Tips for New IT Graduates
Decide What You Want
Set your mind and focus on the type of job that you want. For example, you might want to be a Database Administrator or a Systems Analyst. If you know what you want to do, this will streamline your search. Make sure your resume is tailored to the job that you’re seeking. Keep an open mind when reviewing opportunities because the ideal job may be somewhere that you haven’t looked. Write down your “must-haves” such as the schedule, location or pay, but don’t dwell on these too heavily or you might overlook a great opportunity. Once you’ve narrowed your focus, keep building your skills. The industry changes so rapidly that it is absolutely critical to stay up-to-date on the latest skills and technology.
Understand What Employers are Looking For
Your credentials, certifications and degrees are important, but they aren’t everything. Employers look for certain characteristics and qualifications. Your volunteer activities, internships, summer jobs, and coursework will all factor into an employer’s decision. The way you solve problems, learn on the fly, make quick decisions, and whether or not you are a team player are assets that employers seek. Skills like working with others as well as on your own and good communication are critical. Highlight your qualities as well as hard skills so potential employers can get a good idea of the person you are and how well you will fit into the role they are looking to fill.
Have a Professional Presence
Your resume is important and can often open doors on its own, but you’ll also need to develop your professional image. Getting a job is very much about selling yourself – not just putting your skills on paper. You’ll be selling yourself at networking events, interviews, job fairs and so on. Work on developing a good “pitch” that you can use each and every time you look for work. Have points you can talk about and practice these whenever possible, so it’s polished. Try to meet a lot of people and network as this will help you get referrals to the right employer and the job you want. Use social media like Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook to grow your professional presence. Always make sure that your online information is as professional as possible. Employers make judgements on potential candidates based on information they find online, so keep it clean!
Use Your Network for Help
Your professional network can be a great source of job opportunities. If your network is not yet built up, work on growing it. Reach out to recruiters and industry peers to introduce yourself. Join groups online that align with your career goals and make as many connections as possible. It’s a good idea to join professional groups on sites such as LinkedIn and take part in discussions. Not only is it an excellent way to stay up-to-date on what’s happening in your industry, but you never know what can lead to a great job opportunity! Check out our Careers with CREDO page for updated opportunities and career advice!
Find a Career Advocate
A strong advocate can be a true asset in your job search and throughout your career. Look for IT staffing firms like CREDO Technology Solutions that specialize in matching IT job seekers with the right employers and positions. These organizations have insight into jobs which might not be listed elsewhere, and they can help you market your specific skill set. A recruiter may not have an immediate opportunity for you, but it is a good idea to subscribe to job boards and get someone working on your behalf so you are positioned and ready when something does come up. Services are free to job seekers, they understand the industry, and have access to decades of experience and resources.
Mindy Mihajlov, Manager of Technical Recruiting