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Stop focusing on the technology for permanent roles

(originally posted on LinkedIn)

I've been a computer programmer since I was 8 years old; and professionally for over 20 years. During the 35 years I've been programming, these are some of the languages I've used:

- Basic
- Pascal
- Modular-2
- C
- C++
- Java
- Coldfusion
- ActionScript
- Javascript
- Haxe
- Python
- Go
- Elixir

There are loads others that I've played around with, but not done anything of interest (Rust, Ruby, Julia, Lua, Elm) - and I'm not even going to go into frameworks and tooling.

One of the things that people who are not in the programming world (and some who are) don't realise, is that it's pretty easy to pick up a language and start programming with it. The amount of learning resources is incredible; and with the wisdom of the internet, if you get stuck then an answer is only a search engine away.

The reason for this post, is that I often see job adverts (for permanent roles) that seem to require a fully formed individual who has follow the exact same path that the organisations development team have followed. This often means you get very silly job adverts, demanding exact matches in key technologies, with very little emphasis on the underlying experience or knowledge an individual might have.

Most good programmers I know can easily switch from their current language to a new one, and get up to speed pretty damn fast. In the past, as a hiring manager, I've recruited people who HAVE NOT used the languages the platform was developed in, but I knew from their experience they could easily learn and get up to speed pretty damn quick.

So, organisations, hiring managers, recruiters - stop focusing on the technology and focus on experience and knowledge for your next permanent hire.

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