- How to find job openings
- The importance of investing in training
- What skills to highlight on your resume and cover letter
- How to prepare for your interview
For those interested in finding a new career, computer science and IT jobs may offer the perfect fit. Working in information technology (IT) can provide a wide range of opportunities for professionals with diverse background skills and interests.
As the world becomes more dependent on technology, the jobs available in this industry continue to increase. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), computer-related jobs will grow an average of 15% over the next 10 years, which is significantly faster than other career areas.
To get a job within this sector, however, candidates must demonstrate skills that will make them a good fit. Whether you’re a newcomer to the IT world and want to find an entry-level position or you have held several previous positions in the industry, knowing how to put your best foot forward will help you get the right job.
Beginning your IT career requires careful planning and preparation. Taking steps that demonstrate your dedication and the skills you can bring to the field will set you up for the best possible success. Here are seven steps to help you get a job in IT.
If you’re interested in the field of IT but haven’t worked in the industry, researching job openings provides you with a great place to start. Remember that jobs within the IT field can vary widely, from help desk service support to analysts or programmers. You want to identify the areas where you’re most likely to excel.
Your job search will help you see new job openings and descriptions so you can better understand what businesses hope to see in the candidates they hire. This can help you prepare your own resume and bolster your credentials, as well.
You can then take advantage of the wide range of options available for finding job openings. Job boards like Joblist can help you find and save searches relevant to the job you want. These listings can help you gain excellent insight into the job market and positions available.
Networking events can also provide you with valuable contacts and opportunities to make connections, which may eventually lead to employment. If you’re transitioning from another industry, look for positions that might serve as a crossover from your previous job into IT.
The IT field is an ever-changing, exciting area to work in. As computers connect people around the globe, they enable not only conveniences like remote work and online shopping but also help businesses maintain inventory, reach customers, and track internal business needs.
As you begin to determine the areas of IT where you’d like to work, you’ll also want to take the time to bolster your resume with new learning opportunities and relevant certificates. Employers like to see candidates who show initiative to maintain their education and training so they are ready for the latest in computer science.
As the time approaches to apply for a job in the IT industry, draft a well-rounded resume that aligns well with the job description. Your skill set and technical skills should line up with what the hiring manager wants to see for this position.
Note the language used and the skills called for in the job listing to adjust your application. Make it clear why your resume should stand out from the other IT professionals submitting their names for consideration. Create a resume that follows these best practices:
Another excellent piece of career advice lies in creating a cover letter. Your cover letter is your chance to sell yourself for this IT job. While your resume lists your skills, past experiences, and certifications that have prepared you for the job, your cover letter allows you to speak directly to the person making the hiring decision. Companies looking for candidates to fill tech jobs likely see a variety of candidates who have the technical qualifications of the position. This is your chance to explore what makes you uniquely a good fit for this career path and go beyond the list of credentials you listed on your resume.
A job search in the modern world also calls for an online presence that helps to bolster your application. It’s not uncommon for a potential employer to check the social media accounts of candidates, particularly on LinkedIn. Therefore, updating your profile to reflect your desired IT position can benefit you.
Social media platforms can also offer additional opportunities for networking, which can help you get your resume moved to the top of the pile when you submit it. Looking for connections at the companies where you want to apply, speaking with people experienced in IT, and otherwise reaching out to those who can offer you some insight and information on securing your dream job can present you with tremendous opportunity.
Remember that thriving in an IT position requires knowing more than just technical skills. You must also have soft skills to work well with the rest of the team. Communication skills, leadership abilities, and experience in project management can help you stand out from the other candidates applying for the job.
One survey found that as many as 92% of hiring managers mentioned that soft skills were more important than technical skills when making a new hire. Excellent soft skills can help candidates work well with existing team members, which improves efficiency, morale, and the quality of the work output.
Consider situations in the past where you have had to use soft skills and how you successfully navigated challenging experiences. Incorporating these concrete examples into your cover letter (and, hopefully, your interview) can help you cast yourself as a good candidate for the job.
Once you’ve submitted a resume and cover letter that demonstrate how you stand out from other job seekers, the next step involves an interview. This interview provides you with the chance to get to know the leaders at the business or startup where you’d like to work. During the interview, you’ll evaluate each other to see if you’ll be a good fit for the company and position.
As with all job opportunities in the tech industry, you’ll have to consider any technical skills you might be expected to display at the interview. You should also have prepared experiences and stories that reflect soft skills, such as problem-solving, communication, leadership, and teamwork examples to further highlight yourself as a well-rounded candidate. As you prepare for the interview, keep these best practices in mind:
As you begin your search for the perfect IT job, you can use Joblist to make the quest easier. With features that make the job search simple — such as the ability to save jobs so you can apply later, filters to match you with the best possible positions based on your unique skills and goals, and a host of resources to help searchers find the right jobs — you’re sure to find a job you’re looking for.