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5 tips to help you land that dream tech job

Applying for positions in the tech industry can often be a little different than other types of jobs, but these tips can help give you an edge over the competition.
Written by StackCommerce, Partner on
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StackCommerce

The following content is brought to you by ZDNet partners. If you buy a product featured here, we may earn an affiliate commission or other compensation.

Whether you're just starting in the tech industry or trying to advance in an established career, the goal will always be to get paid as well as possible for doing work you enjoy. But if you're going to land that dream position you found while scouring tech job sites, you need to bring your A-game to the application process. Fortunately, a handful of tips can give you an edge over the job-seeking competition.

1. Research tech companies.

Employers are always looking for workers who will fit well within their company. But it's just as crucial to determine which companies will suit you best. First, compare products and services to see which interests you most. Next, find out as much as possible about the company culture and check to see if there is any recent news about the organization.

For the companies you consider possibilities, dive deeper to learn as much as possible about them, including their leadership and competitors. All that information, plus the recent press coverage, will serve you well during the interview process.

2. Have your skills certified.

Even if you've completed formal education in your field, certifications for specific skills listed in job descriptions can be helpful. And many tech companies are more interested in whether you can do the work they need rather than where you went to school. So passing certification exams offered by vendor-neutral organizations such as CompTIA can make your resume stand out. And if you want to work for a company like Cisco, which has certification exams of its own, passing them will be a huge plus.

While these exams can be difficult, there are all types of affordable online courses that can help you pass them. Since they're self-paced, you can take them even while working full-time at your current job. Other courses are available, as well, that come with completion certificates which may work just as well.

3. Optimize your resume.

It's hard to overstate the importance of a good resume. It's frequently the very first impression potential employers will have of you. You should optimize your resume for both screenings by applicant tracking systems and for being read by actual humans. Do not use gimmicks, employ keywords from job descriptions, and keep it to one page with no walls of text.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/oDyt9K6qUNk

If you get a Resoume subscription, it comes with templates and uses artificial intelligence to create effective resumes and cover letters. It also provides a CV score and Resume Feedback Page. You can even have a custom subdomain to create a personal website with more information about you and your experience and a downloadable PDF of your resume.

4. Networking is more important and easier than you thought.

Networking has gotten a bad rap over the years because many people are uncomfortable with the thought of schmoozing with strangers. But not only are there numerous great networking tips for you to choose from, but it could also be as simple as keeping in touch with that colleague you learned something from in your last job or the supervisor you got along so well with.

In any case, there are some fundamental reasons why you should try to get to know people in your field. For one thing, it may be someone you know who lets you know about a job coming available that you'd love. Also, references from other professionals add to your credibility.

5. Thoroughly prepare for your interviews.

You know they're coming, so you should do everything you can to get ready for them. There could be three or more interviews, each requiring different preparation.

Phone Interview

The first interview is often by phone or video chat. Make sure your equipment is working and that you are on time and looking professional, no matter where it occurs. Many people don't realize that it's imperative to let the interviewer know you're interested in the position, so be ready to explain why.

You need to have a concise way of showcasing your accomplishments to their best advantage. Pick out keywords in the job description and integrate them into your answers about your experience Practice answering common interview questions, such as "Tell me a little about yourself." That could be a brief description of your current position, followed by your background and future goals.

Technical Interview

There will likely be at least one interview to determine the level of your skills, so you should brush up on any you may not have used for a while. For example, if you're asked to solve a problem, remember the interviewer will want to see your process as well as your answer.

Final Interview

If you've made it to the final interview, probably onsite, your qualifications have been established. Now it's just a matter of which of the last few candidates will best fit in with the company. This will be an excellent time to ask a few questions, such as what the reporting structure or typical workday is like in that position.

If time is short...

Did you unexpectedly get a chance to apply for a position and need quick last-minute advice? Here is the bare minimum you need to keep in mind.

All other things being equal, it can often be your resume that first gets your foot in the door, so you must show your skills and experience to their best advantage. Fortunately, you don't have to hire an expensive service to create one for you every time you want to move up in your career since a lifetime subscription to the Complete Resoume AI Assistant Resumé Writer is only $39.99.

Make sure you come across as professional, competent and friendly for all of your interviews. Interviewers won't remember everything you say, but they'll always remember what it was like to talk to you.

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