SnapEDA: Recruiting Top Engineering Talent in an Amazon World


Reading time ( words)

You don’t have to love EDA to work at SnapEDA, but it helps. This startup, founded by Natasha Baker, is on its way to creating the world’s largest parts library for PCB designers. Baker leads a small team of young, fiercely talented engineers—the kind of employees that are attractive to companies like Google and Facebook. I asked Natasha to explain her hiring process, and how she ensures that each employee is the right fit for SnapEDA. 

Andy Shaughnessy: Natasha, tell us a little about SnapEDA and the kind of people you employ.

Natasha Baker: We’re a team of nine, and we're all electrical and computer engineers, except for our graphic designer. Together, we've built the Internet's first library for circuit board design. What inspires us as a team is hearing about the thousands of PCB designs made with our platform each week. Whether it's satellites or drones, getting to assist in the design of interesting new devices is extremely rewarding.

We look for three main things when hiring: First, we look for engineers with strong software and PCB design skills. Software is important because we write software on a daily basis. But to make a great product, we want that software to be guided by a deep understanding of the PCB design flow. Second, we look for passion. As EEs, we want to make life easier for our colleagues. We are passionate about making tools that streamline the PCB design process. Finally, we look for people who are detail-oriented. Our software is simple and easy-to-use, but it's quite sophisticated behind the scenes. We generate critical manufacturing data, like footprints, and develop proprietary software to verify their manufacturability. So, it’s crucial that our team members value attention to detail where it matters most—the design data.

Shaughnessy: What are some of the challenges you face in hiring skilled, educated workers?

Baker: One of the biggest challenges is that there seems to be a stigma around the EDA industry. New grads are drawn to companies like Google, Facebook, Apple, and Amazon, and it seems that EDA has lost some of its luster.

During the recruiting process, I’ve reached out to several software developers who previously worked in the EDA industry who told me, “Sorry, I’ve moved on from EDA.” I think there’s an opportunity to reinvigorate EDA, because it truly is the backbone of the tech industry, which makes all the products that we love possible, from iPhones to Teslas.

To read this entire article, which appeared in the May 2017 issue of The PCb Design Magazine, click here.

Share


Suggested Items

APCT Moves into Rigid-Flex with Cartel, Cirtech Acquisition

06/18/2018 | Andy Shaughnessy
When I spoke with APCT President Steve Robinson a year ago, he said he was interested in adding flex and rigid-flex capabilities, and working closely with designers and engineers. With the recent acquisition of Cartel and their subsidiary Cirtech, APCT now has a flex and rigidflex facility, along with military and aerospace certifications. At DesignCon 2018, I asked Steve to discuss these acquisitions and what they mean for APCT and their customers.

Estonia a Hot Spot for New Technology

04/23/2018 | Andy Shaughnessy, Design007 Magazine
Most Westerners know very little about Estonia. A former Soviet Bloc country, Estonia has come a long way since restoring its independence in 1991. Electronics companies are thriving in this tiny EU member country, and capital city Tallinn has been called “Silicon Valley on the Baltic Sea.” During productronica, I met with Arno Kolk, general manager of the Estonian Electronics Industries Association, and we discussed the explosion of new technology in this “Baltic Tiger” country?

Out-of-the-Box Innovation Strikes a Chord at NAMM 2018

02/09/2018 | Dick Crowe, I-Connect007
The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) holds two shows each year; the first is in Anaheim in January, and the second in Nashville in July. The January show is huge, attracting 100,000 visitors during its four-day run. My friend and editor (and bass player) Dan Feinberg has discussed how difficult it was for him to cover the CES show in a few days, and I must echo that sentiment about NAMM. It is one gigantic show.



Copyright © 2018 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.