If you or your spouse are looking for a technology job in Portland, we're happy to report the opportunities are diverse and plentiful.
As Portland IT Recruiters, we're proud to be a part of a vibrant technology community in Portland. Thanks to a growing start-up scene and the expansion of well-established tech companies in the Portland area, the Silicon Forest is thriving. With the low cost of commercial rents compared to other technology hubs, high quality of life, cheap electricity, and a DIY culture, it's easy to see why.
High-tech manufacturing, software development and renewable energy companies have all taken root in and around the City of Roses. Let us give you a glimpse into some of the most exciting technology industries in Portland.
Portland high-tech manufacturing companies are world-class
FEI Company - (NASDAQ: FEIC) Ever wonder who makes electron microscopes? (We're technical recruiters - electron microscopes push out geek buttons!) FEI is a leader in electron microscope and focused ion beam technologies for nanoscale researchers. If you know what those are, we applaud you. FEI's global headquarters are right outside of Portland in Hillsboro, about a 20-minute drive from downtown Portland.
Intel Corporation - (NASDAQ: INTC) If you own a computer, chances are pretty high it has an Intel microprocessor in it. While Intel's headquarters are in Santa Clara, California, the semiconductor development and manufacturing facility in Hillsboro, just outside of Portland, is Intel's largest, employing nearly 16,000 Oregonians. With seven campuses and on-site amenities that rival those of a small city, Intel Oregon is the largest private-sector employer in the Portland metro area.
Portland software companies - varied and successful
Jama Software - Privately held, locally-grown Jama builds software for managing complex projects that have many requirements - for example, devices must pass the Food and Drug Administration approval process. Jama has won many recognitions since its founding in 2007, and is regarded as one of Portland's most promising technology companies. It has about 50 employees.
Jive Software Inc. - (NASDAQ: JIVE) We've been keeping an eye on this rapidly growing business. Now headquartered in Palo Alto, California, Jive has 200 employees in Portland, where it was headquartered for a few years. Jive's social business platform has been so popular, the company executed a successful IPO in December 2011 raising more than $160 million.
the CLYMB-For those who find their passion in the outdoors, The Clymb inspires human-powered adventure by delivering member-exclusive 72-hour sales on premium brands and experiences, hand-picked by our team of fellow enthusiasts and experts. Membership is free, allowing users to shape the community by inviting like-minded friends. The company is based in Portland, Ore., and was founded in 2009 by a seasoned team of outdoor and sport industry veterans.
Urban Airship - Mobile technology company Urban Airship creates tools for app developers. One of the beneficiaries of Wieden+Kennedy's Portland Incubator Experiment, Urban Airship has received more than $20 million in venture funding since its genesis in 2009. True to the start-up stereotype, the company has in part been so successful due to its emphasis on creating a fun environment to attract and retain talent.
Webtrends - One of the first players in web analytics, Webtrends is privately held and headquartered in downtown Portland. Its analytics software is used by companies that have large, complex websites, including The New York Times and Microsoft. Webtrends employs nearly 400 people worldwide, with about half in Portland.
Renewable energy companies abound in Portland
ClearEdge Power - ClearEdge Power manufactures fuel cells that efficiently transform natural gas into electricity and heat. Think miniature, refrigerator-sized power plants. The start-up recently signed a $500 million, 50-megawatt deal with Austrian company Gussing Renewable Energy GmbH - the biggest deal yet for a fuel cell company.
SolarWorld - (FWB: SWV) German solar panel manufacturer SolarWorld has its U.S. headquarters 20 minutes west of Portland in Hillsboro, Oregon, where it employs about 1,000 Oregonians. Its Hillsboro location is the largest solar cell manufacturing facility in North America.
If you want to learn more about technology jobs in Portland, Oregon, we highly recommend you visit the Silicon Florist blog to get updates on the latest technology jobs and news in Portland. Or, search our job listings here.
Bikes, gourmet food, beer, beautiful countryside…it’s all any Portland software developer could ask for. (Portland has great software jobs, too – just ask us!)
The Gourmet Century took place last weekend, launching the unofficial long-bike-ride season in Portland, Oregon. It’s been sponsored for a few years by Chris King Precision Components, a bike components manufacturer and retailer located in Northwest Portland.
For some Portland tech folks, the Gourmet Century is the premium organized ride of the summer – a chance to ride 100 kilometers of beautiful countryside, while enjoying gourmet food, beer and wine along the way.
Portland tech folks – and other bicycle-obsessed types – started the day early, with a sumptuous breakfast at Chris King headquarters, cooked by Chris King’s own chef, Robert McSpadden. (Lucky Chris King employees are fed by McSpadden every day!) Then they climbed on their bikes and rode up and over Portland’s West Hills, stopping for a snack before pedaling west.
Cyclists ascended as much as 1,000 feet in some spots to enjoy breathtaking views. The lunch, afternoon and dinner stops were catered by McSpadden, along with chefs Jason French of Ned Ludd, Chris DiMinno of Clyde Common, and John Gorham of Toro Bravo – all well-loved Portland restaurants.
In the words of one avid biker and software developer we know, “every bike ride should be in such beautiful places, and involve great food.”
Plenty of long rides for Portland software developers and I.T. Pros. [H2]
The Gourmet Century isn’t the only event that combines Portland’s biggest obsessions: bicycles, food, beer and wine:
- The Portland Century, scheduled for August 19, is a popular blend of biking, countryside, good food and beer. The Portland Century can be enjoyed as a 100-mile, 80-mile or 40-mile day, depending on your strength, stamina and ambition.
- Harvest Century – A 100-mile, 75-mile, 45-mile or 3-mile ride that starts and ends in Hillsboro, where farmland still graces the rolling hills. The ride, like other centuries, includes meals, snacks, wine and beer. Live music, too.
- Cycle Oregon is a major event – a week-long or weekend ride that’s not for the untrained or faint of heart. This year’s one-week event marks the 25th anniversary of Cycle Oregon, and it’s sold out. There’s a waiting list for the weekend ride. This is the real all-in deal, with everything laid on: not just food, but sleeping arrangements, massage and entertainment, and a route that shows off the many beauties of Oregon.
- Bridge Pedal- A celebration of urban biking, Bridge Pedal is an annual ride over Portland’s Willamette River bridges. This year’s ride is scheduled for August 12th, and it will cover all 10 bridges. Food? You bet. Participants in Bridge Pedal can also go to Bite of Oregon for free. The nosh-for-charity event takes place on August 10-12, and benefits Special Olympics. Beer? Yes, of course. Wine, too. It’s Portland, remember?
Have we left out any great rides? Tell us in the comments section below, and we’ll add them to the list.
October 4, 2011
Residents of Portland learn to appreciate sunshine. Rain and clouds are staples of the Portland climate, so people are used to walking around in the rain (remember not to carry an umbrella unless you want to stick out like a sore thumb). However, there is always a destination in mind. Portlandians can usually be found huddled inside coffee shops, restaurants, and breweries during the extended rainy season. However, when the sun does peek out, the streets are immediately filled with crowds soaking in each ray they can. On a day like this, our office took a small break from sourcing technical candidates to enjoy one of the many scenic golf courses in the area. Not being golfers, Aaron (our music aficionado) and I decided to enjoy the sunshine in another Portland activity: eating at one of the boutique restaurants around town. The sun influenced our choice and we found ourselves at the tropical and exotic Mee Sen Thai Restaurant
. Mee Sen
is like many of the restaurants in town, in the sense that the owners try to give visitors a holistic authentic experience. Mee Sen
has an open garage-style door that allows the sun to shine in, and guests to walk in and choose their own seat. The seats are wooden benches, and the water cups are made to look like cheap tin cups. The idea of this décor is to make the restaurant seem like a road side restaurant in Vietnam. In my experiences around the world, the best food tends to come from simple road side venues. Although these additions do not enhance the flavors of the food itself, Mee Sen
definitely sets the tone of the experience with the design and décor. Mee Sen
has no need to try and fool their patrons into enjoying their food, as the meal we enjoyed there was amongst the best Thai food in Portland (which is saying something). Aaron had the Beef Pad Thai that he described as “outstanding,” as the flavors were balanced because the spices didn’t overwhelm each individual ingredient. This observation brings light to the fact that a truly great chef needs to understand a dish is made flavorful by intelligent moderation, not flooding the palette. My tofu Pad Kee Mao was also superb, and the ingredients were noticeably of a high quality. Before I left, I peeked at the happy hour and dessert menu. The reasonable prices and the exotic choices immediately piqued my interest, and I will definitely be visiting Mee Sen again as soon as possible. The restaurant is located in the culturally growing Mississippi Avenue district, and is open for lunch and dinner.
Ravi Parikh, Researcher/Bloat House Guide
September 29, 2011:
No, this is not about Mobile applications and the next Angry Bird version ;-)
Recently my father and I took what is turning out to be an annual Harley ride into Northern California. On the ride, while listening to the historical tour guide provided by my father via our headsets, it occurred to me how far the dialogue on the national theatre of economics and political rhetoric has shifted away from working hard. As we rode through the countryside, I noticed the things we often take for granted now. Incredible engineering accomplishments like aqueducts’ diverting water from northern to southern California, railroads and tunnels carved through the Feather River canyons, power-lines, and of course the very roads we were motorcycling along that help bring goods to the remote towns scattered across rural America. These accomplishments took an amazing amount of work and vision and are only a few examples of the great accomplishments people in our society made in the past and in modern times of technology with software and electronics.
Today, we constantly hear how evil business, capitalism, and the free market is. It continues with how we need to take from the rich and give to the poor. More focused on accusing others vs. how to do more for yourself and those you care about. Is it any surprise then that entrepreneurialism has been on the decline in the last 20+ years here in the U.S. and why small businesses have not helped lead the way out this time around. With this decline also goes the job creation
. 99.7% of all employers in the U.S. are small businesses (entrepreneurs exercising their freedom to take risk and pursue their dreams) and are simultaneously the biggest contributors to job creation. Most, if not all, would agree with a social safety net to catch those who stumble or hit hard times but why are we focusing on that and class warfare? Taking from someone and giving it someone else is the wrong conversation for job creation and growth. A generation of children has been taught that business, capitalism, and a free market is bad and now they are entering the workforce as the boomers begin their exodus and GenX is trying to hire motivated and engaged employees. Sadly, I believe this comes at a time when the playing-field has never been more level and ripe, historically, for citizens of all races and gender to better their human condition regardless of what the media tells you.
It made me curious whether as a society we agree anymore that having the personal freedom to do the work we want and reaping the rewards of that labor is a fundamental component of being in a free country? Today, I am often surprised how little our educators, national politicians and economists spend time talking about the free market and recognizing the wonder that it is, and what it has accomplished for our country. At the root of a free market is “freedom.” We have to remember that statistically it takes lots of small businesses to eventually grow medium and big companies. See other stats here
on small business contribution to our economy.
The ability of citizens within a society to improve their situation is what academics and economists often reference as mobility. Do contributing members within a given society have the ability to move and improve their own economic situation based on their individual drive, skills, abilities, competencies, etc.? Our government has historically been pursuing the creation of ‘as level ‘ a playing field as is possible for people to do that. However, I fear our government as a whole has lost its way. The drum beat is wealth redistribution and closer to Marxist ideology than key attributes of individual and personal freedom espoused by our founding fathers rooted in the combination of John Locke’s The Second Treatise of Government
and Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations
economic philosophy . We are moving in the wrong direction. That direction unfortunately is towards a massively in debt centralized government and not the mobility and job creating society we started out building so many years ago. I hope that as a society we don’t lose future mobility for our children and the next generations by losing sight of the proven values of opportunity, hard work, risk-taking, and reward.
September 21, 2011:
Every week I find myself in a dialogue with clients and candidates about a very common topic, skills demand. My clients are very interested in knowing how much talent exists in Portland metro; skills in software, hardware, C#, java, SQL, Oracle, etc. and their availability. Candidates are asking how highly sought after their skills are. This led us to put a talent temperature gauge on our website. Over the coming months, as we collect more data, we will show trend lines from previous months.
These simple questions are at the very root of a community’s micro-economic structure. Simply put from the client: “If I want to grow or scale my business, are there enough people in town to support it? How much will it cost?” From the candidate: “If I want to change employers will I be able to do it? How quickly can I make this transition? Are there cool companies/opportunities, and can I get more $$?”
I have found that my response to these questions around supply and demand of talent swings as the local and national economy thrives or slips into a contraction mode. It only makes sense. While certainly my point of view and experience is relatively localized to Oregon and SW Washington on the demand side (companies seeking people), we have always had to look in and out of this region to find enough supply (people with skills). While I recognize that quite literally this discussion is different from one “job market” to the next, I think it is very fair to say, from our experience at EnGn in 2011, the pendulum has swung back to a position where the “talent” is in a position of power within the software, semi-conductor and I.T. fields.
What does that mean? Companies must first recognize that even though unemployment is at 9.1%. that Software, Hardware, or large I.T. shops must be careful not to fall behind the curve. For the two and a half years, prior to the middle of 2010, wages have been relatively flat. Demand had not created the need or economic impetus to drive wages or contractor labor rates up. My personal experience is that is no longer the case. We are seeing clients hold tight to recessionary contract or consulting rates even though the demand for talented contractors has continued to outpace full time permanent openings. Admittedly, my colleagues and clients on the direct/permanent employment have been quicker to respond and compete. THIS means to invest in recruiting, as well as your partnerships with talent suppliers. Prepare your interviewing team to sell your opportunity once they believe they have identified someone who fits. Act quickly without jeopardizing your selection process. Frothy skills like Mobile applications development, whether for Droid or i-phone, need to be well thought out and expect very strong competition.
EnGn has many competitors in the Portland area. Companies like Edgelink
, Vanderhouwen & Associates
, Mainz Brady, Kforce, Brentwood Group
, Pamela Jones, MRI, ATSI, etc. I list them freely because Generator Group
, our parent company being around for over 10 years, and EnGn with its new focus exclusively on technology, will put its model up against any of them. In the next couple weeks I will share how to select a good firm if your company has very aggressive growth goals. This will not be your traditional sales pitch but a fairly revealing look at the inner workings of a multi-service recruiting firm and what makes them tick. I will also give clear business logic on why even with 3+ agencies signed up to work on your jobs companies, you can experience getting very few candidates if any at all.
August 31, 2011
My co-workers and I at EnGn share one common bond: our love for food. Fortunately for us, we are lucky to be in the heart of food paradise. Portland has led the charge on many culinary frontiers, such as the growing "food cart" phenomenon, the cultural lean towards "slow" natural foods, and emergence of international fusion cuisine. As a team, we challenge ourselves to seek out new and exciting dining venues to visit and sample. Our diverse team consists of those with varied tastes and diets, and everyone has different opinions on the venues we visit. However, we share the thrill of the hunt in finding the next best haunt, and love the exploration process along the way. We hope to use the knowledge of Portland's eateries to supplement our expertise on the Portland market, and be better consultants to our candidates and clients.
Most recently, our team visited Big A** Sandwiches in Downtown Portland. The food cart is heralded as one of the premiere lunch destinations in the Burnside area. BA Sandwiches features large Ciabatta-style hoagies filled with different meats, veggies, and sauces. However, the cart is most famous (or infamous to some people) for the copious amount of fries that are piled in the middle of every sandwich. Every sandwich is handed to you warm, and you realize why they earned their name as you feel the weight of it in your hands. Unique creations, such as the Pork Hammer and Caesar Salad sandwich, fill a short but tasty menu.
The only problem with the cart is that it might be TOO filling. Our senior recruiter Matt ordered a Pork Hammer, but spent the rest of the day fighting the urge to fall asleep at his desk. Also, many people felt that the fries were overwhelming, ruining the other flavors in the sandwich. Overall, the general opinion in our group was that although the sandwich was tasty in the first few bites, the grease and heaviness would make it a better snack on a much hungrier stomach.
BA Sandwiches is located on 2nd and Alder. The cart is vegetarian friendly, and offers relatively quick service. Also, it is open late on weekend nights to feed the hungry bar crowd in the area.