Thursday, December 25, 2008

Atlanta Based Web Design Firms Remain Exclusive

AJC: Atlanta firms struggle to lure top web designers

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
At one time they were just the scrappy little kids at large Web-design agencies.

Years later, they consider themselves some of the pickiest around when it comes to hiring for their own interactive Web shops.

“You have to be creative, and you have to enjoy what you do. That’s hard to find,” said Gabe Aldridge, one of three principals with The SuperGroup, which operates out of an eclectic high-tech office in Inman Park.

It’s an ironic situation — a company that is hiring but can’t find the right people with ease — given that the state’s unemployment rate in November rose to 7.5 percent. But The SuperGroup’s owners place most of the weight on the “interactive” part of their work — and finding local talent with those skills is still tough, they said.

Though Atlanta is ripe with technology companies, it does not have the same cache as New York or San Francisco when it comes to cutting-edge interactive design companies. That limits the talent pool and the attractiveness for out-of-town recruits.

Joe Schab, a managing director for digital marketing company LBi, said finding highly skilled designers is problematic regardless of economic conditions.

“This industry is growing so rapidly,” Schab said. “We’re in a perpetual war for talent. We largely have not had difficulty in attracting really good people. That being said, we also know those people are in demand elsewhere.”

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