On a weekly basis, my team goes through the newly opened marketing and finance positions at Microsoft to assess the profiles requested. Instead of looking at what the job is, we are looking at the skill sets the hiring managers are asking for. This gives us some meaningful data to utilize for the development of candidate generation strategies. It matters less to us that we have a certain number of positions with a specific title. We care about who they want, what that person is doing right now and how we will find them. So at any moment, I can review what is open in marketing and finance and identify the skill "buckets" required. So I thought I would share some of this info to give you a snapshot of what we are looking for right now (I mean literally…this week). I’m going to start off with marketing since that is our biggest need. First a few caveats. These  skills buckets are not mutually exclusive. Any one person may fit into multiple profiles...we try to identify the highest priority profile for any given position…the top “thing” the hiring manager wants to see in someone’s background. So for example, a person who is doing marketing at an online retailer could be included under consumer inbound/outbound as well as content/editorial. A specific role may have elements of both of those profiles, but we only assign it the profile that we think is most important. We only assign each position to one bucket, but candidates can fit many. Also these are informal groupings of skills. You won't see anything on our careers site about these profile buckets. I’m just sharing them here so you can get a sense of what we are hiring for. It’s an exercise we use to make sure that we are connecting candidates with the recruiters that have open positions that fit their profile(s). This is how, when you send me your resume (heathham@microsoft.com), we know which positions you could be a fit for. We decided to create a system versus trying to remember the requirements for all the open positions.

Anyway, here's what we are looking for in marketing. We are currently tracking about 372 positions.  These are our larger profile needs:

We have 113 positions that we have classified as outbound marketing in the enterprise or small and medium business space. I’ve described this bucket in the past. These are the folks that do planning, strategy and execution around go-to-markets for products and audiences. That is 30% of our open marketing positions.

We have 53 positions that we classified as inbound product management in the same space. These are people working on product strategy (roadmap, value proposition, etc.). That’s about 14%.

There are 47 positions requesting a consumer product management skill set—either developing product strategy or marketing strategy (inbound or outbound). Thirteen  percent of open marketing positions fall into this category.

There are 33 positions requiring partner marketing experience (meaning marketing to or with partners).

There are 28 positions that have identified management consulting as the desired skill set. People with this type of background can also fit into a number of other roles/categories (inbound product management, strategic alliance, etc.). Eight percent of open positions.

The rest of the profiles…still quite a few of each type of position

Public and/or analyst relations: 18

Direct marketing or CRM: 16

Evangelism: 13

Partner relationship management: 8

Strategic alliance (build/buy/license strategy): 8

Brand: 7

Training: 6

Advertising, : 5

Market Research: 5

Events: 3

Licensing/pricing: 3

Content/editorial: 3

 Emerging markets: 2  

We also had a chunk of “other”.  I’ll keep you updated as we see shifts in our hiring demand profile. And don’t worry if you don’t see something on here that you think is you. You might be calling it something different. We are more than happy to take a look at your resume and do our best to match it to what is open.

Feel free to ask questions about any of the profile groups.