Help Wanted! Silicon Valley’s Hiring Crunch

May 9, 2012 | By
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Tango co-founder Eric Setton spends a third of his time recruiting staff.

Blame it on go-kart racing.

Co-founder and chief technology officer Eric Setton has spontaneously taken everyone on a field trip. It is his way of rewarding his mobile-engineering team for working ridiculous start-up hours.

Just 18 months ago, Tango was just another unknown scrappy venture trying to make it in Silicon Valley.

But, within 10 days of introducing its free mobile video-calling service for smartphones over 3G, 4G and wi-fi, Tango amassed a million users.

This put it head-to-head with established giants such as Apple, Skype, and Google.

“No company is ready for that,” Mr Setton says.

“Instantly, we were all under water. We just desperately, desperately needed more people. Otherwise we were going to suffocate.”

A month after launching the service “we almost choked”, Mr Setton recalls.

Contingency recruiters would send piles of CVs Tango’s way, but “there was almost no filtering”.

Explosive growth

“We didn’t have time to spend on interviews. If we didn’t spend 24 hours on coding and making sure the service would stay up, it would literally go down, so it was a very uncomfortable position.”

Somehow, despite the explosive growth, the fledgling start-up managed to keep the new service running, scale it, and cobble together an efficient “recruiting engine”.

Today, Tango has 90 engineers supporting 45 million users worldwide. Usage is expected to reach 100 million by the end of the year, according to company estimates.

Tango hires about one new employee every week and recently closed a $40m round of funding that brought the total capital raised to nearly $100m.

And since its introduction in September 2010, the mobile video-calling app has kept its top-10 spot in the free “social networking” category of the App Store.

Right now it’s number seven, behind Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Skype, Voxer Walkie-Talkie and Color Text Messages – an enviable position for any start-up.

Read the whole story:  BBC

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