Google Says It's Hiring Again

In Earnings Call, Company Indicates an Increase in Sales Jobs

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There's one bright spot in the beleaguered media and advertising employment scene: Google is hiring again.

During its reassuring third-quarter earnings call, CEO Eric Schmidt announced that the worst was over and that it was time to return to investing in both capital expenditures and people.

"We've already indicated investment in head count; investment in head count is, roughly speaking, half engineering and half non-engineering, which has been historically our model," said Mr. Schmidt on the call. The good news for media and marketing people looking for a job in sales is what he said next, though: "The engineering is for all the reasons that you could imagine: We are short key technical talent to achieve some of these broader initiatives. In the non-engineering, it's mostly in sales, and that's, frankly, you know, quota-bearing salespeople who bring in money, money and income in the quarter."

Many of the hires will fall under Dennis Woodside's purview. He's the VP-Americas operations and came to the states from Europe to replace Tim Armstrong, who departed Google for AOL earlier this year. Penry Price, who's heading up global industry relations and was Mr. Armstrong's No. 2, is also hiring, we hear. A quick look at Google's job openings indicate more than 30 gigs in "advertising sales, operations and enterprise" in New York and another nine in marketing and research.

Google fared better than most during the recession, but even it had its share of layoffs and cost-cutting office closures. Last October it warned it was hiring more cautiously, and then in November it tightened up the number of contractors it worked with. In January it laid off 100 recruiters and closed offices in Texas, Sweden and Norway, and in March it laid off 200 people in its sales and marketing departments, blaming redundancy. But the company, believes Mr. Schmidt, has turned the corner.

"We tested our management team, and I want to say that I'm very, very proud of the management team getting us through what could have been a very significant business event for Google," Mr. Schmidt said on the earnings call last week. "And we're going to continue to invest in long-term growth. ... How are we investing? Well, we are going to invest in people."

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