Employer Highlight: Pillar

Pillar’s Ann Arbor office has played an important role in the growth of Michigan’s tech industry.

Building a talented and diverse tech workforce  is one of our biggest goals at Grand Circus and something that influences all aspects of our company, especially our hiring partners. That’s why we love our friends over at Pillar!

A national leader in technology consulting, Pillar has been developing innovative solutions and helping create a more diversified tech industry for over 20 years. Better yet, they’re always looking for talented developers to join their team! They’ve been a strong supporter of our students, often making time to visit the classroom, hosting events in our space and hiring many of our graduates. 

We recently caught up with two Pillar team members, Joe Schoch and Colleen Geyer, to talk about their company and what advice they would give to someone thinking about starting a career in tech.

Q&A With Pillar Technology

How would you describe your organization and what does your team try to


Pillar is a software consulting firm that helps clients solve tough technical problems. We do so by assisting them with their strategy setting and creating great software for them.

In your opinion, how does Grand Circus prepare students for careers in tech?

The preparation bootcamps offer to students is not only in the beginnings of technical coding knowledge, but also in the important areas of collaboration in a tech environment, critical problem-solving skills and connections to area tech companies that are hiring.

What are you looking for when hiring programmers?

In addition to a solid technical foundation in any programming language, we look for superior soft skills. We look for people who have a passion for technology and people. We want people to have a good amount of curiosity. Great consultants ask great questions.

What advice would you give someone considering a career in tech?

Learn as much as you can. Be a sponge of information. Network yourself into the local tech community. Detroit’s tech community is full of support. You just need to ask for help.

Group work, people working on mac computer
Solid technical knowledge, great soft skills, and passion for technology are all must-haves for members of the Pillar team.

More specifically, for someone without a background in tech or a computer science degree – what advice would you give them and what should they know going into tech?

In addition to all the things mentioned above, it will be especially important for this person to be open to all opportunities and seek mentors, job shadow opportunities and internships to help get their career started.

What resources would you recommend to new developers?

Network with local companies through Meetup groups. Explore your passions outside of your classwork. Try new things and don’t be afraid of failure. Failures are great opportunities for learning.

How do you support continued learning for your employees?

We support our employees learning by encouraging the to participate in conferences. We also encourage them to take advantage of our learning budget. We support learning through our Career Retros. We want to know where people want to grow their careers. If it’s outside of development, we want to know!

Thank you to Joe and Colleen for sharing their insight and to Pillar Technology for their continued support as a Grand Circus Hiring Partner!  We’re excited to see this partnership strengthen, and hope these insights will help future bootcampers prepare for the job hunt!