- Wells Fargo is looking to hire 2,500 technologists into its technology organization in 2022.
- Among them, the bank is looking to recruit 1,600 people in software engineering.
- Insider spoke with Wells Fargo’s new CTO, Steve Hagerman, about how to stand out.
The market for technologists on Wall Street is expected to tighten even more as Wells Fargo, the nation’s fourth-largest bank, seeks to recruit 1,600 new software engineers and managers.
Steve Hagerman, who was named Wells Fargo’s chief technology officer in January, told Insider the bank has 2,500 open positions across its technology organization, about two-thirds of which are for engineers and technicians. software managers.
Hagerman joined Wells Fargo in 2019 from JPMorgan Chase, where he spent more than 17 years. Prior to being named CTO at Wells – a position that oversees enterprise and product architecture across the bank and reports directly to Chief Technology Officer Saul Van Beurden – Hagerman led consumer lending technology.
Hagerman told Insider that the scale of hiring is nothing new for Wells Fargo — which has about 42,000 employees across its tech organization — given typical attrition rates. But the number of engineers the bank recruits has increased over time due to a change in the way Wells Fargo organizes its technology projects. Engineers made up 60% of technical workers in the bank a few years ago. This number has increased to 80%.
“We’ve made massive change, at the pace of thousands of development teams now implementing Scrum and operating in an agile fashion,” Hagerman told Insider.
An agile workflow is one in which small, cross-functional teams — or “scrums” — are given the freedom to independently collaborate on projects within a technology organization. Because it involves less top-down, siled decision-making, agile technology development can mean more roles for engineers and fewer for managers.
“At a constant level of investment, we want more technology output,” he added, referring to Wells Fargo’s $10 billion annual technology budget.
Know the basics
At Wells Fargo, a software engineering role typically requires at least two years of experience. A senior software engineer candidate may need four or more years, while a senior software engineer will need five or more years of experience, Hagerman said.
The interview process within engineering at Wells can include up to six rounds of conversations.
The first is an interview with the recruiter to get a sense of the candidate’s personality and technical abilities, Hagerman said.
This is followed by a panel of three to four stakeholders (including the hiring manager) assessing the candidate’s technical depth and ability to juggle multiple issues, personalities and different needs, he added. Sometimes these panels will be divided into individual interviews.
Candidates should be familiar with Java and Microsoft’s open source .net development platform, which are widely used across the enterprise. The bank’s artificial intelligence and machine learning teams typically use the statistics-oriented languages Python and R. Wells is also beginning to learn about the general-purpose languages Go and Rust.
And as Wells Fargo begins its cloud journey, striking deals with public cloud providers Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform, it will seek to have 50% of engineers cloud certified by the end of the year. .
But as with any great technology transition, there will be a period when the bank straddles modern technology stacks and legacy stacks.
The bank still depends on its mainframe, Hagerman said, adding that there are a number of open positions for developers familiar with COBOL, a coding language introduced more than 60 years ago, and IBM IMS, a system database unveiled 56 years ago.
How to stand out
Hagerman wants to see candidates be self-reliant and continually learn, whether on the clock or in their spare time.
During interviews, he will open his own page on Pluralsight, a technology workforce development website, and compare and contrast the courses he has taken with those of the candidate.
Specific courses that stand out include learning tracks that include agile, architecture, or cloud, as well as completing the foundation level of courses among public cloud providers, such as Azure Fundamentals, Amazon Web Services, and GCP, Hagerman said.
Candidates who reflect on their specific coding task within the larger technical ecosystem will stand out, in addition to understanding how changes to their specific area can impact other parts of the software development process. That’s why it’s a plus to take courses related to DevOps (a framework that considers the entire software development lifecycle) and domain-driven design (a software development approach based on subject expertise).
Additionally, applicants who share their GitHub URL stand apart from Hagerman, who said he likes to have an eye on developers’ project portfolio and code changes to understand how they approach problem solving.
Finally, don’t jump to conclusions or solutions too quickly.
“If I ask a candidate a question and they immediately jump to an answer, I’m already skeptical,” Hagerman said, adding that he tends to value candidates’ introspection and curiosity and enjoys two-way interviews where the candidate asks questions. back to the interviewer.