Best recruiting trick I’ve ever seen a startup use

When you watch my videos of SOASTA, a startup in Silicon Valley that’s building an automated Web testing tool (pretty cool, too) you’ll notice that every employee has a 30-inch Apple monitor on their desks. That isn’t all. They also bought every employee two computers: one a MacPro and another a MacBookPro. But even more, they bought everyone a 30-inch monitor for use at home with their MacBookPro.

I asked founder Ken Gardner why he did that and he said he noticed he was a lot more productive when using a 30-inch monitor and he wanted every bit of productivity he could get out his employees so he bought them all two too.

It made me want to work for Ken. And it’s not the only visionary thing he’s done with his company, either. They took the interface from Apple’s Garage Band and put it on enterprise software.

Interview and tour of SOASTA with Ken Gardner is here.
Demo of SOASTA is here.

14 thoughts on “Best recruiting trick I’ve ever seen a startup use

  1. I think Joel actually thinks about things more than just “Hey, this makes ME more productive, I’m going to buy two for all my employees.”

  2. I think Joel actually thinks about things more than just “Hey, this makes ME more productive, I’m going to buy two for all my employees.”

  3. It could be that, DJ, or it could be the sort of spending that people like Joel Spolsky (who’s obviously very successful in the software development field) encourage. Joel spent a significant amount of money on things that managers of software houses would consider unimportant to productivity, such as office architecture, and it pays dividends.

  4. It could be that, DJ, or it could be the sort of spending that people like Joel Spolsky (who’s obviously very successful in the software development field) encourage. Joel spent a significant amount of money on things that managers of software houses would consider unimportant to productivity, such as office architecture, and it pays dividends.

  5. Wow, this sounds like the same reckless spending that characterized the dot-com bubble era. People getting a whole lot of work done on their macbookpro plus 30 inch monitor at home I bet.

  6. Wow, this sounds like the same reckless spending that characterized the dot-com bubble era. People getting a whole lot of work done on their macbookpro plus 30 inch monitor at home I bet.

  7. yess

    so there doing a automated Web testing tool and all ther pc’s are macs – can you see the flaw in that children.

    I interviwed at XXXX Publishing (a major player in the SF and SF Mag market in the uk) a couple of years back.

    In theory it was for a run of the mill developer job – but it in hindsight was obvious they had spent all the money on Macs for the designers and nothing on back office integration – and what they realy needed was a technical arichitect.

    They had/have as good as if not better brand reconition for sf/comics as Amazon and could have had a nice slick online business.

  8. yess

    so there doing a automated Web testing tool and all ther pc’s are macs – can you see the flaw in that children.

    I interviwed at XXXX Publishing (a major player in the SF and SF Mag market in the uk) a couple of years back.

    In theory it was for a run of the mill developer job – but it in hindsight was obvious they had spent all the money on Macs for the designers and nothing on back office integration – and what they realy needed was a technical arichitect.

    They had/have as good as if not better brand reconition for sf/comics as Amazon and could have had a nice slick online business.

  9. Geesh! That’s brill! I hope more peeps realize that dramatically bigger monitors with more screen real estate isn’t just a “fad” — you can do more when you see more. Especially since computer screen sizes have been steadily increasing over the years (gosh, visions of a 9-in. Mac Classic here).

    I know from personal experience my productivity went up when I got twin Samsung SyncMaster 204Bs. Well worth the price, and ever since, I’ve been able to run Second Life and watch its nature scenes in the other monitor while reading Scobleizer!

    SOASTA sure looks like they’re leading by example.

  10. Geesh! That’s brill! I hope more peeps realize that dramatically bigger monitors with more screen real estate isn’t just a “fad” — you can do more when you see more. Especially since computer screen sizes have been steadily increasing over the years (gosh, visions of a 9-in. Mac Classic here).

    I know from personal experience my productivity went up when I got twin Samsung SyncMaster 204Bs. Well worth the price, and ever since, I’ve been able to run Second Life and watch its nature scenes in the other monitor while reading Scobleizer!

    SOASTA sure looks like they’re leading by example.

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