How to Get a Job in Tech in 2021

Image credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com

Almost everyone wants a tech job these days. The tech space is an innovative and attractive field because of the competitive salaries and a lot of job openings it offers.

As attractive as getting a job in tech is, it’s not as easy as many think it is. You won’t just apply, get an interview invitation and get hired instantly. You need to go beyond possessing a highly competitive tech skill, and learn how to position yourself strategically to attract the attention of tech companies.

Doing this isn’t a simple process. But it’s worth dedicating enough effort to, so you can land your dream tech job.

The amazing thing is that knowing how to get a job in tech is learnable just like you learned how to write code. Some coding boot camps like Flatiron School don’t just teach you how to code; they also prepare you with your tech job search, for employment, and beyond.

I will share with you what you need to do before you start your job hunt to make yourself a favorable candidate for tech companies.

Learn relevant soft skills in addition to your coding skills.

Image Credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com

Your tech skills won’t get you employed without learning additional soft skills that would make you communicate and collaborate effectively with other members of a tech team.

Here are some soft skills you need to master to increase your chances of getting a job in tech;

Communication skills.

Even if you won’t end up interacting with a lot of clients in your tech role, you still need to have a great ability to communicate in every way.

For instance, you may find yourself in a team of developers, where everyone must understand the vision for the project, who’s responsible for what, standard practices for accomplishing tasks, etc., and be able to effectively collaborate.

If you are unable to communicate properly, it can lead to the project falling through the cracks and this could attract sanctions from management.

What you should do to improve your communication skills

  1. Share your tech journey with the public through social media or a blogging site like hashnode. Doing this shows potential employers that you can communicate technical ideas clearly.
  2. Start a podcast or a Vlog: If you are a better speaker than a writer, you can consider starting a podcast or a Vlog where you share on your tech journey. You can also take a step further by interviewing other people who want to give helpful insights based on their experiences in the tech space.
  3. Join Tech communities: Join and contribute to local communities and events like Ladiesdotech. This is a great way to prove that you can communicate, learn fast, and make connections within the tech space.

Develop Teamwork Skills

You need to know how to work together with other software engineers to build a project successfully, to increase your chances of being hired by tech companies.

To develop this skill, you need to reach out and collaborate with other developers to create a joint project. Also, you need to interact with other people’s code on open source softwares and participate in hackathons. When you engage in these you’ll gain experience working with people in different skill levels and backgrounds.

Gain relevant work experience through internships

You can also have a competitive advantage over other job applicants in a tech role if you’ve previously worked as an intern for a company in a related role. You don’t need to have a relevant career or full-time job on your resume; a short-term or part-time internship looks good too. Even if it may not be glamorous, it could serve as a great stepping stone for you.

This is well described by Jennifer, a leading software engineer here.

Work on personal projects, freelance, or volunteer on projects.

In addition to working on joint projects with other developers or interning at organizations, another way you can build a strong portfolio is to volunteer on projects for friends, get paid gigs on freelance sites like Fiverr and Upwork, or you can build a personal project that solves a problem around you. Doing these has proven to be helpful at interviews and has been a major factor in landing a role at tech companies.

Freeman Ogbiyoyo summarises it here;

Build a strong network of friends in the Tech space

It is no longer news that having a good network can help job seekers get a job easier. According to thebalancecareers, over 80% of job seekers say that they got their jobs from help from their network. Networking can help provide referrals or insider information about companies you might be interested in working for.

Become intentional about knowing more people by attending tech meetups, career fairs, and simply talking to people about your passions.

If you are a techie, in need of a vibrant female tech community to join to increase your growth in the tech space, I’d advise you join the Ladiesdotech community here: Join.ladiesdotech.org

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Ladies Do Tech

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Fostering a community of excellent, passionate and groundbreaking ladies in African tech, who can work together, not only to challenge the status quo.

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