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A senior software engineer speaks out

"Are my 17+years of C++ experience not enough?"

I recently read an article on eFinancialCareers titled "The pool of talented C++ developers is running dry". I don't believe it tells the whole story. I think there is another reason the article failed to touch on: the unrealistic demands of these companies. To be blunt, they're too picky.  What do I mean by this?  Let me explain.

I am a pretty good C++ engineer from one of the most demanding industries out there.  I am an embedded software engineer in avionics and defense to be exact. You might think that would command some respect, but just because I lack experience in AWS or Azure, peripheral items, I suffer. By placing these in the job requirements, developers like me are unable to even have a chance at an interview.

I've been searching for a C++ development role in finance.  I've been applying for jobs across the internet, but everytime I apply for one of these positions I get an automated system that poses a number of requirements questions.  These systems are intended to weed out all applicants who may indeed be good engineers but fail to check every other box expected of the finance industry.  They are missing out on good engineers and pretending that they don't exist.

C++ is a very powerful language, that's why these companies use it. However, an engineer needs to be pretty good to take full advantage of it.  I've been using C++ for decades, are my 17 years of experience not good enough for them? If that's the case, they will continue to struggle for a long time and miss on talented engineers like me.

I simply wished to provide an additional perspective missing from the initial article.  I would really love to work for these fintech companies only if they would give me a chance. There is plenty of talent out there and the pool is certainly not drying up, they just need to be brave enough to take the dive.

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Photo: eFinancialCareers/Dall-e

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AUTHORWalter Schrader Insider Comment
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  • An
    Antoine Langevin
    11 November 2022

    Seems like crying for no reason, why don't you get a certificate for AWS, Azure or GCP... They take what? A month? It's not long if you're so good like you say.... Companies are too picky yes but they also need some proof that you know at least the fundamentals. If you work in defence all your life and you're not curious about stuff like the cloud or new technologies, yes, you'll be rejected and yes, it'll make you a bad engineer for the modern times and a good one for the old times.

  • Me
    Melody Harpole
    7 November 2022

    Let's stop lying and just be honest. When they say there aren't enough applicants but they automatically delete applications from white men. There is a problem!
    The good news is a nasty depression is coming. These racist sociopathic businesses will not survive! Those who hire the best talent , might.

  • Ra
    Raghav Shankar
    7 November 2022

    Reading this article feels like it's another me. Same situation being in new york

  • Mi
    Michael Fulton
    6 November 2022

    Oh, please.

    Just get a cert in AWS or Azure.

    You know why they are requiring it? Because it’s required to know about cloud in 2022. i get that you’re a venerated C++ developer (clap clap) but do you know how to solve company’s problems of today? Shouldn’t picking up some new skills be easy for you? Isn’t that what a good engineer does anyway?

  • MM
    MM
    6 November 2022

    I can relate on some kind of parallel level. I work in finance, failed 3 times at getting in to Google - they focus on computer science, conversely have rejected every single candidate from Google who ever interviewed with me, as they really didn't know the basics of C++ - I focus on software engineering. I also don't think I would pass an interview for embedded. Over 25 years i have grilled hundreds of candidates for c++ dev jobs. I look for enthusiasm (which C++ books did you read), and fluency (can you speak out without double checking everything on the web), and straight forward ability to code. It's a mistake to believe that doing something for a long time makes you good at it. That's quantity, not quality. Getting a job in a different industry than your own, is essentially a new problem to solve. Understand the differences, and see if you can overcome them. Don't complain about problems you can't solve, find ones you can solve.

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