New Job at Yahoo!

Yahoo!

I got a new job with one of the biggest and most recognized internet companies ever, Yahoo!

January 3rd is my first day. On 2005-12-16, we turn in our keys and move up from San Diego to Santa Monica. (It’d be nice if we have an apartment by then. Anyone have any leads? Let me know if you do. Thanks!) 2005-12-09 is my last day with DSI. Between now and then, I’ve got to write up everything that I do there, and explain how my little techno-bits work so that others can take them over.

My official title will be Front-End Engineer/Web Developer, working with the Yahoo! Games Group. I’ll eventually be responsible for the CSS, HTML, PHP, and JavaScript that will grace one of the most highly visited websites in the world.

I couldn’t be happier. This is a dream come true.

Back in October, my resume apparently jumped to the top of some kind of common search, or perhaps the Random Selection Gods simply smiled upon me. I don’t think that I changed anything in it to make it happen, or else I’d dispense some advice. In the span of one week, I got called by four different people regarding some kind of job oppertunity.

Now, I certainly wasn’t looking for a new move — I like working at DSI, I have a lot of good friends there, and I was working on a bunch of projects that were really satisfying and interesting. At first, it was simply flattering. The first offer was for something that I totally had absolutely zero interest in. The next was for something that could have turned into a bit of interesting side-work, but they decided to hire someone else so that they could get full-time work. No worries.

The next week, I got a call from a scouter from Yahoo! My heart literally jumped when I heard where she was from, and the job that they were hiring for. She found out if I was interested (Does a pope shit in the woods!?! Of COURSE I’m interested!) and set up a phone interview.

A few days later, I talked with the guy who will be my boss next year, and I really think it went about as well as it could have. I know it went good enough, because I then was asked to come up to Santa Monica for an in-person interview with the Yahoo! Media Web Developer team.

Friday was my in-person interview. That following Monday, the new elligence.net launched. I was scrambling to get the website finished and live, and I also prepared for a 4-hour grueling interview involving a 30-60 minute presentation.

The presentation involved presenting code samples of previous work that I had done. I showed off my script download tool and a drop-down script that I used on ellipedia and elligence.net.

The Yahoo! office was incredible. Just a stone’s throw from the beach, in a beautiful building in Santa Monica. I have never seen an office that was so branded. Everything was purple and yellow, with Yahoo! logos everywhere. In the waiting room, I signed a statement promising not to take any pictures or share any trade secrets, and waited for my appointment while reading a book of cartoons from the New Yorker that mention Yahoo. It was pretty impressive.

After the presentation with representatives from Yahoo! Sports, Yahoo! Autos, Yahoo! Games, Yahoo! Finance, and a few others that I’m probably forgetting, I spoke with the art director for the Yahoo! Media Group, and had another interview with the manager of the Games division. After it all, I felt like I’d had my brain taken out, stretched, and stuffed back into my head backwards.

Waiting, waiting, waiting.

The waiting between each of these tests was the hardest part. It’s not like you can be a jerk and take it personally, of course. I’ve seen the other end of the hiring process at a relatively small company, and it’s a huge job. And, having seen a few regettable mistakes, where someone seemed great and turned out to be just another schlub, I have to say that putting new hires through a long process involving meeting everyone on the team is a good idea.

I got an unofficial offer, and told my references what was going on so that they wouldn’t be surprised when they were contacted. But, since I still didn’t have an official offer, I couldn’t yet give my boss notice. Keeping it secret was pretty tough, but everyone held their tongues, and the rumor mills never picked up the story. The last thing that I wanted was to have my boss hear about it from someone else.

Waiting, waiting, waiting.

Finally, I got the call on Wednesday, but my boss wasn’t in the office. Thursday, I met with him, and let him know.

He said that he’s sad to let me go, but it’s been great having me as a part of DSI and getting to know me over the last few years. My task at work now is to finish up the current phase of our website and write up a document detailing the many aspects of the things that I do at work.

I’m actually really looking forward to my last few weeks at DSI. It’s going to be fun to write up the “How to do Isaac’s Job” guide. In a few weeks, Yahoo! will be sending people to pack and move all my stuff and take it to storage. We’ve got to find an apartment, a temporary home for our two cats, and a million and one other logistical issues to iron out.

Here we go!

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