to be attractive to potential employees. Government agencies, including the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Central Intelligence Agency, also placed in the top 10. Government agencies haven't laid off as many workers as the private sector and offer stable employment. But the federal government also has made a concerted effort to make federal jobs cool in the minds of young people.

 

The Journal article quotes Jon Picoult of brand consultant Watermark Consulting, saying:

Those government agencies can articulate a reason for being that gives employees a sense of purpose. For young people looking to make a difference in the world, they have a good story to tell.

That desire to make a difference can be an important point to remember about the so-called Generation Y or "millennials," as my colleague Ann All has written.

 

Though tech companies fared well in the rankings, the question remains whether these young professionals have the "right stuff" to be employed there. The article says that nine times more people in the class of 2008 majored in business as in computer science.



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