Ok, confession time: I totally sucked at dating. I thought I had all the qualities of an attractive mate at that time. I was an active leader on campus, I liked to party, and I did well academically. With all of these traits, I thought, surely a perfect match would eventually come knocking down my door.
As you may have guessed, I was stuck waiting for that person to come a knockin’ for a really long time. You’ll find that most job seekers approach finding a job like I approached dating. If you want to be successful, you can’t wait for the right opportunity to just come to you. You have to seek it out. Here’s how to maximize your success:
How are you representing yourself online? It’s time for a thorough inspection of your LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook accounts. Out with the bad, and in with the nerdy goodness. First, delete anything inappropriate or anything that would make you appear undesirable as a potential coworker. Then, start sharing interesting articles and resources about technology and software development. The goal here is to demonstrate your passion and interest in your craft.
Hiring managers at technology companies are human, and all humans love a great story. Start a blog, and get writing. Position yourself as the protagonist in the challenging but rewarding journey of learning to code. Share your discoveries and what you’re working on. Bonus: Doing this is a major way to reenforce what you've learned.
Start asking and answering questions on StackOverflow and Quora. There are also wonderful coding communities within sites like Reddit and on chat services like IRC and Slack. Most cities have local user groups and regional conferences that you can attend as well. The trick is to find your ideal match by going where they’re most likely to hang out! If you want to get serious about finding a job, don’t just participate: contribute to these communities.
We’re fortunate to work in an industry where results matter more than educational background. GitHub is the place for you to demonstrate the results that you can deliver. Be sure to post all of the code you write, adhere to style guidelines, and document where appropriate (at a minimum, have a solid README).
Update your blog or personal website to include links to these projects, and explicitly share that you’re actively seeking a web development role. Don’t forget to include contact information and specifics about the kind of work you’re seeking, and the type of company cultures you think you would thrive in.
Sometimes, hiring managers, or folks doing the initial screening of candidates, are not technical. Be sure to have some working demos of the applications you’ve written, and do your best to make them aesthetically pleasing. Link to those from your blog or personal website.
You don’t have to figure all of this stuff out on your own. Our online students benefit from our expertise that has helped hundreds of students launch their careers as web developers. Enroll now and let us guide you through this process and maximize your chance of success.