Tom Sweeney

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Archive for November, 2009

Sourcing Campaigns

Posted by sweens on November 25, 2009

My firm recently started sourcing campaigns where we are going to target a specific type of candidate or technology for a month and try to find as many people as we can.  We have made it into a bit of a contest within the office and have dangled a small carrot at the end of it.  My personal opinion is that this is a good idea however I would caution any firm to stress the focus of the campaign. 

 The primary focus still needs to be recruiting the regular orders.  The sourcing campaign is something that should be done for a small portion of the day or during some downtime.  You would not want your recruiters to stop sourcing their real positions for a sourcing campaign that may not pay any immediate dividends.

 Does anyone else have any ideas or tactics their office uses this way?

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Interesting times lie ahead for Procom’s Ottawa office

Posted by sweens on November 20, 2009

 While the effects of the recession are still in full force for the Ottawa IT market, some of Ottawa’s private sector companies are continuing to grow while others are still downsizing.  Ottawa’s unique blend of public and private sector IT business has helped mask the true effects that the recession has had on the city.  The large Government presence in Ottawa has continued to push forward with new IT projects but it has also begun to cut the budgets on some existing projects.  This has caused many IT consultants who were supporting projects to be back on the market looking for new contracts.

Labour market conditions in Ottawa have been fluctuating recently due to outside factors changing the shape of IT contracting and the vision of IT projects.  Many of our clients continue to push for contracting rate reductions as they look to get more production for less money these days.  The swine flu craze has caused the Government to throw more money at this issue which has forced them to create new projects and initiatives in the on-going effort to combat this issue.  We are continuing to experience growing pains with Government procurement methods as the push for full TBIPS compliance by all Government departments changes the landscape of procurement into the Government. 

Over the last few months we have seen increased levels of IT positions as Government employees returned from summer vacations and started getting their Q3/Q4 projects underway.  Over the last few weeks we have seen many departments looking to hire consultants prior to the Christmas break in an effort to staff their projects and hit the ground running as we enter 2010.

The Procom Ottawa office is really looking forward to sinking its teeth into the public sector once 2010 rolls around as many Government departs will look to spend their remaining budgets prior to their fiscal year end.  As we have seen many projects begin prior to the holidays we expect to see many supporting roles emerge following the holidays as our clients look for the go-to resources they are going to need to make these projects take flight.

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White paper looks at why Canuck tech firms are “disappearing”

Posted by sweens on November 6, 2009

By Ottawa Business Journal Staff
Wed, Oct 14, 2009 11:00 AM EST

Canada is wasting the productive lives of “many brilliant and courageous knowledge workers, and losing large sums of money doing it.”

At least, that’s the hypothesis of a white paper released Wednesday morning by Toronto-based Impact Group, which aims to answer the question of why Canadian technology firms are “disappearing.”

Using interviews with former CEOs and investors from 18 R&D performing companies no longer part of Canada’s business landscape, Impact says it discovered that 10 of the 18 firms became insolvent with the other eight disappearing through merger or sale. In five cases, those mergers or sales were profitable, it added.

The extinct firms, however, shared a number of characteristics, Impact said:

– A lack of commerce competence through poor customer engagement;

– Preoccupation with technology and idea-driven R&D “often resulted in a large R&D team with… an unsustainable burn rate”;

– Dysfunctional governance, including lack of shared goals between management and the company’s board of directors, and a lack of enterprise experience among investors.

“While Canada is second to none in technology, there is a significant lack of commerce skills among our technology entrepreneurs”, says Douglas Barber, founder and former CEO of Gennum Corp. and now a distinguished professor-in-residence at McMaster University, in a statement supplied by Impact Group.

“Companies often find themselves dependent on U.S. and other foreign nationals for executive talent especially for customer-facing experience and skills. If we are to succeed, the notion that technology coupled with sufficient venture capital will lead to success in the knowledge economy must be complemented by a deeper understanding of the human dimensions of enterprise and of the value exchange that is commerce.”


 Available at –

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