Sunday, October 5

It's begun already: the cheap b*stards come racing out of the woodwork

Google Alerts popped yet another gem today. Hot off of craiglist: ".NET web Developer (Albany, NY)"

"An award winning web design and development firm in Albany is looking for a motivated Web Developer with a proven track record in developing high end websites and the portfolio to prove it."


"Required Experience and Skills:

> Solid Knowledge of Object-Oriented concepts.
> At least 2 years experience in a development/programming position, and 1 year experience with ASP / ASP.NET (C#).
> Must be able to take layered Photoshop designs and transform them into web sites
> Experience in .Net 2.0 development in compiled and non-compiled .Net applications
> HTML/CSS hand coding required
> Degrees and certifications are a plus but not a necessity
> Degrees and certifications are a plus but not a necessity
> This is a salaried position for a developer in the Albany area"


"Compensation: $30,000 to $35,000 plus benefits"

This is the kind of vulturous crap you saw for a year after 9/11. And this is in ALBANY -- we're not talking up in the mountains of the North Country, on the edge of the Adirondack Park, where I grew up, where I recognize there is a serious technology deficit in play. This is the capital of New York State for gosh sakes.

Two years experience OO, and 1 year ASP.NET/C#. Experience in .NET 2.0 (wait, what's a "non-compiled" .NET application? FAIL! Benefit of the doubt: maybe they mean static and dynamic .NET languages?) applications. Degrees and certifications are nice, but not a necessity. By the way, degrees and certifications are nice, but not a necessity. All that translates into AT LEAST $45,000USD + benefits -- BARE MINIMUM. Someone with these skills, and a college degree, should be in the $50s or $60s.

I know economies are cyclic ... and I know we're in a serious downturn. But when will these smalltime, smallminded employers finally realize, you get what you pay for? That offering this sort of spurious sum only leaves you with a dissatisfied, probably indebted, employee who is a) not going to work to their full potential and b) will be constantly seeking more gainful employment. And worse, c) possibly eventually looking to engage in theft against their employer, or employer's clients, in order to make ends meet?

What does it cost to find, vet, hire, train and do paperwork on an employee these days? Are you telling me that an extra $10k salary won't make up for itself quite quickly? If you've got annual turnover and even a $35k employee, $10k makes up for itself in a single year. (Assuming typical total turnover cost of 50% of employee salary.)

Also, it might help this particular employer to know: the Albany market for .NET people is HOT and TIGHT. Worst case, an economic slowdown is simply going to mean that several of the larger, established local .NET teams are finally going to be filling their open seats that we've been gapping on for two+ years now. You're not going to find bargain basement .NET people in Albany right now, period, at least not one who knows how to use a keyboard, or how to spell .NET.

UPDATE: 2007 national, state, Albany and NYC wage data for software roles:

us_nys_albany_nyc_software_salary_data_2007 - Get more Business Plans