It helps to be innovative at the core, says Chris Scalia, Leidos' Senior Vice President of Talent Acquisition. The Reston, Va.-based defense company views their ability to technically innovate as a critical aspect of their overall corporate culture, not just an engineering culture or a technology culture, Scalia says. Leidos engineers might work on cybersecurity, electronic health systems, or drones.
When it comes to competing with "pure tech" companies for engineering talent, Scalia added that it's the defense work that Leidos does that sets the company apart. Being driven by a mission to help serve Leidos' clients, like the U.S. government, is what Leidos uses to seal the deal with candidates who are on the fence about working for them or working for, say, a "unicorn" tech company.
All of these companies discussed a few things: Making technology a core part of the business and overall culture; providing training and development opportunities to existing engineers, through several different formal and informal programs; and making sure people realize the scale of the problems they're solving, from both a technological and a mission or customer base perspective.
What's your take on culture? These companies all are very large and have their own programs and efforts to make them great places to work, but what have you seen work well? What doesn't work? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.
If you'd like to learn more about the secret sauce behind how these companies operate with employees spread out around the world, read my other post with the executives, concentrating on how they did distributed technology right.
This article originally appeared on LinkedIn
Greg Leffler is the Senior Editor for Software Engineering and Technology for LinkedIn
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