Stack OverflowFinding good small software companies
[+38] [13] Adam Haile
[2008-08-08 15:26:31]
[ career-development jobs ]

Anyone have any advice for finding good small software companies to work for? I've found that they rarely seem to advertise job openings, or basically will wait for someone to come to them...which I get since they are small are obviously wouldn't be that way if they were hiring a lot. I'm talking about some place a lot like Joel's FogCreek...there's just no way I'm moving to NYC. And specifically, does anyone know of any in the Carolina's?

[+14] [2008-08-08 18:18:44] sestocker [ACCEPTED]

I have a lot of good resources to help:

HiddenNetwork [1] (you can see jobs from any of the partner sites including TheDailyWtf [2])

Joel's Job Board [3]

Authentic Jobs [4]

37 Signals [5]

Krop [6]

There are others too. I might suggest seeking out a company you want to work and contacting them. Great companies hire the best talent always (not just when they are officially hiring). As for the Carolinas, I'm do not know any specific opportunities. Good luck with your search!

Disclosure: I work for Inedo [7] - the company behind HiddenNetwork.


[+4] [2008-09-21 21:04:09] Optimal Solutions

Have you considered creating your own?

[+3] [2008-08-15 06:20:27] go minimal

Guy Kawasaki [1] has a job board.

Freelance Switch [2] a blog about, you guessed it, Freelancing, has a job board.

Creative Hotlist [3] tends to have jobs from creative agencies who need technical people.

Startuply [4] lists jobs at start ups.


[+2] [2008-08-08 15:29:15] Greg Hurlman

Get involved in your local area - go to developer meetups, or start one if there aren't any nearby, watch the local newspapers for local business articles, keep an eye on local PR newswires... in can be hard to find them sometimes, but getting involved however you can, or just networking locally in general is a good way to go.

[+2] [2008-08-18 21:59:10] community_owned

There are several ways to find those small companies. But it isn't easy. I stumbled upon a great small company in the Green Bay WI area by mistake. I applied for a job on a web site of one of their affiliated companies. It was luck on my part. But looking back now, there are ways to find these small companies.

First and foremost, as others have mentioned, join a local user group. I can't stress this enough for developers and admins. When I moved states a few years ago, that was the first things I did. This is where I have met several small company owners that I would gladly work for if I was in the market. But making that connection is the important first step.

Next, start checking for the local entrepreneur blogs. Most small companies should also have a blog or two. Search for these. Figure out the type of company that they are. Hopefully you'll be able to find the blogs in your area and start identifying the smaller companies. Then you can start making the contacts needed to get a foot in the door.

Small companies, given the talent presented, will find a position for that person. It might not be that week, but it might be a few months down the line. But making those connections early on will help you down the line when you need to break away from the big corporation.

[+1] [2008-08-08 15:28:43] Karl Seguin
[+1] [2008-08-08 15:30:40] ZombieSheep

One idea would be to approach dev houses that have produced applications you love to use. Being able to entheuse about their product may provide a good "in".

In the UK, there are publications that list every company by industry sector (if you're in the UK, your local job centre or library will have access to these.) I'm afraid I don't know if this kind of thing exists outside the UK.

Unfortunately, there are very few ways to keep up with all the vacancies that are advertised, let alone those that aren't, because most jobs in the industry (again in the UK) tend to be advertised through recruitment agencies and they don't like letting the actual company name slip for conmpetitive reasons. I would probably say, therefore, that your best option would have to be word-of-mouth on sites like this or the DailyWTF job board.

EDIT :: For those in the UK (Sorry, OP!) the publications listed above are available through Business Link as well, IIRC. HTH

[+1] [2008-08-15 06:23:02] Jon Limjap

Being active in your local UG might be a good idea, because you get to meet either the owners of these small companies, or employees. They usually participate in UG events because it's a great way to get some free training. Furthermore, you can volunteer to speak in your UG, or do a talk, you get a lot of contacts that way, and maybe you could find your great small company somewhere.

[+1] [2008-10-19 19:13:43] Petteri Hietavirta

One way is to use Linked, Xing or similar professional network service and expand your contact network to the target area. Check point 10 at Ten Ways to Use LinkedIn [1]


[0] [2008-10-22 09:10:33] community_owned
[0] [2009-10-10 18:14:36] Timothy Carter

Now offered by stackoverflow [1], with potential to link to your SO activity, [2].


[0] [2008-09-02 09:18:49] kender

Reading developers' and, generally, people that work in your area of interest, blogs can serve you well too.

First, you start to know what's going on in the bussiness, second, you can find some job offers on their blogs, and also you can check other's comments and follow to their blogs :)

At this momemnt my Google Reader is full of such blogs from my area, I don't even have time to read them all, but I hope to see if some interesting opening might appear.

[0] [2008-09-21 19:38:46] Dustin Getz

@ Pawel [1], how do you discover all these local blogs? I've tried before and searching always seems to turn up noise. All the gems in my reader I found by accident.

[1] #39085

Mostly by accident, true;) There's a lot of noise, but sometimes someone you read/follow on twitter-like thing posts a link, then I follow it, if the article seems ok, i just add it to my google reader. Then if it sucks, I find out soon enough, but found some nice blogs this way. - kender