Google leads US tech sector hiring surge

A hiring surge in the US technology sector could trigger a rise in Australian entrepreneurs pitching to tech giants such as Google.


According to the California Economic Development Department, California added nearly 100,000 new jobs in February, driven by a surge in demand in the technology sector.


Top tech companies are competing fiercely for engineers, designers, computer scientists, data crunchers and other workers with specialised technical skills.


But the hiring frenzy has also begun to reach workers with other kinds of skills, and competition is particularly fierce among internet and social media companies.


Search giant Google announced in January that 2011 will be its biggest ever hiring year, while YouTube has also said it will lift hiring by more than 30%.


Alan Eustace, Google’s senior vice president of engineering and research, said in a statement the company is looking for “top talent” across the board and around the globe.


“We’ll hire as many smart, creative people as we can to tackle some of the toughest challenges in computer science, like building a web-based operating system from scratch, instantly searching an index of more than 100 million gigabytes and even developing cars that can drive themselves,” Eustace said.


“There’s something at Google for everyone – from geo to enterprise to video – with most of the work done in small teams, effectively working as start-ups.”


Google recently acquired a host of tech companies including SayNow, fflick and eBook Technologies.


In 2008, Google acquired tech start-up Omnisio, co-founded by Australian entrepreneur Ryan Junee. Omnisio enables users to annotate and share videos from any website.


Junee says he and his business partners started the company in Silicon Valley because there is “no better place in the world” to start a tech company.


“There is a wealth of support there from other entrepreneurs, investors, lawyers, PR firms, etc, all well versed in start-up best practices,” Junee told StartupSmart earlier this year.


After completing a three-month training program with US business incubator Y Combinator, Junee and his partners attracted the interest of Google at a “demo” day.


“After the demo day, we were asked to come and demo our technology to engineers and product managers at Google,” Junee says.


“After they bought the business, I spent time there as a product manager. But I left at the end of last year because I missed the excitement of being involved in a start-up.”


As Google seeks to ramp up its recruitment, it faces competition from Silicon Valley rivals such as Facebook, which has announced it too will be hiring in all areas of the company throughout 2011.


Meanwhile Twitter, based in San Francisco, plans to grow its current workforce of 400 to 3,000 by 2013, while social gaming company Zynga – which has more than 1,500 employees – expects to double that number in the next year.


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