EMC’s Recruiting VP Offers Tips for Landing Jobs

Ever wonder what it takes to get a job at EMC? Well, wonder no more because we have the inside skinny from EMC’s VP of recruiting.

The storage maker is “aggressively” hiring tech talent as it focuses on Big Data, analytics and cloud computing. Last month, for example, EMC introduced 42 new products or services, as it moves away from conventional data center hardware and software to a hybrid cloud model.

Crunching the Numbers

EMC is looking to hire 500 people over the next three years at its recently opened global customer support center in Draper, Utah. But it’s also seeking help in other areas of the U.S., particularly in Massachusetts and California.

And on top of that, the company is also looking to add another 59 IT positions and 33 engineering jobs in the United States, based on openings on  jobs boards. Although EMC’s VP of recruiting Tom Murray wasn’t able to reveal the specific job openings, he did delve into the areas where EMC is hiring.

“One of our biggest needs is for data scientists,” Murray says. “There’s a huge need across technology for data science skills. That’s an area where we will be aggressively hiring, not just this year, but next year and moving forward. … Big Data is the real theme for the company right now.”

Hadoop skills are also in high demand at EMC, as well as other companies across the technology landscape.

“With data science and Hadoop, you really have to go after the experienced talent,” Murray says.

Insider’s Advice on Landing an EMC Job

Murray offered up a strategic roadmap for snagging an EMC job:

  • Network all you can with EMC employees and members of the recruiting staff. That’s easy to do on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.
  • Learn all you can about the company. Do your homework. “Be an expert on EMC when you walk in the door. Not only EMC, but do your homework on our competitors as well,” Murray said.
  • Show that you understand the company culture. EMC has acquired more than 70 companies in the past decade, encompassing security, hardware, software and services. That means it’s routinely bringing in new people and businesses.

Biggest mistake

“The biggest mistake is when [job candidates] walk out of the initial meeting, but the hiring manager doesn’t really know all your capabilities,” Murray said.

And contributions to open source communities and other projects you have going in your basement? That counts, too.

“I love that,” Murray said. ‘That just shows their passion for technology. If a person is so excited about technology that they’re doing it both inside and outside the office, you know they’re going to be great on the job.”

Advice for new grads

EMC likes to see students who have landed competitive tech internships. The storage giant offers internships and aggressively recruits for interns, as well as graduates.

Another piece of savvy advice is play the field. Get as much experience as you can early in your career. Look for places that have rotational programs, so you’re not pigeon-holed in one business unit, technology or skill.

“Our leadership development programs have global rotations and they’re worth their weight in gold to allow you to get global experience and global perspective,” Murray said.

Advice for those with 10+ years of experience

Get out of your comfort zone. Make sure you’re leveraging your current skills, but also make sure you’re staying up to date on the most recent technology.  Educate yourself. Don’t get stuck in one technology.

Cultural Fit?

Let’s say you have the skills EMC needs. But will you fit in?

“It’s a culture of collaboration and innovation. We’re professionally aggressive and very competitive [in the market.] We want to win,” Murray said.  “EMC is laser-focused on the competition.”

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4 Responses to “EMC’s Recruiting VP Offers Tips for Landing Jobs”

  1. Phrunes

    Having personally interviewed with EMC a few times over the past three years; I have to say that there is a serious disconnect between Murray’s strategic hiring objectives, and the business unit managers approach to things. In my experience; the hiring process for technical sales roles is somewhat behind the curve and is likely creating a disadvantage for the company. In practice it goes with related skills applies. What happens after that is unknown…I have the luxury of a network of associates inside EMC, but that only gets me past the gate. Once inside the walls, the candidate navigates to a hiring manager and a phone interview is scheduled. Here is where the fatal error occurs: more often than not, the hiring manager (in my experience) has only been exposed to one discipline – a vertical product or service – the candidate’s unique skills and value is never realized in the interview because the hiring manager has spent thier entire career in that one silo. The value of a candidates “soft skills”, albiet VERY VALUABLE and transferrable soft skills is never recognized. We operate in a business climate whereby a company cannot silo their staff, and each contributor needs to have a deep understanding of the entire domain to be successful over the long haul. Look to IBM or HP as the poster children for; why things should not be done the way they were in the past. I possess great strength in Business Process Outsourcing, TQM, and Process Management. I have worked with, and sold to most of the F1000 globally. My particular experience requires me to dive deep into HR, BPO, IT, Quality, Legal/Reg. Compliance & Contracts and many other areas (at the strategic level) and all valued in excess of 1M annually. Plus, I am really good at it. I do not however have any direct EMC experience. Not in selling a suite of EMC’s offerings or one of their many tools, or cloud services. Does this mean that as a candidate I can’t drive significant value to the organization? So, my recommendation: value and embrace obscure and highly relatable skillsets of qualified individuals, teach your front-line managers that there is a great big world out there and to recruit concepts, not functions. If you can do this…EMC will be catapulted into the realm of Innovator and leader – not merely a commoditized also-ran provider. – just my 10 cents worth.

  2. jcpopescu

    Tom Murray places a premium on projects one has going on in their basement ?

    Am I EVER calling out and calling Mr. Murray’s bluff.

    I’ve been indulging my technical prowess, creativity, curiosity, and enthusiasm through any number of simple through highly complex hardware, software, analog, digital, mixed signal, and proprietary design projects for YEARS if not DECADES.

    The response from third party recruiters and companies I apply to: I might as well have been wasting away and aging disgracefully. The attitude is “so what”, “it’s not the latest and greatest”, “we can’t use those skills” or just plain outright rudeness and condenscention.

    And Mr. Murray’s own words reflect that. In the opening he indulges the classic confusion of SKILL and TOOL. Hadoop, Big Data, etc are TOOLS. The SKILL, Mr. Murray, is the ability to use the TOOL. Something you don’t want to own and allowing someone sans the specific TOOL experience in EMC and allowing them to figure out how to use the TOOL is something Mr. Murray simply won’t allow, foster, encourage and would balk at.

    In short: I find the article laughable.

  3. Unless EMC has gotten rid of the the dead weight, most of the people there are ‘golden boys’. EMC only hires if you look the part or say the right things. As long as you stay with the in crowd, you will have a career at EMC. Once an illustrious place to thrive, it’s now a place where people can sit back and look forward to retirement. At on point there were some many people at EMC an no one knew what their job function or title was. These were the same people that were promoted to the hire ranks. If you notice most of the older EMC people have left and went to other organizations as well. In closing as you get closer to late 40s, EMC will find a way to get rid of you as well.