Student Spotlight: Tracey Mullen Promoted to CEO at Abveris

It’s extremely rare for a CEO and company owner to voluntarily step down to enable someone else to lead the organization because he or she feels that person is more equipped for the role. But that’s exactly what happened in Tracey Mullen’s case at Abveris, a leader in contract research antibody discovery. She has now been promoted from Chief Operating Officer to Chief Executive Officer. 

Co-founder Garren Hilow, will now take over as the Chief Business Officer. He knew Tracey was the perfect fit for the CEO role because he wanted, “an elite scientist” to be leading his organization. 

“As we move out of our startup phase and continue to stay at the forefront of antibody discovery, we feel that it makes sense to focus on leadership with more of a scientific background–and an EMBA background provides a nice bonus,” says Mullen. 

Tracey has always had a strong passion for science and biology. She is a Chemical-Biological engineer from MIT who began her career in antibody discovery in an effort to combine all of her scientific passions into one role . “I started learning how the body fights illness and I thought it was fascinating. I decided to jump into a startup in the antibody space immediately after graduating college to learn even more, and I’ve been in antibody discovery since then.”

Abveris, a premier antibody discovery CRO, offers end-to-end mAb discovery services. The company operates in the biologic drug discovery space, specifically in antibody therapeutics for development. This includes two recent, ongoing campaigns for antibody discovery against the COVID-19 spike protein.

Tracey joined Abveris as Director of Antibody Discovery Operations in spring of 2018 after deciding to make a big career change and step away from the bench. “I ran into Garren–Abveris’ CEO at the time–just as he was looking to bring on an antibody scientist for a business role. I loved the position so much that it prompted me to jump into an MBA program.”

Quantic was Tracey’s choice because she could simultaneously pursue her career and educational goals. “I found the program to be incredibly valuable because I could stay in my field while fast-tracking my learning, as opposed to slowly learning it on my own or stepping away from industry to go back to school. The knowledge base I gained from the program helps me immensely in my new role as CEO.” 

Tracey’s goal as CEO of the company is to help build out an all-inclusive discovery platform to deliver development-ready drug candidates in industry-leading timelines. “We currently fit nicely into the hit generation space of the overall drug discovery process. Over the next year or so, as we continue to build out our platform and bring on new capabilities, we aim to expand our workflows to enable lead ID and lead optimization as well. Essentially, I want us to be able to grow into a larger space within the industry as a whole.”

Student Spotlight: A Deeper Meaning to Architectural Design

How would you define architecture? Steve Kredell, Principal Architect at McLeod Kredell Architects, has always believed that architecture is more than a simple building to shelter and protect its inhabitants. His innovative, sustainable and clean-lined designs have won countless awards. This year, he received global recognition when MKA was selected by Architectural Record as one of the top ten worldwide Design Vanguard firms.

Kredell’s passion for architecture started at a young age. His childhood walks with his father ignited his inspiration to look at the world differently. “He used to go out of his way to take me to look at what seemed to be very ordinary things,” says Kredell. “For instance, we looked at a lot of bridges when I was a kid. Through his eyes, I realized that there’s nothing “ordinary” or mundane about any human-made intervention. Those bridges weren’t just ways to get from one side to the other. They were beautiful in their own right, but, more importantly, they also enabled us to see the river, where we were going, and where we were coming from in a different way.  I believe this is what can be wonderful about buildings. They can help us see the environment and the world in a different way.” 

Photo courtesy McLeod Kredell Architects

This passion continued to grow and Kredell began collaborating with John McLeod, in the mid-90s, after meeting in graduate architecture school at Virginia Tech. The two created McLeod Kredell Architects, which is now built around the practice, teaching and community engagement of architecture. They believe, “Architecture grows out of its particular place and time–yet at its best it also transcends those limits. In the end, architecture should be inspiring–for the client, the architect, the builder, the passerby.”

This belief especially rings true now that the majority of people are spending more time at home than ever before. “We all need to ask more from our buildings – especially given the amount of time we spend indoors by ourselves now,” says Kredell. “We need to look at how buildings can be regenerative and how they can contribute to not just serving a need to house and protect us, but as part of a global environmental solution. But, we cannot lose sight of the fact that our buildings aren’t merely machines.  As our lives become dominated by screens and images, architecture has to continue to serve as a means to be connected to the natural world.” 

Connecting to the natural world has been a big initiative for MKA. The two architects bring a team of Middlebury College students to Penobscot Bay, Maine, for a weeklong design-build class each summer that results in such useful community projects like composting stations. It also has an ongoing partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Addison County and Middlebury College, where McLeod teaches, to design and build houses in the county for those in need.

“We believe that anyone and anywhere deserves design,” says Kredell. “We believe in spreading the wealth of architecture through teaching, working with private clients, partnering with communities, and building alongside students and volunteers. Good design should be for everyone. That’s a trend that I sincerely believe has to continue.” 

It was this passion for volunteering that actually led Kredell to pursue his MBA with Quantic. “My business partner and I started a non-profit program that brought community based designs to places and projects that typically wouldn’t have access to design. This opened my eyes to help me understand that we weren’t being as creative with the “design” of this new venture because we didn’t have an understanding of the nuances of a new business. I believed that Quantic’s MBA would allow me to be more creative and, really, to have a new experience and more well-rounded world view.”

As the world continues to change, so does the future and importance of architectural design. “We need to realize that architecture at its best allows us to touch the world in so many different ways. Just like those original bridges, architecture allows us to understand our world and nature in a more meaningful way. I think that’s more important than ever.” 

The Quantic community has no doubt that McLeod Kredell Architects will continue to push architectural boundaries and their designs will continue to inspire others to look at the world in a different light.

Student Spotlight: Dr. Matt Young Helps Those Harmed by the Healthcare System

“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you’ve imagined.” – Henry David Thoreau. 

The ethos of pursuing one’s dreams and helping others along the way has been a guiding force for MBA Student Dr. Matt Young, M.D., J.D., CMQ, Esq.

Dr. Young certainly is realizing his dreams. He has already achieved national recognition in the fields of patient safety and healthcare quality, has been named a National Quality Scholar by the American College of Medical Quality, serves as a peer reviewer for the Journal of Patient Safety, has published in multiple medical texts, and, in his spare time, is a classically trained concert pianist. 

His next adventure? He is now one of the trial lawyers at the nationally renowned law firm Ross Feller Casey LLP, where he represents patients, families, and their loved ones who have been catastrophically harmed by the healthcare system, a cause that is extremely close to his heart. 

After Dr. Young graduated from Harvard Medical School, he became the eighteenth doctor in a family of doctors spanning three generations and two continents. However, after he lost his own father to medical malpractice, Dr. Young went to Harvard Law School, where he received his JD degree, and became an attorney and patient safety advocate. During his medical and legal training, he would learn that medical errors are one of the leading causes — if not the leading cause — of death and disability in the United States. “My father died as a result of medical malpractice, which has been shown to be one of the major causes of morbidity and mortality in our country. Now, I get to fight for so many families like my own who have suffered harm at the hands of our healthcare system,” he said.

Dr. Young describes Ross Feller Casey LLP as one of the best law firms in the country when it comes to representing plaintiffs in medical malpractice actions. “Their reputation, record-setting results, integrity, and team of talented lawyers and doctors make them an incredible powerhouse for plaintiffs. I look forward to helping catastrophically injured patients hold the healthcare system accountable. Ultimately, the pen is mightier than the scalpel.”

Dr. Young believes Quantic was definitely one of the nudges he needed to pursue this next chapter. “Plaintiffs’ work is in many ways an entrepreneurial endeavor. The Quantic MBA program gave me the courage and skills to make this daunting and dramatic career transition in the middle of a global pandemic. From a curricular perspective, it has great modules on key topics like entrepreneurship, marketing, and business strategy, the sunk cost fallacy, and calculating opportunity cost, which all factored into my decision to forsake my medical career and instead take care of patients in a very different but immensely important way.”

There was also an overflowing amount of Quantic peer support from his classmates. “I posted to our class’s Slack and asked my classmates for advice, and they gave me amazing advice and support about making this career change. I was getting real life and career advice from really accomplished people from three different continents and time zones all coming from diverse industries who had made multiple career changes themselves.” 

Overall, Dr. Young has been thrilled with the energetic and entrepreneurial spirit of the Quantic experience. “I thought the most valuable education I would ever get would come from spending 11 years at Harvard and getting those three degrees from their college, med school, and law school, at the cost of being saddled with a hefty amount of student loan debt; but never did I think that one of the most invaluable and transformative experiences would come in the form of a free online MBA. Without a doubt, my Quantic MBA experience has been just as valuable as the education I received at Harvard. Studying with Quantic has been an incredibly invaluable and rewarding experience and has helped me formulate a new vision for myself on how best to leverage my medical and legal training to help others.”

We are so excited to see how Dr. Young’s next chapter unfolds as he brings his powerful personal narrative and unparalleled professional training into the courtroom to fight for families harmed by the healthcare system. We are sure that as he goes confidently in the direction of his dreams, he will help countless patients and families find justice and peace.

Student Spotlight: Chief Scientist Helps Broaden Biotechnology Field

Bit Bio, the U.K.-based startup, only needed three weeks to raise $41.5 million in a Series A funding round that will be used to support the company’s goal to transition biology into engineering. 

This synthetic biology team was founded by stem cell biologist and neurosurgeon, Mark Kotter, in 2016 to commercialize biotechnology that can reduce the cost and increase the production capacity for differentiated human cells. These cells can be used in targeted therapies and as a method to accelerate pharmaceutical drug discovery. Bit Bio’s goal is to be able to reproduce every human cell type, boosting basic research and enabling a new generation of cell therapies.

How can this type of cell therapy specifically help? By generating every cell type in the human body, this biotechnology will help unlock solutions for tackling cancer, autoimmune diseases and neurodegenerative disorders. Bit Bio’s approach will also help reduce expenses, aid drug discovery, and decrease the reliance on animal studies. 

Quantic alum, Grant Belgard, is the Head of Bioinformatics at Bit Bio. The company’s website explains the centrality of computation: “Bit Bio represents the two fields: coding and biology that determine the identity of every human cell. Ultimately, bits are the building blocks of code, just as cells are the building blocks of life. This is reflective of what Bit Bio does: precise reprogramming of human stem cells.” 

Belgard is also the Chief Scientist and CEO of The Bioinformatics CRO. The company was developed as the subject of his Capstone project in Quantic’s Executive MBA program. The flexibility of the curriculum enabled Belgard to learn, while simultaneously building his new company and pursuing his professional goals.

Now, Belgard’s goal for The Bioinformatics CRO is to streamline biomedical research worldwide. This represents a new breed of contract research organization that offers quality customized bioinformatics services to global biotechnology companies.

Biotechnology companies, like Bit Bio and The Bioinformatics CRO, will help merge biology and engineering and can help bring about long-awaited precision for stem cell research and help improve the lives of millions.

The Quantic community is thrilled for Grant and his colleagues. We can’t wait to see what he does next and how this combination of data science and biology will help code cells for the well-being of humanity.

Thank you for Helping #ChangeTheCourse

Our Quantic community is always at the forefront of creative innovations and this has been especially evident during the COVID-19 pandemic. To spotlight these incredible efforts, we asked students and alumni to share stories about what they’re doing to #ChangeTheCourse and help their communities and industries during these unprecedented times. 

Across the globe, Quantic students truly are making a difference. In their industries, they are developing apps to make curbside takeout possible for restaurants, enabling video conferences for grade school classrooms, and even inventing medical blankets to monitor patients’ vitals. They are helping their communities with fundraisers, virtual trivia nights, and connecting with peers to make sure hospital workers receive needed medical supplies. 

Students and alumni even created the #kindoutcovid19 campaign where hundreds of leaders volunteered to give free career advice and share professional expertise. Acts like these are the silver linings throughout this pandemic. Not only are they lifting up individual communities, they are investing their time, energy, and expertise to help other professionals. 

We are not alone in saying how much we appreciate all of these creative efforts to instill hope in a time of anxiety and uncertainty. The pandemic may not be over, but we will all continue to play our part to demonstrate the power of kindness, creativity, and innovation to make for a better, brighter future. 

Remote Work and Leadership in the Time of COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has swiftly and completely turned the world on its head. Businesses shuttered and those who were able, transitioned to working from home. New challenges arose and managers and executives around the world have been forced to adapt in order to lead their teams remotely. Quantic surveyed these leaders — over 450 managers, executives, and professionals who also happen to be students and alumni of our MBA and Executive MBA programs. The emphasis of this survey was on the 90 percent who went from working in an office to working and managing their teams from home. 

The move to working from home comes with a distinct set of challenges — coincidentally, these challenges are frequently cited as benefits of working in an office. For example, some of the top challenges faced by leaders as they worked from home were communication, collaboration, productivity, and creativity — all aspects that were seen as highly valuable to working in an office environment. 

There were also some hopeful results — most Quantic students felt relatively confident in their employment status and had optimism about the future, with nearly half (49 percent) saying that while they felt COVID-19 was changing their industry forever, 38 percent felt it was evolving into something new, and 33 percent feel their industry is changing for the better.  

Watch the video for a look at the top insights on career and industry outlooks, and what it’s been like to lead and manage remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Download the PDF version of the results here.

These acts of racism, police brutality and hatred must end

Over the last couple weeks, we’ve experienced deep anger and sadness following the murder of George Floyd. And simultaneously, we’ve been inspired and felt a surge of hopefulness at seeing the response of our nation, fed up with systemic racism and police brutality, standing together to protest for long overdue change. How do we hold on to these disparate feelings, images, realities? And what do we do with them? 

One thing is certain: this hatred, this intolerance, this complete and willful ignorance — it must end. 

While George’s name has dominated the news cycle in the US, there are countless others, here and around the world, who like George, have suffered simply because of the color of their skin. We aren’t experts in this matter, nor do we have the answers for how we keep the momentum from recent protests to enact lasting change. Regardless, we feel it’s necessary to communicate our unequivocal and unwavering solidarity with the Black community. 

As a global institution, the diversity of our students and alumni is what makes us what we are — in fact, it’s one of our greatest strengths. As an organization, we are turning a critical gaze inwards, asking ourselves how we can do better to acknowledge and address the ways in which systemic racism clouds our vision and holds us back from reaching our collective potential. 

There are many organizations with extensive experience in addressing racism, civil rights, and creating opportunities for the Black community while amplifying their voices — and they are far more deserving of the spotlight at this moment than we are. For that reason we’ve donated to Black Girls Code, Black & Brown Founders, and the National Museum of African American History & Culture. We are taking time to listen to them, to donate, to reflect, to internalize our own faults, and take action — and we implore those in our Quantic community to do the same. 

An App A Day Keeps Boredom at Bay

The coronavirus has a lot of us sitting around the house these days, scrolling through our phones or tablets. Skimming Instagram and Twitter have become common ways to pass the time, and while you may not think more screen time is the answer to the quarantine blues, some apps are proving to have benefits for the mind, body, and improving daily life. Quantic students have developed apps that help make dinner possible, ease anxiety, and get you back on track with your fitness goals during this crisis. 

Kyoo

In direct response to the global COVID-19 crisis, Quantic MBA Alum, Albert Brown, and his team launched Kyoo Curbside. Kyoo has helped hundreds of businesses rapidly set up online ordering with no-contact, curbside pickup orders. Because of its popularity, it was fast-tracked by Square to become an official ordering partner and it is now the only free product listed. Merchants can set up their store in a snap. Items import automatically from their Square menu and they can accept orders right away. Customers can place orders on mobile, web, kiosk, or simply by text message. They receive instant text message updates to keep them moving through the queue and provide clear instructions to get their order fulfilled. 

Hero Trainer

Staying home? Stay active! Quantic MBA Alum, Yash Jain, developed Hero Trainer to help us reach our fitness goals. The mobile app allows users to earn rewards in their favorite video games for exercising. A little walk around the house, or on the treadmill can earn people premium paid reward codes. The app tracks your steps on a walk or run. You earn points for each step and exchange those for reward codes to your favorite games.

Mooditude

We could all use a little mood boost to help cope with quarantine. EMBA Learner, Kamran Qamar, developed a clinically designed self-help app for depression and anxiety. Mooditude helps you identify and change your thinking using transformative Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). For lasting cure, you can build mood-lifting habits using goals and routines. When you feel stuck, go deep and find solutions to your specific problem within the dozens of psychiatrist developed programs. 

It’s exciting and uplifting to see our students take action and find ways to stay productive, engaged, and mindful while life — in some respects — stands still. Here’s to those who #ChangeTheCourse. 

Blankets: Not Just for Snuggling

When we think of blankets, we often think of cozy nights and hot chocolate. But what if they had the power to change the course of healthcare technology, especially during the coronavirus pandemic? Executive MBA student, Olivia Lin, had this exact same thought. She wanted to combine her strong tech background and desire to create textiles with a purpose. Olivia and fellow EMBA student, Edward Shim, soon launched their start-up, Studio 1 Labs, specializing in cutting-edge textile technology. 

Their first product? A “smart” bed sheet that can be used in hospitals to monitor patients’ vitals. This has been crucial during the COVID-19 crisis because it continuously monitors for respiratory distress. The bed sheet detects respiratory patterns and transmits the data to a computer terminal for healthcare workers. With advanced data accuracy and analytics, this technology can also predict the onset of health decline and emergencies like apnea, heart attack and stroke.

Olivia is originally from Taipei, Taiwan and grew up in Canada. She studied psychology at the University of Toronto, and earned a Master’s and later a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from the University of Waterloo. While studying psychology, Olivia was drawn to subject matter known as Human Factors, a field focused on the application of psychology in society.

When asked how and why she made the transition from psychology to starting a textile tech company, Olivia laughed — the transition even surprised her. She had a friend who worked in textile technology and saw how she combined fabric, art, and modern technology to create clothing with a purpose. This sparked Olivia’s interest and curiosity and she asked for her friend’s help in learning how to sew fabrics infused with tech. 

While completing her Ph.D., Olivia met Edward, and her hobby soon turned into a business idea as the two began researching the commercialization of fabric sensor technology. They had identified a growing trend in healthcare of using everyday objects as tools for monitoring vitals and felt that textiles might just be the perfect canvas for such a device. This kind of application had particular relevance to Edward, who, when serving in the military, sustained an injury which left him experiencing respiratory issues. He was well aware of the processes in place for patients to have their breathing monitored and knew there had to be a better way. Both he and Olivia saw a need for improvement in this space and after enlisting the help of a few more colleagues, Studio 1 Labs was born.

“There was a lot of exploration and experimentation and finally we found an application that really works,” said Olivia.

Studio 1 Labs’ fabric sensor bed sheets are a glimpse at the future of health technology. These sensors monitor a patient’s respiration pattern, location, movement, and prolonged pressure. The patient does little more than lie in bed and his or her vitals are measured and reported. This is especially important for elderly patients, who are less able to adjust their lives for doctors to gather the data they need to make an informed diagnosis and treatment plan.

Beyond product development, Olivia had also recognized the need to increase her knowledge of business and strategy. This is when she decided to pursue an Executive MBA. With Studio 1 Labs having locations in both Canada and Taiwan, Olivia was constantly traveling and Quantic’s mobile-first design enabled her to learn no matter where she was. 

“Being an entrepreneur, I felt like I had gaps in my knowledge and I couldn’t keep pace in conversations with executives and potential partners to the degree I needed to. I wanted more of the knowledge that would enable me to carry on and lead these conversations.” said Olivia.

Olivia’s impressive efforts in creating this business have not gone unrecognized. She was featured by Girls in Tech Taiwan 40 Under 40 and Studio 1 Labs won the Markham Board of Trade Aspire Startup Award in 2018. Outside of being the Executive Director of Studio 1 Labs, Olivia was a mentor for the City of Waterloo’s initiative, Girls in STEAM, a program that promoted tech and other STEAM careers to local girls to spark their interest at a young age. Olivia now lives in Taiwan, as she continues her rewarding (and challenging) entrepreneurial journey and helps to continue to #ChangeTheCourse of healthcare technology. 

Survey: Quantic Students Respond about Effects of the Covid-19 Pandemic on Employment Outlook

How the Covid-19 pandemic is impacting the employment market for our community.

What we did

Quantic School of Business and Technology conducted a survey with students and alumni to better understand how the Covid-19 pandemic is impacting our community in regards to the employment market. Our goals were twofold: to better understand how and to what extent the pandemic is affecting our community, and to identify any strategies that could be of use. Here are our findings. Note: percentages reported below have been rounded to the nearest whole number. 

Who responded

Our community is particularly aware of and involved in the employment market — one of the main reasons people undertake an MBA program is to move up in their career or enter a new field. And because of the level of seniority and achievement of our students and alumni, many are involved on the hiring side as well. We sent this survey out to 5,000 Quantic students and alumni, and heard back from 1,743 of them.

25% (443) were exclusively seeking employment
25% (433) were exclusively hiring 
10% (177)  were involved in both activities
39% (685) were involved in neither

We got broad industry representation with respondents from agriculture and the arts to travel, transportation and telecom.  

What we learned

Sentiment

Overall, there was a drastic shift in how people feel about the state of the employment market. 

The numbers have flipped: Prior to the pandemic, over 60% were optimistic about the market; after, that number has dropped to less than 10%.  Prior to the pandemic, less than 10% were pessimistic; that number has soared to over 60%.

While that is a dramatic change, there are nuances as well: 

  • 18% of respondents didn’t change their overall opinion of the market (between 15 – 22 percent for each segment). 
  • A very small percentage, 3.3%, revised their opinions favorably, going from pessimistic to optimistic or neutral, or from neutral to optimistic. 
  • Those that were not actively involved in either hiring or seeking had the highest percentage of negatively revised opinions at 85% going from optimistic to neutral or pessimistic, or neutral to pessimistic. 

When asked to comment on this there was a wide range of responses – here are a few insights. Note: quotes below lightly edited for spelling, grammar, and clarity:

Analytic Observations

  • I believe Covid-19 will affect the job market globally. Home working could help cross country hiring and balance/reduce the global unemployment rate. Exceptional times require exceptional measures.
  • I believe we will have to adapt to the new normal and that presents the opportunity for us to re-think our mid to long term strategy and innovate accordingly.
  • I felt the job market before the pandemic was already heavily over-extended. In my opinion, it was artificial and unnatural for a bull market to rage on for ten years with no significant correction. For over a year, I was convinced a recession was going to happen but did not know what would be the catalyst for it.

Emerging Economies

  •  In West Africa, there’s a high probability of decreased funding in the immediate future to areas of public health and social intervention.
  • Personally, I feel this pandemic has come at a time when Kenya is already economically on its knees. This virus has killed our hopes of recovering from our former status, and we are expecting very many deaths due to starvation and suicide.
  • While I anticipate that developed countries will be fine in a few months, I feel developing countries (South Africa, Nigeria and India especially) will be suffering the effects of this pandemic for years to come. 

Work/Life

  • It seems like parents are having an extra hard time with children at home and still trying to work. Schools here are having us home school so it takes a lot of time and energy. Productivity is down and stress is very high. It makes work and school difficult.

Industry Specific Insights

  • Our industry (management consulting / leadership training) has been hit hard. Especially at smaller consulting firms, we’re seeing a lot of lost revenue and layoffs as corporations are pulling from training budgets to shore up core operations in this downturn. 
  • Our information technology field is much better than other markets and even possibilities to glow providing the solution during/after the Covid-19 problem. 
  • Staying in healthcare I feel optimistic. Potentially switching careers I feel less optimistic. Overall, at peace. 
  • The spread of the virus will change business dynamics, especially in the segments of the traditional heavy industry as steel for instance. The virus will also weigh on the overall economy much more than the 2008 crisis. 
  • My law firm provides services to Fortune 500 companies, financial institutions, and high-net-worth individuals. We expect a downturn over the coming weeks (perhaps months) in demand for our services. This will therefore impact the need for professionally qualified staff. 
  • Within the food industry, it’s going to be a very steep uphill battle to get things back to the way they were.  

Strategy

  • We are a startup. We now aim to be self-sustainable rather than grow quickly because of the VC climate.
  • There is clearly a lot of unknown and I fully expect companies will either wait out or reevaluate their business model and roles needed to support it.
  • We realigned expectations and targets. The hiring policy reflects this, resulting in significantly reduced hiring for Q2 and Q3. We review strategy quarterly and depending on the situation in the coming months, further changes can happen, positive or negative.

Noticeable change in activity

The events are also altering how people interact. For seekers, 74% have noticed a change in hiring processes, including interview delays or cancellations, lack of announcements, or virtual interviews. Of the 428* people in that group, 24% of those who were seeking employment have decided to pause their search. 

On the hiring side, 53% have seen slowed activity, either putting hiring on hold, canceling interviews, or instituting a hiring freeze. 

Hiring Observations

  • With so much current uncertainty we are not making any major changes. We are taking a wait-and-see approach and minimizing expenses.
  • Our company (1500+) has instituted a hiring freeze, as have many others. Smaller firms in the industry are furloughing staff.
  • I am a hiring manager and have been told by my company that junior/associate level positions are on hold (I have one open position that has been temporarily frozen) until the “shelter in place” order is lifted and we can return to the office. Higher-level positions may still be filled, but all interviews will be over video calls.
  • Overall, I am very apprehensive to hire because I do not know the long term effects. 

What can you do?

This data doesn’t exist in a vacuum. While the volatility is obvious and there’s been a clear change in sentiment, here are some ways we can apply what we’ve learned to benefit ourselves and the Quantic community. 

Know you’re not alone.

One of the most important findings is that this is happening to everyone — even those who aren’t actively looking or hiring have felt the impact. 60%, of our community is directly impacted, and the other 40% are also noticing significant changes in the market. 

Many of the comments express similar thoughts around the changes that are taking place, including delays in interviews, hiring freezes, and slowdown in overall market activity. Even if you are negatively affected by what’s happening, it’s not just you. 

Leverage the network

If and when you become aware of opportunities, share them widely. You never know who’s looking or who you might be able to help. If you hear of something you think might be a perfect fit for someone in particular, let them know about it, even if you’re not aware they’re on the market. You never know if they are looking for an opportunity. In addition to your regular channels, you can share opportunities and reach out directly to Quantic classmates and alumni in the online student portal.

Prepare for opportunity. 

There is still some activity happening: 15% of those who are involved in hiring indicated that they have not changed anything in regards to hiring or are still hiring as usual, and in a follow-up survey, 14% of respondents have increased the rate of hiring or are backfilling positions due to quarantine during this time. If you do want or need to make a change, do what you can to optimize yourself as a candidate. 

  • Research the market. Analyze job announcements in your field and identify the core competencies that are in high demand. Review your history for ways that you’ve demonstrated those skills in your career.
  • Update your resume. Make sure your Quantic career profile, resume, and LinkedIn profile are up to date, and draft a cover letter that you can customize as needed. 
  • Professional Development. If you have an experience or skill gap, now might be the time to fill it through education, or volunteering for a project at work to learn a particular technique (Remote project execution – check!)
  • Proactively contact your references. It’s always easier to reach out ahead of time, stay in touch and catch up without pressure so that there’s no rush when the time comes. 

If you have any questions about this survey, or ideas for Quantic that you’d like to share, please get in touch


* Percentage based on round one of survey respondents