|Client||Position||Starting date||Infragistics||Team Leader||September ‘10|
5+ years experience in software architecture and design, strong leadership skills, managerial experience. Knowledge of SOA, C#, ASP.NET, Silverlight and/or WPF, BizTalk, SharePoint, MS Commerce Server
By the end of 2009 Infragistics took the decision to expand their operations. The gist of this expansion was to establish a new software development team, quite different from the existing teams, to take on entirely different projects. This was to be the second software development team of Infragistics, further to the more than 50 Microsoft developers that were already working in the Sofia office of the company.
Looking for a team leader to head a new business operation is a pretty common assignment in IT companies. What made this particular job profile unique, however, was the mix of requirements. On one hand, the ideal candidate would have strong strategic insight in software architecture; on the other hand, s/he needed to have a very impressive portfolio in software design. Mastery of a wide scope of technologies was essential for the success of the position: SOA, C#, ASP.NET, Silverlight and/or WPF, BizTalk, SharePoint, MS Commerce Server. To make matters even more complicated, Infragistics had decided to delegate full responsibility for setting up the new department, selecting and organising the team and developing the business to the Head-to-be. So, apart from the two very different areas of technical expertise, the perfect candidate needed to be a strong leader, with sufficient managerial experience, marked organisational skills and a feel for the commercial side of the business. Another key aspect of the position was the need to take over some active projects under development in the H.Q. office of Infragistics. The seamless transfer of these projects from New Jersey to Sofia was yet another major responsibility that the new Team Leader needed to take care of, withing a very sensitive time horizon.
From the very beginning it was clear to us that Bulgarian market could not offer many candidates fit for this position. Our research returned two possible names, whom we approached and talked into sitting for an interview. However, none of them turned out to be equally strong in all the needed qualities and experience. Instead of putting a ‘dead end’ label on the assignment, we decided to make a bold move and broaden the geography of our search. We started looking for Bulgarian IT specialists presently working abroad, but with more or less definitive intentions of returning to Bulgaria. Mobilising our network of contacts led us to a senior software architect, working on large enterprise projects in the UK. The candidate looked very promising so we were swift in approaching him, first over phone and then in an informal face-to-face meeting. We briefed him about the current status of the IT market in Bulgaria, gave him insight into Infragistics and the specifics of the position. However, by the time of our first meeting the candidate had been approached by another company, a direct competitor of Infragistics. Negotiations were quite advanced and the other company had already placed an offer. In this situation we felt we needed to intensify our communication along two lines. On one hand, we informed Infragistics about the current status and urged them to express interest in the candidate in a more decisive manner. On the other hand, we persuaded the candidate to postpone making a final decision until he sees our client’s offer. The primary goal of our communication at that point was to stir additional interest in the candidate and convince him in the advantages of Infragistics Bulgaria and the position. This won our client a couple of days, just enough to schedule videoconferencing interview with the HQ office of the company in the USA and put together an offer. Throughout these few days we kept literally live connection with our client, informing them of any development, change in attitude or intelligence we collected through various sources.
A day later Infragistics’ offer was accepted by the candidate. He quickly moved forward with his new job and over the next few months won himself an excellent reputation both in Infragistics and in the IT industry in Bulgaria. He is still working at Infragistics, feeling very comfortably and building a strong and successful career there.