It's critically important for tech job seekers to keep their tech skills and certifications current, to network both inside and outside the tech industry, to highlight their accomplishments, and to use social media to enhance a job search.
When you're in the midst of a tech job search or about to start a search for a tech job, it's helpful to get advice from the hiring side of the desk, especially in the tech industry where it's really competitive and your skills are critical for effective job searching in a challenging job market.
Adage Technologies, a Chicago-based web and software development company, has grown 25% over the last year and has hired several new team members to support this growth. Having looked at countless resumes, attended numerous recruiting events, and conducted interviews, Adage has developed several tips for tech professionals looking for a job in this economy.
Patrick Emmons, Director of Professional Services, Adage Technologies shares tips for landing a job in the tech industry.
Top Tips for Tech Job Seekers
Look outside the typical industry hot spots. Silicon Valley and San Francisco are not the only locations for booming tech companies. For example, Chicago is home to companies like Adage Technologies, which was able to grow 25% in a down economy.
Keep your technical skills up to date. If you are unemployed, download some free tools such as Visual Web Studio from Microsoft and learn about the new software. Or, work on getting an Apple Developer license and download their IDE, and then create a simple iPhone app. You've got the time, and more importantly, will show potential employers that you have a passion to learn.
Continue networking. Join trade associations like TechAmerica, the Business Technology Association, or the AeA (American Electronics Association) who regularly host networking events and conferences. Also, look to your own alma mater for networking opportunities and work within your own inner circle.
Utilize social media. Stay active on Twitter and join LinkedIn groups like Tech Recruiters, Tech & Job Expo or TED. It is important to be a part of the conversations that are going on in the social media world. LinkedIn groups also have great insights on job postings and provide opportunities to connect with recruiters.
Make sure to highlight key accomplishments on your resume. It is important to keep your resume relevant and up to date. The best times to update your resume are right after a meeting with your current boss or team, when projects and accomplishments are still fresh in your mind.
Emphasize your skills beyond technical expertise. A recent article found that when the recession hit, people had to take on multiple jobs to accommodate layoffs. Now companies coming out of the recession are expecting people with a variety of skills. Don't sell yourself as someone who just sits and writes code - stress your strategic thinking, leadership skills, and other attributes as well.