York Thought Leadership Blog

Scrum Certification Equals Transformation

Posted by Danielle Toste on Tue, Mar 18, 2014 @ 13:03 PM

Scrum. Now that is an interesting word. It makes you think, what is scrum? Well, scrum is an Agile framework used for completing complex projects. It is often referred to as transforming the world of work. A product owner creates a prioritized wish list called a product backlog. The team pulls a small chunk from the top of that wish list and decides how to implement those pieces. The team then meets daily to assess their daily progress. Once the project is complete, they review and then select a new chunk of tasks to accomplish. Scrum ensures that the most valuable work has been completed once the project ends or funding for a project runs out.


So, now that we understand the fundamentals of Scrum, why should you become a Certified ScrumMaster?

First off, on average, a Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) salary is between $70,000- $100,000 and can even go higher! Secondly, you are a leader. Your job is to make sure that Scrum is understood by all members of your team and to train your team. The ScrumMaster helps everyone improve to make the Scrum team more productive and valuable.          

 How do you become a CSM?

You must take a CSM course from a Certified Scrum Trainer and be able to demonstrate your progress though the online CSM test. Then, you must attend a two-day course taught by a Certified Scrum Trainer and pass an exam. Once you have completed these 2 steps, you will be able to complete your Scrum Alliance membership profile. You can find a list of courses here.

Once you have become certified, you will be eligible to join a user group, contribute an article to the Scrum Alliance community, attend Scrum Alliance gatherings, and participate in the CSM LinkedIn group. By having access to all of these resources, it will further enhance your knowledge and skills ensuring that practices and principles you are responsible for implementing are being continuously improved on.

A CSM should be able to handle 2 or 3 teams at a time. Even though there isn’t a set list of what ScrumMasters overlook, here are a few examples of questions he/she should be asking themselves to make sure they are accomplishing their goals:

  • How is my Product Owner doing?
    • Is the Product Backlog prioritized according to his/her latest thinking?
    • Is the backlog an information radiator, clearly visible to everyone?
    • Can you help radiate by showing everyone printouts?
  • How is my team doing?
    • Do team members hold each other accountable to high standards, and challenge each other to grow?
    • Are the team’s task estimates and/or task board up-to-date?
    • Has the team kept focus on acceptance criteria?
  • How are our engineering practices doing?
  • How is the organization doing?

By asking yourself the questions above as a CSM, you can see where you are making a difference, see the work transform into a smooth process, and advance your career.

For more information, visit http://www.scrumalliance.org/ 

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Topics: IT consulting, IT Certifications

View York Solutions Jobs of the Week

Posted by Danielle Toste on Thu, Mar 13, 2014 @ 10:03 AM

Position: Project Manager SAP/ Cutover/ Release

A client is seeking a Project Manager SAP/ Cutover/ Release manger for a 6-9 month contract located in Brooklyn Park, MN. This person will need to be able to coordinate/manage the client’s agile marketing and other release cycles.

This position was posted on 3/10/2014. Click Here for more details!describe the image

Position: Sr. Business Analyst

A client in Minneapolis, MN is looking for a Business Analyst in the healthcare industry. This candidate will have at least 8 years of experience working in large, complex organizations and has worked with business stakeholders to gather and complete artifacts. This person preferably
has at least 2 years in healthcare experience, Project Management experience, and claims processing knowledge.   

This position was posted on 3/12/2014. Click Here for more details!


Want to know more? View all of our open IT contract positions by visiting our Job Seekers page!

Topics: Blogs, ITJobs, IT Job Search, IT Hiring, Information Technology, IT Skills, York Solutions jobsoftheweek

IT Hiring Whitepaper Infographic

Posted by Danielle Toste on Tue, Mar 11, 2014 @ 09:03 AM


Check out what IT leaders had to to say about hiring expectations for IT in 2014 in a recent poll!   




IT Hiring Expectations


What are your predictions for IT hiring in 2014? Leave your thoughts below!

Topics: Industry Trends, Industry News, IT Hiring

The 5 Great Myths of Information Technology Professionals

Posted by Danielle Toste on Tue, Mar 4, 2014 @ 11:03 AM

Nerd. Loner. Computer geek. When people think of someone working in the information technology field, at least one of those terms often comes to mind. While some people might fit this stereotype, the majority do not. Here is a list of some of the most common myths about IT professionals.


describe the imageLack of Social Skills - Movies and television shows have played a large part in shaping one’s impression of an IT professional’s demeanor. They always portray people who are by themselves and go home to play computer games all night. 

In reality, it is quite the contrary. IT professionals regularly interact with many different people. Since IT is needed in all types of businesses, most IT professionals have worked with diverse clients and need to know how to communicate with all backgrounds to complete jobs.


  • Writing Code is All They Do - While some people in this profession sit at a computer all day long and write code, not everyone does. Testers, business analysts, project managers, team leaders and technical writers are just a few professions that do not involve writing code!


  • There is a Mythical Career Path You Must Take - First, get a degree or certification. Then, get hired as a level 1 tech support. Move up to level 2 and 3. Next, become a network or system administrator. Actually, there is no clear, linear path for IT professionals to reach the top. Most careers do not have such a straight line path to success. The ability to adapt and pursue new opportunities is more important than what title you hold.


  • Degrees and Certifications Prepare You for a Role in IT - While school and certifications are needed for specific professions in the IT world, not all require a degree. Being able to implement solutions will get you hired. You might need to consider internships as a way to get experience and your foot in the door.


  • You Can Fix Any Electronic Device – Yes, an IT professional’s default fixing an electronic devicespecialty is technology; however, that does not necessarily mean they know EVERY device and how to fix it. There is a wide range of specialties within the IT industry, so that does not guarantee that all IT professionals know the same things. Some people know a lot about a lot, but that may have nothing to do with them being an IT

Do you agree with our list? What are some other misconceptions you've come across?

Topics: Blogs, IT industry, Fun, Information Technology, York Solutions

York Solutions is Looking for a New Account Manager in Chicago

Posted by Briana Perrino on Fri, Feb 28, 2014 @ 13:02 PM

York Solutions is an IT consulting firm unlike any other. Or at least that's what we are told by our clients and employees! Our unique business model separates us from our competition and has enabled York to triple in size in the past 2 years. 

If you are a talented sales person with a strong work ethic and would like to understand what we are told makes us different, whether you are happy at your company or not, we encourage you to meet with us. 

We offer a competitive compensation package that includes base salary, commission, and benefits, but we pride ourselves on our unique company culture that gives employees the flexibility to have quality work-life balance while having opportunities for professional development and growth.


  • 2+ years of experience in the IT staffing industry
  • 1+ year(s) in a sales role
  • Proven success in developing new business relationships
  • Bachelor’s Degree


  • Vast knowledge of the Chicago market
  • Staff augmentation experience
  • Technically sound knowledge of IT concepts and the latest trends

York Solutions, LLC is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


Topics: Company News

See York Solutions Jobs of the Week!

Posted by Danielle Toste on Thu, Feb 27, 2014 @ 09:02 AM

Take a look at York Solutions Jobs of the Week!

Position: Sr. Operations Analyst

Client is looking for Sr. Operations Analyst for a 6-9 month contract in Minnetonka, MN. This describe the imageperson will provide support in managed file transfer and Enterprise Scheduling Tools. This person should have experience with at least one of the following skills:  Enterprise Job Scheduling Tool, ETL tool (such as Informatica), and managed file transfer tool. Candidate needs a proven track record in monitoring and management of enterprise systems and will participate in planning and support for a complex operating environment that incorporates a diverse set of hardware and software platforms.

This position was posted on 2/25/2014. Click Here for more details!

Position: Sr. Desktop Engineer

A client in Minnetonka, MN is looking for a Sr. Desktop Engineer who has experience in app deployment, operating system deployment, scripting, app-v, and virtualization. This person will be responsible for performing application packaging and L3 support for COTS application software. Must have a firm understanding of Microsoft’s group policies with experience in
desktop virtualization technology and advance knowledge of Windows networking,
domains, system policies, trusts, name resolution, and advanced TCP/IP.

This position was posted on 2/25/2014. Click Here for more details!

Position: SAP Tester

A client in St. Paul, MN is looking for a SAP Tester. This person will be doing hands-on testing and helping coordinate testing for the Record to Report process team. Candidate will coordinate, run, and validate test scripts.

This position was posted on 2/25/2014. Click Here for more details!

Position: .Net Developer

A .Net Developer is needed for 6-9 months for a client in Minneapolis, MN. This person must have a Bachelor’s degree in computer science or related field, knowledge and experience in web-based development, and at least 1-2 years with .NET 4.5 and C#. This person must have strong organizational skills, be detail oriented, have the ability to work independently and as a team member, and be able to perform a leadership role on a team.

This position was posted on 2/27/2014. Click Here
for more details!


Interested? View all of our open IT contract positions by visiting our Job Seekers page!

Topics: Blogs, ITJobs, Job Search, IT Job Search, Information Technology, York Solutions, IT Staffing, York Solutions jobsoftheweek

2014 Dice Salary Survey - The Perks of Being a Technology Professional

Posted by Danielle Toste on Tue, Feb 25, 2014 @ 11:02 AM

Great news for technology professionals! Salaries are going up and unemployment remains
low, according to Dice’s Tech Salary Survey. The average salary for technology professionals has grown over $20,000 in the past 10 years and is around $87,500, a three percent increase from 2012.

With about two-thirds of IT professionals feeling confident they can easily progress their career, the competitive market leads to a boost in pay increases and employers are recognizing that they need to find ways to retain their employees.

Last year, about 45% of tech professionals said they had a pay increase sparked by a merit raise. And, ever more interesting, trends show that pay increases are more likely to happendescribe the image early in a technology professional’s career with bonuses being given to more tenured professionals. But, either way, tech professionals usually can look forward to some sort of
compensation increase!

So where can IT professionals look at earning the most money?

  • California still holds the top position thanks to Silicon Valley. On average, a tech’s salary is about $108,000. That is a 7.25% increase from last year!
  • Minneapolis ranks 16 in the United States for highest paid metropolitan area with professionals
    earning around $87,000 a year.
  • Chicago is right behind them with salary averages around $85,000.
  • St. Louis is ranked 29th with an average of $76,000. 

The Skills That Are Paying Big Money

There have been many recent articles published about the top skills that IT professionals describe the imageshould have in 2014. Big data is the most talked about skill and these professionals have the highest pay checks. Companies understand the importance of big data and that it plays a major role in their competitive plans, which leads to higher pay—a solid six-figure salary.

What other skills are paying a six-figure salary?

Cloud, mobile, DevOps, design, and project management are also great skills to have this year that can help ensure a healthy yearly salary.


For a look at the full survey, click here.

Topics: Blogs, ITJobs, IT consulting, IT industry, Industry Trends, IT Certifications, Industry News, IT Job Search, IT Hiring, Information Technology, IT Skills

Take a Look at York Solutions Jobs of the Week!

Posted by Danielle Toste on Wed, Feb 19, 2014 @ 16:02 PM

Position: VP of Infrastructure

Client is looking for VP of Infrastructure in Chicago, IL. This person will oversee network, security, Unix/Linux environment, storage, and data center provider management. Candidate will ensure operational stability, availability, and performance. Must understand the impact of infrastructure on business operations. Requirements include a bachelor’s degree, minimum of 15 years experience in IT operations and/or IT infrastructure, and experience with transaction focused business would be preferred.

This position was posted on 2/17/2014. Click Here for more details!

job vacancyPosition: Sr. Net Developer

A client in Minneapolis, MN is looking for a contract to hire role. This person must have at least 6 years of experience with Net Developer, 3.5 years of C# Framework, and SQL development experience.

This position was posted on 2/18/2014. Click Here for more details!

Position: SAP Data Services

A client in St. Paul, MN is looking for several SAP Data Services resources that have a wide range of experience levels but must have hands on experience with SAP Data Services.

This position was posted on 2/18/2014. Click Here for more details!

Position: Security Consultant

A security consultant is needed for 9+ months for a client in Brooklyn Park, MN. This person must have Splunk knowledge and ability to write rules in Splunk and Arcsight.

This position was posted on 2/19/2014. Click Here for more details!


Want to know more? View all of our open IT contract positions by visiting our Job Seekers page!

Topics: Blogs, ITJobs, Job Search, IT Job Search, IT Hiring, IT Skills, York Solutions jobsoftheweek

Meet York Solutions Employee: Bryan Binstock

Posted by Danielle Toste on Tue, Feb 18, 2014 @ 09:02 AM

Knowing the people of our company is important in understanding us and our culture. So this week, we would like for you to get to know Bryan Binstock, Principal Consultant at York

Can you tell us a little bit about your role?

I initially started as a Principal Consultant with a client of York.  My responsibilities included Bryan Binstockworking with the current consultants by creating a ‘York’ culture within the client culture, as well as to expand the York presence within the client.  At the end of 2014, my
role changed to be more focused on expanding the York presence through adding
incremental value to new departments.  I am also the on-site Think IT contact for ALL resources, including employees and consultants from other firms.  With the help of Jim Spinner and Jim Hanselman, we have expanded both the York and Think IT presence within the company, and will continue to do so in the coming months and years!

Where did you go to school at?

DeVry Institute in Kansas City, MO – graduating with a BS is Computer Information Systems (CIS)

What drew you to York Solutions?

I was initially introduced to York Solutions through Think IT.  I had just relocated back to the Twin Cities, after spending the last 17 years working for American Express in Phoenix, AZ.  I started my career as a developer and then moved into more of a capability architect
capacity.  When I started looking for my next career move, I knew I really didn’t want to continue doing what I had been doing before.  I wanted to be in more of a customer facing role, more in line with sales or account management. 

When I came into the York/Think IT office, I met with a number of great people including Trevor Matthies and Andrew Knutson.  I told them what I had done in the past, but then I said ‘I want to do what you guys do…account management’.  From there, the conversations/interviews continued with senior management and resulted in us collectively defining my position of Principal Consultant. While going through this process, I was attracted to the energy and youthfulness at York, as well as the ‘non-corporate’, yet professional feel at the office!  I also liked the lack of bureaucracy and politics in making quick decisions, especially after coming from a very corporate environment.

What has been your biggest accomplishment since working here?

I would say expanding the York presence at our client through strengthening existing and establishing new relationships with key leaders across the organization.

Why do you like coming to work every day?

Every day is different!  Between the time I spend on site at the client and York, I thoroughly enjoy engaging with different people throughout the day!  The conversations with people regarding such a variety of topics changes every day!  The opportunity to truly help people
grow in their careers through York and Think IT is very empowering and rewarding.

Who has influenced you the most, either professionally or personally?

Professionally, I would say it has been most of the leaders I have worked with and for over the years!  Specifically, I would say my first manager at American Express, Fred Wadlow, was one of my biggest mentors, leading by example and challenging me to become a better leader.  Personally, I am inspired and influenced by my wife Bridget and 3 kids; Nathan, Melissa and
Matthew!  They have always been supportive, especially during times of transitions into new career choices over the years!

How do you spend your time outside of the office?

With my family!  Between travel basketball, club soccer and other activities, nights and weekends are kept very busy!  When I do have time, I enjoy golfing in the summer and playing hockey in the winter.  I also spend time helping at church, volunteering with numerous
charities, sitting on the BOD with 4p- Support Group, along with a number of things. I also love to travel, especially to warmer places in the winter now that I don’t live in Arizona anymore!

Topics: Blogs, Company News, Employer Insights, Fun, York Solutions, York Consultant Profiles, York Solutions Employees

Read York Solutions Jobs of the Week!

Posted by Danielle Toste on Thu, Feb 13, 2014 @ 10:02 AM

Position: Project Manager-Data Warehouse

Client is looking for Project Manager in the retail industry in Minneapolis, MN. This person must have retail background, data warehouse knowledge, 8+ years of experience, and preferably be PMP certified.

This position was posted on 2/11/2014. Click Here for more details!

job searchPosition: ISA/TMG Firewall Consultant

A top client in Brooklyn Park, MN is looking for an ISA/TMG for a 6 month project. This person must know about security enhancements, experience in deploying F5 with Microsoft Forefront, and forefront TMG plug-in installer.

This position was posted on 2/11/2014. Click Here for more details!

Position: SAP Basis

A client in St. Paul, MN is looking for a candidate who has a strong experience in Java systems and a significant Portal/PI background. The candidate must be either a US Citizen or GC holder due to export control laws.

This position was posted on 2/12/2014. Click Here for more details!

Position: Business Intelligence

A project manager with a background in business intelligence is needed for a 6+ month project for a client in Brooklyn Park, MN. This person will be a business PM responsible for managing across many business stakeholders and work with the stakeholders to track BI solutions that need to be remediated.

This position was posted on 2/12/2014. Click Here for more details!


Want to know more? View all of our open IT contract positions by visiting our Job Seekers page!

Topics: Blogs, ITJobs, Job Search, IT Job Search, IT Hiring, York Solutions jobsoftheweek, York Recruiters