Friday, October 26, 2007

Arrogant Dismissive Me

My N73 has a voice synthesizer built in that can be used to announce who is calling. If the number of the person calling is in the phone book, the voice will say the name -- often not so very good, but recognizable -- in between the sweet tones of the stereo high-fidelity ringtone, so I would know who was calling me from across the room. Nobody almost ever really called me, and the people who called me are friends, so it was very seldom I would hear the ringtone without an announcement. Until now. For the last 3 weeks. And when I hear the ringtone without the name, I can predict now with 90% certainty how the call will go. And it is making me wonder about the state of tech on all kinds of levels.

If the voice sounds like the person learned English in India or Pakistan, it starts off with "Hi, I am looking for Van / FJ Van?" An American-English voice will look for FJ. They will both ask me how I am, the US voice sounding a little less scripted, but we both know we don't want an answer. They'll tell me they found my resume on Dice, and they have a position that they'd li--

I have learned to cut them off to save us all time: "What city?" It's always something in the SF Bay Area, usually Mountain View. My Dice profile lists as work locations LA and, as a long shot since you can fill in two cities, Vancouver. Very seldom the caller will acknowledge that LA is not in the San Francisco Bay Area, usually they do not and they will barrel on and I stop them to tell them I am not interested in relocating.

I keep wondering if they consider that everyone will relocate as a given, are just calling everybody desperately, usually based on a bad keyword match. Today, when the answer was again a city in the Bay Area, I asked "Are you looking at my profile? Can you see what I entered as locations to work?" He glossed right over the fact I am nowhere near SF, making me wonder if he even knows what California looks like. I think I am going to probe a little deeper with the next call.

Maybe in a couple of months I will be deeply regretting blowing these calls off, because I do blow them off right now. I have my doubts about LA, but I am making some awesome friends here. I live in a modern and solid 1000 sq ft loft, which I consider gorgeous, with walkable services nearby, my own deeded parking, and close to major roads to take me to other interesting parts of the metro area. OK, so I couldn't have afforded this on my own, but that doesn't mean I am about to give it up to either live in Oakland or have a roommate, and do Silicon Valley traffic. I keep wondering what salary I should demand to compensate for the change in real-estate standard of living. As said, I didn't cut this morning's call off, but just named a number as my base yearly salary that was 50% over what I made in Disney Mobile. Again a gloss over, he would submit my request.

Of course when I received the position in email, it wasn't a good fit, just a bad keyword match, and I could see it a mile away. But I am really curious now. Are some of these recruiters actually working off-shore, without a map? Are insane salaries available? But just so you know, and in follow-up to John wondering why rents are actually going up and other's locked musings about real estate in SF crashingadjusting or not, I am getting these calls daily, sometimes two a day. Open positions in tech, and especially mobile tech, are way up in the SF Bay Area.