Hunting for an in-demand job – lessons learned.

How to read this?

  • If you super-happy with your job, you can close this tab now.

  • If you’re (or want to be) an entrepreneur, you can close this tab now and return to your business.

  • If you’ve 2 minutes: Ctrl+F “TLDR”.

  • If you considering a career change, briefly look through and find the part which you feel unsure/confused about and get some inspiration. Ask for missing data, I’m happy to share more from my brief experience (if it helps).

  • If you just mindlessly surfing around, stop and do something meaningful.


I wanted to change my job (why? below) and spent over two months doing so. As you were asking me questions of my experience, I’ve compiled my notes into this blogpost which hopefully answers most of your questions. If not, please feel encouraged to asked them.


My job hunt strategy was “exhaustive search”, trying out everything out there within my free time. Had 10 onsites and chatted with ~50 companies. And it was fun, you can get to chat with cool people, get to know how all kind of companies operate and how they create value. Also, you’re at center of the attention and get praised all the time 😛

For those short on time, after reading this sections, feel free to skip to Lessons Learned -> TLDR;

I was looking a tech job (more jobs than people market). That means you are really wanted and thus you can lead the process, negotiate terms or even create a position for yourself in a company you love.

In such a market, competition between companies for talent is aggressive, which fuels a big pool of recruiters getting about ~5-10% of your starting salary (it’s complicated[quora]) which leads to inherent bias. Actually everything you hear, recruiters, CEOs, employees has a positive bias, because they work for the company (to see the other side, look for ex-employees, critical press, ask competitors).

The most important notion is that it’s a matchmaking between your desires and the companies needs. As in dating, there a lot of options, constrained by unique individual preferences. But there is one big difference, you’re signing a 40h+/week relationship for years+ based upon ~20h (biased) experience. That introduces difference in expectations and reality.


Start -> Signing and offer: 2.5 months.

  • 6 Offers (Robinhood, Scale API, Two Sigma, Bridgewater, Laserlike, AI team @Apple).

  • 8 Onsites (MapD, +Duetto; +2 in 2016: Voleon, Facebook)

  • 15+ Recruiter calls

  • 12+ Phone screens (super-basic “it’s a potential match?” call, usually through email)

  • 17+ Phone tech interviews

  • 20+ Follow up calls

  • 172 email threads

  • 3 Homeworks (3h+)

  • 3 Culture events


I had a good job at Google, working on Continue reading “Hunting for an in-demand job – lessons learned.”