Needless to mention, an on-the-job experience does add value to the resume of an upcoming software developer. Seen as a measure for the skills you acquired during the course of your employment, the very mention of experience brightens the chances of a software developer aspiring to make a career change. While experienced professionals are on one side of the continuum, there are others who do not have any job experience at the other end.
And if you are one of those software professionals who do not have any working experience but are actively looking for a job change, you can turn this very obstacle into your advantage. With every job listing quoting experience as the main criteria for shortlisting, here are some hacks that will help software developers land in a job even without experience.
Your Skillset Is Your Key to Success
You, as a software professional without experience, do not need to actually worry about getting placed, provided you try to look at the situation from the employer’s perspective. The hiring manager associated with a software company does not want your academic credentials or your earlier job experience. He is basically looking out for a person who can add value to his business through a list of skills. And the following strategies will help you develop certain skills, compelling hiring managers to choose you over others.
1. Let Your Online Presence Become Your Resume
Your name says it all!
Interviewers will look up your name on Google to get an idea of what you were up to in the recent past in your endeavor to kick start a coding career. Hence, it is very important for you to start a blog. Your professional blog should have articles penned by you about the technologies you are specializing in.
Sharing your learning about different languages with your followers is another way to gain online visibility. Such an effort is not only indicative of your ever expanding knowledge but also speaks volumes of your helpful nature. Your interest in the subject can be seen when you try to offer solutions to queries posed by your online followers. This way, your blog demonstrates that you are up-to-date with the emerging trends in your chosen area of software coding; a differentiating factor for your resume to get shortlisted.
2. A Portfolio of Small Projects You Worked On and Delivered
It pays for software developers without coding experience to have a portfolio of all the works done by them. Enlisting a couple of small coding projects that you were a part of will attract the attention of the employer. Through these projects, he will be able to assess your coding skills and would want to give you a chance to prove your merits by offering you a placement.
In addition to your coding projects, it is advisable to include automated or unit tests that were conducted by you on an application. This is another way to highlight your abilities to write and test software code.
3. Open Source Contributions
Another innovative way to make a mark for yourself during an entry-level coding interview is to contribute to open source. Designed to be altered and updated by public, your role in the Open Source Software (OSS) community can show off your caliber. The moment you start submitting small bugs that were identified by you, you are sure to influence the entire OSS community. Other programmers will benefit from the bugs you report. You can also choose to submit a couple of open source projects using Ruby on Rails, Go and Rubinius.
4. Your Decision to “Work For Free”
You can go the extra mile by offering your coding services to an organization for free. Nevertheless, such a decision should be backed by a stringent contract. The conditional clause that you will work without pay for a specified period and after that, you should be paid for your services and expertise.
Internships can be accepted by novice software developers so as to demonstrate both their strengths and weakness. Such arrangements while offering you the on-the-job experience can also make you a potent employee in the same company when the management begins to take notice of your software coding skills.
5. Start Your Own Software Development Company
You need not always work under somebody to take back home a monthly paycheck. Blessed with entrepreneurial skills, you can go ahead and set up your software development company while you are still working on your coding skills. A small company to start with can be an intelligent move to make a mark for yourself in the software business.
Your company can become the gateway for your success when you begin to develop and sell applications. While doing this, you can tag your name with the experience of a software developer. You can also choose to develop your company’s website to legitimize your move of associating yourself with your company. Lastly, after all this spade work is complete, you can go ahead and draft your resume, mentioning the role you played as a software developer of your company.
6. Interview Preparation
In an attempt to crack a job interview, it is important for software developers without coding experience to prepare for all types of FAQs (frequently asked questions). Taking the assistance of acquaintances in your chosen field of specialization, you can attempt to solve tricky mock questions posed by them. Interview preparation time is crucial for you when you as a developer without experience will have to answer difficult questions, while it can be a cakewalk for experienced professionals. Although it is unfair, you can still crack the interview with extra preparedness. Eventually, it is only through your dedicated job preparation efforts that you will be able to offset the disadvantage of not having the support of experience to land up in a software coding job.
7. Let Your Certifications Speak About Your Coding Skills
Last but not the least, certifications are invaluable when it comes to helping you grab a coding job. Signing up and completing a certification course will definitely work in your favor. Employees will attach significance to the certifications, demonstrating your interest in a particular software coding language and will eventually select you for a job opening.
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