Entering the tech industry can be a thrilling yet challenging journey. You start with so much enthusiasm, but after several rejections, reality sets in, and your hopes of breaking into tech feel like a pipedream.
With the right strategies, you can navigate this competitive landscape and improve your chances of securing your first tech role.
Here are five essential tips to help you on your way:
1. Master the Basics and Keep Learning
Before applying for tech positions, ensure you have a solid foundation in the basics. Depending on your chosen field (e.g., software development, data analysis, UX design), this might include programming languages, algorithms, or specific tools and platforms.
Moreover, the tech industry is constantly evolving. Continuous learning is not only a requirement but a valuable asset. Engage with online courses, tutorials, and communities to stay updated with the latest trends in your space.
One strategy that often gets overlooked while looking for a tech role with no previous experience is volunteering. Beyond its altruistic benefits, volunteering allows you to apply your technical skills in real-life scenarios and build hands-on experience.
It also helps you work on projects you can showcase in your portfolio and get credible references and recommendations, boosting your credibility in job searches.
3. Build a Diverse Portfolio
A portfolio is your calling card in the tech world. It’s a tangible representation of your skills and capabilities. Include a variety of projects that showcase your versatility. If you’re a developer, demonstrate proficiency in different languages or frameworks. For UX designers, display a range of user interfaces and experiences.
Remember to document your process - from ideation to execution. This provides a glimpse into your problem-solving abilities and creativity.
4. Network and Engage in Tech Communities
There are so many online Tech communities you can join now; some are even specific to your niche. Join these online communities and make yourself visible in them. Engage in discussions and network with peers or mentors if the opportunity arises.
Aside from the networking benefits, these communities schedule online skill-up sessions or webinars to help their community members gain more knowledge about specific topics. They also serve as job boards where job opportunities are advertised regularly.
5. Showcase Soft Skills and Teamwork
In addition to technical skills, soft skills are highly valued in the tech industry. In most interviews, technical skills are not the only thing being considered; soft skills like effective communication, problem-solving, and teamwork are essential attributes employees look for. Highlight instances where you collaborated on a project, resolved conflicts or demonstrated leadership skills.
Tech roles often require cross-functional collaboration, so being able to work well with others is a significant asset.
Remember, these tips are not just some magic wand you can wave overnight to get your first job. They require effort on your path and often take time for you to start reaping the rewards.
I’ll end this article with a sentence from Nigerian novelist Sefi Atta: everything good will come.
Jesutofunmi from UPFOLIO.