Sunday, August 28, 2011

What Makes a Good High Performance Computing Candidate?


In a recent Twitter post, I was asked, “What makes a good candidate for an HPC recruiter?”  Given that Twitter only allows for 140 characters or less, I wasn’t sure I could successfully answer this question with a direct reply, so I thought it would make a good topic for our Berkeley Lab Recruiters blog.

The question was derived from the August 2011 issue of Scientific Computing World that included an article (read here) that featuring Kathy Yelick, our Associate Lab Director for Computing Sciences and Director of NERSC (National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center), and myself as recruiter for Computing Sciences and driver for social media at the Lab.  In the article we discuss the advantages of a High Performance Computing (HPC) professional working at Berkeley Lab and some of the current problems facing the world an individual may find themselves trying to solve.  

It’s a simple question to answer, but relies upon so many variables.  Of course the first thing we have to look at are the requirements of the job.  Like any other recruitment, we always start with a need, or a gap analysis and move forward from there.  From that needs analysis is where we get our job descriptions, which are the foundation for someone to apply.  We list the skills, knowledge and abilities needed to do the basic job.  Beyond that, we are looking for smart, experienced and resourceful individuals that possess the drive and initiative to look beyond their own desk with a desire to solve problems.  Then it comes down to interpersonal skills – we want people who work well with other people.  It’s a collaborative environment, and we really need folks who collaborate well!

Here's a list of our current HPC openings:


Thanks @GunnarVikberg for asking!

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