The Road to WTIA’s Draft Day, June 25


The turnout at Training Day on June 15, was tremendous and we enjoyed meeting and helping all the enthusiastic candidates that participated. It was an afternoon that was rich with insight and information from caring industry mentors and professionals. The one-on-one sessions gave new dimensions to approaching a job search for attendees. And if that wasn’t enough, there was a pop-up photography studio on site! Everyone was provided with a professionally produced headshot to use in their social media professional network platform of choice! How cool is that?!

Learn more about the selection process.


Application Process

  • Candidates must be nominated by a tech educator
  • Eligible tech educators: University, Community College or tech program instructors (ie, Code Fellows, Dev BootCamp, Coding Dojo, etc)
  • Job types: QAE, SDET, TPM, PM, Information Security Analyst

Tech Educators
{Each instructor may submit up to 10 nominees}

  1. Submit an online Draft Day Nomination Form to refer a former or current class participant
  2. Provide Nominee with the Candidate Application Essay form

Nominees Must Submit

  1. Draft Day Candidate Application form: provided by the nominating tech educator
  2. Resume (resumes must be submitted as a word doc. PDF’s will not be accepted)


Nominate a candidate
Recruit Candidates

Contact Heather Craig:

Pilot Recruiting Program: DRAFT DAY — Yay!!

Washington Technology Industry Association will launch their Pilot Recruiting Program this month.3.16.16_Draft-Day-Heather-Craig-1-680x380
Brett Greene, Gina Phillips, and Eric Osborne participated in the Diversity & Disruption brainstorming session during FullConTech 2015, where the idea for WTIA Draft Day was first conceived.

We are pleased and excited to share Heather Craig‘s post from the Washington Technology Industry Association’s blog about the WTIA‘s pilot recruiting program, artfully titled, Draft Day. What’s the ‘big deal’,  you ask? Read on and consider the possibilities for talented candidates, from all backgrounds, when their career and life skills and experiences are presented anonymously. Need I say more? Read on.

Tech Recruiting is at a crossroads.  With startups and mid-size companies face stiff competition from big budget tech giants, companies of all sizes face budgetary, logistical and need constraints that have forced them into to an increasingly shallow talent pool. When discussing how they invest in recruiting, many companies admit to the unsustainable practice of sourcing from a limited pipeline of ‘trusted’ schools such as Stanford and MIT.

Meanwhile, a deep pool of talented students, veterans and candidates with non-traditional backgrounds are going unnoticed. To bridge this gap, WTIA is playing matchmaker to these two ships passing in the night, by building a unique Recruitment: Draft Day and Interview Prep Program: Training Day – to connect a diverse tech talent from underrepresented schools and training programs with local tech employers.

Draft Day aims to introduce candidates to a wide variety of tech companies; increase viability of under-represented schools as recruiting sources; and expand the talent pipeline for industry.

THE BLIND ROAD to DRAFT DAY, June 25: As the unifying voice for the tech community, WTIA assembled an impressive Advisory Council from local tech companies to help guide the application and future candidate selection process.

WTIA is partnering with regional Tech Ed program leaders who will nominate potential Draft Day participants. Nominators will submit an online questionnaire detailing why the candidate was selected, while candidates will submit resumes and answer three brief essay questions.

Here’s the twist. Applications will be stripped of the names of both the candidate and their respective college or training program before being reviewed by the Advisory Council. Neither the applicant review panel nor the potential employers will be privy to the information prior to the interview process. #LevelThePlayingField.

Top candidates will be selected to enter Training Camp. A one-day intensive interview-prep program providing resume review, mock interviews, panel discussions and other perks. After weighing resumes, essay questions, nominator testimonials and Training Camp performance, final candidates will then be selected to move on to Draft Day.

AN EYE-OPENING EXPERIENCE: On Draft Day, candidates will rotate through employers in a speed-dating format. At the end of each round, both candidates and employers will score each other. Concluding final rounds, all will be revealed as names, evaluations and matches will be shared at a networking reception.

If you’re interested in recruiting talent at Draft Day, Speaking at Training Camp, sponsorship opportunities, volunteering or keeping up to date on our progress please contact: or let us know here.

What do you think about this idea? We want to know that, too!

Finding the Backdoor to your Interview

Spend at least 80% of your time finding a key to the back door. Unless you’re a perfect fit you will not get an interview by applying directly to a job posting. So don’t waste your time. Limit this effort to one hour per day.cropped-cropped-silho_teaser221.png

This call out is from a recent article written by Lou Adler. It’s here because we think it’s important to hear from a recruiter and influencer especially when he is telling you to stop applying directly to job postings and clicking anonymously on the ‘submit’ button. It’s what 225AM has been saying since our ‘Day 1’ and why we give our users a way to search across your social networks that sorts your connections by company, job title, location or industry. If you are looking to transition from your current job or searching for your first one then you really ought to refresh your perspective in the job hunt by considering what he says here.

By the way, ‘a perfect fit’ for a job is only in the mind of an eager candidate, never in the ‘eyes’ of the Applicant Tracking System (ATS) for the reasons illustrated in the infographic linked below.



Extending Your Social Network by Your Personal Network


This is Chantal’s first 225AM report of the new year and she has discovered why we give our users the ability to add a single new connection [read: someone hands you their contact information or business card in a meet and greet setting] to her 225AM aggregated, searchable, network. It’s a short little clip wherein you’ll hear how this simple tool has already helped her stay organized and networking.

225AM: You Don’t Want To Do What We Do

A little bit ago, I linked to an article by Sandra Long where she discussed the importance of doing your homework before a job interview. Today, I want to talk a bit about the part that 225AM plays in that process. But first, let’s go travel back to some time between 2004 and 2008.

The dining hall where I went to college wasn’t the biggest or most state-of-the-art, but it had its fair share of goodies. It had a stir fry station, a tiny pasta bar, a salad bar, a place where you could make mini pizzas. By my senior year, I had burnt out on hot dogs and “Moroccan chicken,” so I decided to try some new things. I fried rice, made pizzas, and built pasta dishes for myself. I thought I was one heck of a cook.

Then I graduated and got my own apartment. Nobody precooked the rice or pasta there, no one chopped the onions for me, no one went to the grocery store and made sure I had everything I needed for the night’s meal. Doing these things on my own wasn’t hard, really. It just took time and my (limited) attention, and that added up.

I tell this story here because preparing for a job interview can be a lot like prepping a meal. No, the steps you take aren’t that difficult, but there are a lot of them, and it’s easy to get lost and miss something simple, but crucial. That’s where 225AM comes in. We keep track of things for you and you on track.

Here’s the secret sauce: we don’t do anything you can’t do yourself. But we will remind you of the details like routinely updating your resume and cover letter and we do the stuff that you might not have time for, like keeping track of every email, call or meeting you have with your network connections or with the hiring manager/recruiter — we keep the scrambled job puzzle pieces together in your My Activity page:


And remember, you will always have a full picture in front of you on your Dashboard:

At 225AM, you will always have actionable insight to your next move in getting a job. Isn’t this better than that spreadsheet?


#1 Job Search Tool : Person-to-Person Networking

As most of my focus and time is on the 2014 MPACE Conference this week I wanted to share briefly a recent post about by an English Teacher/Resume Writer, Steve Brady, who used a segment from The Quick & Easy Guide to Networking: Tips, Tricks & Tools for Jobseekers, one of his (all career and job search related) guidebooks that is intended to be a networking primer for job/internship seekers of all ages.

An advantage for 225AM users is that the searching, identifying and then the tracking and organization of schedules and contacts is managed by us in your 225AM account. You may find it useful. Let me know if you don’t!

Getting a Job: Now & Later

Hey, here’s a neat article about what’s next for the Stanford class of 2014! Oh, what’s that? You’re part of the tiny demographic known as “People Who Didn’t Go To Stanford.” Weird! Well then, take a look at this New York Times article about Brooklyn College graduates. Didn’t go there either? Too bad! This is all you get!

Now, a lot of these numbers and stories can be depressing, but bear with me. The reason I’m posting this stuff is two-fold.

First, if you’re a recent college graduate who’s struggling to find a new job, YOU’RE NOT ALONE. Even graduates of a place like Stanford are having a hard time in this market. Does knowing that make the process easier for you? No. But hopefully it will bolster you to keep your spirits up, because if there’s one thing that really slows down a process like the job search, it’s self-doubt. So, take a look at these articles and rest assured, the problem isn’t you.

Second, if you’re not graduating college yet, start your job search now. Start seeing what you need to get the kind of first job you want. Look into internships. Volunteer. Don’t just put the whole process off until later. Do SOMETHING even if it’s just research… or daydreaming. Any amount of thought is better than no thought at all.

So, go ahead: read up, chin up, start up (early).

photo by Flickr user, used under a Creative Commons License.