Bloom Energy is an outgrowth of a NASA Mars research project to use fuel cells to sustain life on Mars. The research transferred to a commercial endeavor in 2001 as ION America. The company changed its name to Bloom Energy in 2006 and has grown to 1500 employees. Blooom’s solid oxide fuel cell technology uses common, low cost materials to generate highly-efficient power from almost any hydrocarbon fuel, such as ethanol, biodiesel, methane or natural gas.
Bloom Energy recruiter Whitnie Low embodies the mission of Bloom to make “clean, reliable energy for everyone on earth.” In college, Low studied environmental geology, the study of our affect on the world’s landscape and development of sound advice about how humanity can live responsibly and sustainably on Earth. Right out of college, Low participated in Teach for America, an non-profit that serves kids in poverty stricken regions, spending her tenure in Miami.
Recently I sat down with Low to learn her top five career tips:
Track your accomplishments with numbers
- From Day 1 record what you do. This record is invaluable for representing yourself in company reviews and at interviews. Your record illustrates the why and how you are great at your job.
- As you track what you do, pay attention to numbers. For example, Bloom energy is up to roughly 1500 people. Low has hired one out of every five employees. That is 300 people in three years, an impressive figure.
Leverage LinkedIn more than you do today
- Low has found at least 50% of her new hires through LinkedIn. Take advantage of the extra features such as recommendations, introductions and who viewed your profile to maximize your exposure on the site.
Find the hiring manager through LinkedIn
- When you are interested in a position, research the hiring manager and get your resume to her. Many of us pay more attention to an email from LinkedIn than one that’s in our email box from people we don’t know.
Know your Resume
- Know your history. Low asks candidates about demonstrated ability backed up with numbers. In addition, she uses behavioral style questions, so that you can show why you are more qualified than anyone else for the job, eg “Tell me about a time when…”
- NETWORK, NETWORK, NETWORK!
- This is Low’s biggest tip. Get out, go to events and give people a chance to meet you and help you in your career.
Bloom Energy JobsCurrently, there are about 30 openings on the Bloom Energy web site. Some jobs are in Sunnyvale, while others are locationed throughout the US. Positions are in just about all departments. Take a look on their web site for more information.
We’ve learned that Bloom Energy values diversity, including the participation and wisdom of women. Many of their recruits are from the aerospace industry, and they first seek candidates with technical expertise.
More About the CompanyBloom has an impressive list of customers, from eBay to Walmart, companies with huge data centers that need uninterrupted uptime. eBay manages transactions at the rate of over $2000 per second, making reliable power critical. The grid is actually a secondary power source, so that Bloom Energy power units are part of their overall strategy for reliable, clean energy.
The Bloom Energy technology has low CO2 emissions compared to other commercially available generation systems. They are particularly useful because they deliver electricity directly where needed, on-site, so no losses due to transmission and distribution. Their technology also is the most efficient in water consumption. For example, a supermarket powered by a 200kW Bloom Energy Server saves more than 1 million gallons of water per year.
If Bloom Energy interests you, make sure you connect with Low. She is seeking qualified candidates.
Susan Brooksbank thrives on making the world a better place. After a successful career in sales, marketing, quality, and production for highly technical products, she has redirected her efforts toward organizations, products and projects that enable a sustainable, peaceful planet. She currently consults with entrepreneurs in business and customer development.