9% Unemployment, And Startups Still Can’t Find People to Hire

Coming of age with Facebook may not be enough to prepare kids for a job in the digital economy.

Startups are finding it hard to get good people–even with 9.2 percent unemployment in New York City and the rest of the country. Every company The Observer writes about is hiring, it seems, and BuzzFeed president Jon Steinberg says that’s about right:

Despite all this unemployment, every startup I know needs to hire not only engineers, but also sales and operations team members.

The question “Which New York startups are hiring?” posted on the realtime Q-and-A site Quora had 87 answers, including but not limited to:

  • Etsy
  • Foursquare
  • Bit.ly
  • Tumblr
  • Gilt Groupe
  • Meetup
  • SecondMarket

BuzzFeed is hiring for six positions, ranging from Community Intern to Perl Developer.

So what’s the reason for the dearth of talent? Steinberg blames our schools:

A business person in 2011 needs to be able to dialogue with a Product team about the features customers need, and this business person needs to have an inkling of a sense as to how code is built and what can be shipped and how.

And yet, the case studies in business schools still involve cranberry farms, beer shipping, and Microsoft vs. Apple.

Hiring woes can be big trouble for a young company. But it just shows that the tech industry is still going gangbusters, even in the worst recession since the Great Depression.

ajeffries [at] observer.com | @adrjeffries 9% Unemployment, And Startups Still Can’t Find People to Hire