While as a tech professional your skill set is in-demand, it’s important to realize that employers are still looking for the best-of-the-best talent that can check the box on a variety of niche skills. It’s no longer enough to apply as an “IT specialist” with a blanket resume and cold application. What makes you ideal for specific positions and how can you prove it? You can have all the experience in the world, but if you don’t show it off, who will know? Follow the steps below and brag a little:
1) Optimize your resume:
First things first. Before you hop online and begin to design a digital portfolio (we’ll get to that), you need to polish your good old-fashioned, Word-doc resume. Whether you’re a recent grad or have years of experience in the tech industry, it’s good practice to update and customize your resume based on each position you’re applying for. For tech professionals, clearly listing specific skills you’ve honed, coding languages you know, and programs you have experience in are just as important as chronologically listing your past positions. In order to limit your resume to one page, this will likely require cutting out positions that just aren’t relevant.
If you’re new to the field, upper-level assignments from classes or independent projects definitely have a place on your resume. For example, if you’re applying for an entry-level position that requires knowledge of SQL, you better include that database project you aced senior year on your resume. Once you’ve updated your resume with the most up-to-date and relevant skills and experience, you can move on to the fun part.
2) Build an Online Portfolio:
As a tech pro, you’ll be hard pressed to find a position that doesn’t ask for a link to your online portfolio. Building a digital tech portfolio gives you a chance to define your own brand and showcase all of the projects you’ve poured your blood, sweat, and tears into (emphasis on the tears). Like many job-search tasks, the hardest part of building an online portfolio is finding the best way to stand out. Don’t worry, once you’re on a roll, your creativity should run rampant. Should you describe yourself as a coding-ninja? Should you have a headshot front and center, or remain an elusive genius behind a screen? You’ll answer these questions in time, but for now, pick what platform you want to get started on.
The platform you choose (and how you design it) depends largely on what positions you’re applying for and what projects you’re wanting to showcase. Start with our list below:
- Wix: Makes online portfolios as easy as Sunday morning. By providing quick and easy templates, drag-and-drop customization, or the power to “create without limits” using Wix Code. Basic features are free, with àla carte pricing for premium templates and stock images, as well as a monthly domain plan. An all-around solid, and simplified, choice.
- Behance: As Adobe’s resident portfolio program, Behance may already be at your disposal. Ideal for front-end developers, UX gurus, graphic designers, and other pros wanting to showcase their creative genius, Behance is a simple way to garner “oohs and ahhs” from prospective employers.
- GitHub: If you’re a software developer, you already know about Github – but are you using it? And if you’re using it, is it up-to-date? Respected by leaders across the tech landscape, GitHub has become a standard tool for documenting your code, providing contributions to open source projects, and making your work readily available for review. Easily link to your code from your personal website or host your website directly through Github to impress hiring managers (and your friends).
3) Network, Network, Network:
You can spend hours updating your resume and weeks creating an online portfolio, but you might still wait for months to be contacted about an open position – unless, that is, you become an expert networker. If you’ve flinched at the thought of networking, it’s important to note that it’s no longer synonymous with informational interviews or loud and crowded cocktail parties where you smile and nod even though you have no idea what the other person is saying. Today, networking primarily happens online through professional networks, such as LinkedIn. Just as your tech portfolio represents your personal brand, so too should your professional profiles.
Update your information on your professional profiles (using your resume) and prominently link to your online portfolio. Once you do that, reach out to recruiters at companies you’d like to work for using a well-crafted elevator pitch. If you already completed an online application, let them know! In a sea of applications or a pond of online portfolios as snazzy as yours – networking is the foolproof answer for standing out.
While following the steps above will prove vital to showcasing your tech skills so you’re one step closer to landing the position of your dreams, it’s nice to have an expert in your corner. Our seasoned recruiters here at NueVista take pride in working individually with each of our candidates to help them showcase their skills, prepare for interviews, and connect with rewarding careers.
Ready to find your ideal tech position? We’re ready to learn all about you! Browse our open positions or send us a message introducing yourself (Go on, brag a little).