Looking for good Yahoo search engineers

I was talking to an excellent new Googler that joined from Yahoo this week, and that reminded me that I meant to do this post a little while ago. So I’ll keep this post short and sweet: if you’re an excellent Yahoo engineer with solid experience in search, Google is hiring. If you want to apply for a Software Engineer position search in Mountain View, use this job page and the application will make it to the right recruiters. Thanks!

Update 9/17/2009: We made a special “Search Software Engineer” position that you can use to apply.

68 Responses to Looking for good Yahoo search engineers (Leave a comment)

  1. Oh Matt, your so ballsy :-p

  2. Things must be going pretty bad for Google if they’re trying to poach from Yahoo.

  3. lol I agree with you Marie, Matt is ballsy haha! I wonder is Yahoo hiring Google’s staff too. lol!

  4. From Yahoo to Google, is better than a good acquired by Microsoft!

  5. Then again, search engineers at Yahoo! have reason to worry about job security and Google always needs smart people with skillz so why not get while the getting’s good?

  6. God!! Thats way too bold!!

  7. hahahaah… so google is next step for yahoo engineer.

  8. MS is buying Yahoo and will be head on compete with Google. People will be going round these three giant. So what is the trade secrete?

  9. If yahoo try to spy Google, is the perfect way! Infiltrated engineers πŸ˜€

  10. Strange that those Yahoo employees don’t have one of those contract agreements saying “you won’t work for any of our competitors for 2 years after you leave here” type of deal.

    And what about Ask Jeeves? And Hotbot? What about WEBCRAWLER!?!?

  11. I agree with @Andrew Evans … It would be wise for Yahoo to enter such a clause in their contract. Otherwise all the Yahoo inside info – more or less known by Google – is easily acknowledged and transfered to Google.

  12. Is it starting the third world war?

  13. Andrew, good engineers not agree to sign that type of deals πŸ˜‰

  14. uhmmm, Create a dedicated page for ex Yahoo! employees to apply πŸ˜‰

    juz kidding πŸ˜‰

  15. @Andrew Evans – funny you mention Ask Jeeves – I found them using Google-sourced results recently – see http://tr.im/uA7x

    Oh how I’d love to see the full text of that deal with Google πŸ™‚

    Makes me wonder why no-one’s bought Ask Jeeves yet – especially Microsoft. Or even better, maybe Baidu could buy them as an entry into some western markets.

  16. @Andrew Evans – Re: Employment Contracts. California law states that non-compete’s are unenforceable. http://boingboing.net/2008/08/08/california-supreme-c-1.html

  17. Head of the SPAM department turned HR specialist I see.

  18. Oh my god, what should she do when the CEO of Yahoo see the post?
    Waiting for next step of Yahoo!

  19. Hi matt,
    This is socking as Google is openly offering job especially for yahoo engineer.

  20. Oh, now Google is offering to pay more, in order to steal Yahoo workers 😯 πŸ˜†

  21. Nice to see Google taking advantage of California not allowing the enforcement of non-compete clauses. πŸ™‚

    Seriously, find good homes for those Yahoo Search people. Regardless of how the company has been managed, Yahoo has attracted some incredible search folks, and it would be a shame to see their talents go to waste.

  22. @Andrew & @Daniel.

    Going from my discusions with senior HR/Legal types Non competes are very dificult to enforce even where legal and you would have to pay thease yahoo types for the non compete time.

    And it doesnt matter if you signed a non compete it’s unlikly that it would be considered a valid contract espesialy at low levels like this. And you/google could argue that Yahoo is no longer in the search business so they wouldnt be competeting πŸ™‚

  23. @ng You said “Things must be going pretty bad for Google if they’re trying to poach from Yahoo.”

    I respectfully disagree. I think Yahoo!’s management suppressed their search engineering talent pool quite a bit…so Google is definitely making the right move in trying to snag Yahoo!’s top talent and put it to real use. πŸ™‚

  24. Jignesh, I don’t bear Yahoo any bad feelings; I just wanted Yahoo search engineers to know that we are looking for great people. Yahoo tried to recruit me back in 2005: http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/recruiting-email/ and when Jeremy Zawodny worked at Yahoo, he put out calls for job applicants all the time, including http://jeremy.zawodny.com/blog/archives/003898.html where he said “Yahoo is a great place to work. No lame PR-sounding fluff stories here” with that second sentence pointing to the Google blog. πŸ™‚ So it’s not as if Yahoo hasn’t put out calls for people.

    As Daniel Tunkelang put it, Yahoo has some incredible search folks, and I think they’d be happy at Google. We still have a lot of fun, interesting projects to tackle in search quality. We’ve got a great infrastructure where you can run a map-reduce over a large portion of the web in hours, try out new ideas in 20% time, and make an impact on tons of people. The work environment is very nice and engineers are treated really well here. I love that in search quality, we decide what we think is best for the user and don’t worry about how it does or doesn’t affect revenue, for example.

  25. There’s nothing like out and out blatentness (is that a word!?)

    Although I suppose software engineers who specialise in writing search algorithms are only located in a few places. They must only have a few developers left though Matt ;oP

  26. “Oh my god, what should she do when the CEO of Yahoo see the post?”
    Send her resume to Google? πŸ™‚

  27. One thing that seems to be missing here in the UK is respect for Engineers. Yeah, I know it’s the US and Google, but I think regardless of whether it’s from Yahoo or anywhere else, if you are offering a good environment where Engineers can develop ideas and bounce them around with like minded individuals then that’s great and probably a good long term strategy.
    Experienced Search Engineers (and recruiters for same) must be thin on the ground so at least someone is hiring!

  28. Yahoo has search engineers?

    Haha just having fun. I imagine you guys had some interesting discussions about this internally before deciding to move forward on it. Good luck with the process!

  29. Why not recruit from Yahoo? As far as I’m concerned it’s a pretty astute (if not cheeky) move. If you’re looking for experienced people what better place to look than your closest competitor? And to be perfectly honest, it probably should be considered a step up from Yahoo considering Google has ~72% of the market share whilst Yahoo has ~17%.

  30. I’m confused. I heard somewhere recently that Yahoo was never a search company. How could they have engineers? Heh, couldn’t resist.

  31. WOW. Out open and in tho public…… Google hiring tactics exposed!

    Seriously folks.. this happens in industry all the time. Matt is smart for finding talent outside of the company and what better than to go to the #2 player in the market and ask for the top talent to make a switch to a company that has free meals, a fun exciting atmosphere, a culture focused on the end user and not $$, and last but not least……… the only remaining real estate bubble in the US: Mountain View California!

    Good luck.

    hmmmm……. Google owns video search. Google owns web search. Google owns data storage. Google owns tech. Next: Google Stores (like Apple stores or Microsoft stores). Google will own mobile search. And last but finally least: Google will own “Local Search”.

  32. BTW, if the Dallas Cowboys did the same in recruiting I am sure folks in Dallas Tx would not complain!

  33. It is better to get them to Google and give them salary then let them wonder around start-up world or god forbid Craigslists, Facebook or Twitter.

  34. Yahoo! is crap! please, noooooooo!!!

    Noooooo Matt!!! Google!!! You can’t do that please!!!! Yahoo! SUCKS! in any ways. Their crawler, their guidelines, their customer service, their email service, the SEARCHER, Yahoo! sucks!! please.. do not bring shit to Google. Keep away from the mediocre people from Yahoo!, especially from that guy named Justin. If everybody in Yahoo! is like him, all of them are a donkey’s nest. Please, keep Google clean from Yahoo and their stupid searcher good for nothing. Thanks!

  35. I am glad that matt put up a disclaimer pointing out that the views expressed here are his personal and not the company’s. Google Hr would have got a bad name trying to steal yahoo’s engineer’s πŸ™‚
    Although, Matt .. what link should non-yahoo engineer’s click to land a job in Google ? πŸ™‚
    Yahoo is a great search engine and have excellent engineers. Of course Google would benefit from them!!

  36. To the guy above my post. You can’t judge book from it’s cover. I might be working in Yahoo right now but it does not mean i suck too. This shows that you suck more than Yahoo’s services.

  37. Matt, PLEASE READ THIS Comment:


    I am not asking a question related to Google or anything like that: this is related to your own WordPress blog security.

    Matt, I visit your blog everyday and I find lot of useful information here. I have found lots of WordPress related tips here. One of them was the security tip to prevent the wp-admin folder via .htaccess. I decided to implement that change just recently.

    When making a change to my WordPress blog, I first come to your blog to see if you have done it or not.

    There is a security tip [not the prevention of wp-admin folder] which you have implemented but just lately I found in my blog, that there was still a place in the blog where that security tip did not worked. So I made that change in my blog, but when I checked here, I was surprised to see that you have not prevented that page.

    This security problem is a minor one [I think] but I still do not want to write about it here: I do not want you blaming me to disclose your blog security leak [:mrgreen: a minor leak that is] to hackers πŸ˜†

    I do not have your real Email address so I will send an email to your Fake mail address you made few weeks back.

    Please read that email, it will come from angilina.

    This comment or that email is not spam. I am not selling anything πŸ˜‰

    This is a minor problem with your blog which I want to tell you and may be you will reply that this is not a problem at all. But do read just in case

    Thank You

  38. angilina, I think I still have .htaccess protection on my wp-admin folder; I just updated the .htaccess file this morning, in fact.

  39. Thank You for reading my comment. Matt, the thing I want to tell you is not related to .htaccess protection. Please read the email I just sent to siliconvalleyuser at gmail dot com.

    The email is of few lines and will take few of your seconds.

    Thank You

  40. *shakes his head in shame* Google typically has the pick of the liter, do they really need to go after Yahoo Engineers? Not to mention the job market is down in the dumps and Google is hiring people who already have jobs?

    Also quite disappointed by a lot of these comments. Some people need to remember where Google got its head start. Yeah that is right, Yahoo used to use Google search. So don’t go out bashing Yahoo as a bad search engine, they both have their good and bad points :).

    Still enjoy your blog Matt πŸ™‚

  41. And Matt, Please update on this matter and tell if the thing I mentioned in the email, is of any importance or not. Should we worry about it ?

  42. Yahoo own the second big search engine in the world. But sometimes the pay of their engineers are not so popular.

    Yahoo is a good guy, but is old.

  43. Bartz calls you to go home for lunch

  44. Hey Matt.., That’s very risky…
    I want to know when you hired one from Yahoo…
    That’s very interesting..

  45. you’re an excellent Yahoo engineer with solid experience in search, Google is hiring.What’s the reason behing Google restricting itself to YaWho Engineers? Hope no ‘Brain picking’, cause that will send Google back 10 Years.

  46. This is an excellent way to get the other side working for you. Great post! Go from Yahoo to Google. Ah Hah! πŸ™‚

  47. Strange that those Yahoo employees don’t have one of those contract agreements saying β€œyou won’t work for any of our competitors for 2 years after you leave here” type of deal.

    Not as strange as you think. it can be an unenforceable clause in some jurisdictions (e.g. my home province of Ontario) because it conflicts with one’s right to earn a living where and when one sees fit, and also because the “restrictive covenant” is often ambiguous in terms of such things as geographical area.


    The only way in which I’ve seen companies get around this and not get called on it (to the best of my knowledge, anyway) is to create a 90-day no-compete clause whereby the (ex-)worker effectively gets paid to sit at home and do nothing. A two-year no-compete clause of that nature would be pretty expensive, though. I’m not sure whether this holds weight because the worker is paid, though.

    This is definitely a grey area, and when you throw in the issue of geographic regions (theoretically, a Yahoo! employee in San Fran could work for Google in New York if the “restrictive covenant” didn’t clearly specify as such), it gets even messier. And we know most lawyers aren’t going to make any serious effort to straighten that mess out if they don’t have to.

  48. Matt – All the best but why not search from other companies? Why Yahoo of all? LOL

  49. Matt,
    I am responding to your tweets and your blog. I am a recruiter for Yahoo! In spirit of fair competition, I wanted to let you know that Yahoo is also looking for Engineers as well (Of course we love to talk to Engineers from Google!) Yahoo has some positive changes in the recent months and is having a hiring bonanza. I don’t want get into a Google vs. Yahoo discussion on your blog, but those of you that would like more info, you can contact me via twitter Shawnrecruits4u and I can share information with you. Matt thanks for letting me put this on your blog.


  50. Shawn Cartwright, well-played. πŸ™‚

  51. Hello Matt, I guess you have not and well not read the email I sent to you πŸ™‚

    Anyways, I wanted to tell you that if you open this page:


    Which will redirect to some other page: now open the source code. You can see this:


    Aren’t we suppose to hide the WordPress version for security reasons? Or it does not matter?

  52. The code I pasted turned into a link:

    ** ******/?v=2.8.4 **

  53. Hello Matt, I guess you have not and well not read the email I sent to you πŸ™‚

    Anyways, I wanted to tell you that if you open this page:

    mattcutts . com /blog/rss/

    Which will redirect to some other page: now open the source code. You can see this:

    generator ***********/?v=2.8.4 generator

    Aren’t we suppose to hide the WordPress version for security reasons? Or it does not matter?

  54. Why don’t you see the bright side of it offering jobs for soon-to-be jobless bcuz of MS aquisition?

  55. Are you going to take it over? well, i don’t know if it would be a better internet, a better world then…

  56. IN RESPONSE TO “hmmmm……. Google owns video search. Google owns web search. Google owns data storage. Google owns tech. Next: Google Stores (like Apple stores or Microsoft stores). Google will own mobile search. And last but finally least: Google will own β€œLocal Search”.

    Why bother wasting resources on brick and mortar? G already “owns” all the important search markets and data platforms the electronic manufacturers & devices are using. You don’t need the device when the device needs you… which leads to the new “owning your data” theory … and being able to upload & download to and from any device, anywhere and anytime etc…

  57. Matt,
    So Kind of you to post this blog for your bloggers to read! πŸ™‚ Sarcasm*

    Yahoo’s search direction has been unclear for some time. While it has invested billions in that part of its business with acquisitions of Inktomi and Overture and its own development of search assets, it’s never been clear whether they wnat to go head-to-head with Google however that is out of question with latest Bing+Yahoo news.

    Interesting to read that yahoo is stacking up Search Engineers for getting their search algorithm more in alignment with Bing or does this mean More serious competition for Google ? πŸ™‚

  58. I’m working in altavista :p

  59. Its very interesting.I think it will help google to unleash some secrets of yahoo!!!

  60. Good to see that Googlers are helping the flagship with recruiting. If anyone at Yahoo is looking for work there are a number of DC startups who are looking for ex Yahoo folks too.


  61. LOL! Too funny… Bold but smart, I am sure Google can pay more, is a more fun environment and could always use more talent.

  62. I remember that Facebook was stealing Googlers πŸ˜‰
    Details on this TechCrunch article

    I’m also following Yahoo applications (Search Boss, Search Monkey…)
    We have to admit Yahoo! team qualified creativity. they made Innovative tools like Pipes and they are making nice semantic improvments like tagging, microformats…

    So it’s nice to hear from Shawn Cartwright that it doesn’t cause any problem πŸ™‚

  63. From what I can gather Googles new algo for their Caffeine update, seems to be taking a step backwards into yahoo territory with more emphasis on the domain name, not sure if this correlates to hiring yahoo engineers, but hoping they continue to evolve the update and provide some additional clarity …

  64. google is hiring because all their “good” search engineers will leave the company sooner or later to make their own Millions, if i am a google search engineer. and i know exactly how to rank a website top 3, i know every possible ranking factor and strategy, every white hat and black hat trick, then there is no way you can keep me in an office, time to make some millions (or billions) !.

  65. Google always looking everywhere for the best whether it be somebody from Yahoo, or any other company. Google looks for the highest standard of quality. That’s why Matt says “excellent Yahoo engineer with solid experience in search”. I’m assuming M.att is postint this since Yahoo will be laying off search engineers now that Yahoo has handed the reigns of search to an outside company.

  66. I have to laugh at all of the “Why would you want to hire Yahoo engineers” comments. Of course you want to hire Yahoo engineers there are tons of great engineers at Yahoo and like it or not there are tons of great engineers at Microsoft. When I owned a software company we hired a number of our engineers from the competition.


  67. matt do you happne to hire skilled seo’s πŸ™‚ ?

  68. Sounds like the EDA world, people shuffle between Synopsis, Cadence and Mentor every 3-5 years, gaining promotions each time (or not).

    Pretty specific job skills.