The days of walking into Human Resource Departments and filling out an application or sending out dozens and dozens of resumes via snail mail are a thing of the past. Hardly anyone hires that way anymore, especially in Information Technology. It is much easier to locate and apply for a position now online.
However, that has a down side. Yes, it is much easier for you to apply for jobs online, but that applies to everyone else too. So imagine how many resumes or notifications an HR Department or Hiring Manager receives from each position they post online. I have been told my managers that I have worked for that they receive hundreds even for very specific job titles. About half of them are usually not qualified and should have never been submitted in the first place, and the rest are weeded out until they get to a manageable number of between 5 -10 people to interview.
So if you are getting an interview these days in the tech world, pat yourself on the back and go in there with confidence because you probably made it through 100 job applicants.
How to Find a Job in IT
If the competition is so high for online jobs, what can you do to improve your odds? Well, there are certain sites that are much better than others and I try to focus on them instead of trying to manage dozens of career search engines. And trust me, there are many to choose from and you can get lost in trying to maintain them all. Not a week goes by that I don’t come across a new site that I have never heard of before.
With that being said, here are some of my recommendations to improve your odds with your job search.
Ways to Find a Job - Dice.com
One of the best sources of jobs in Information Technology is a site called Dice.com. You can search for online job listings by skill or job, by job title, by a specific company, by location or by employment type such as permanent or as an independent contractor.
They also provide practical advice on how to navigate the interview process for a typical tech hire since they can at times be tedious involving multiple rounds which multiple managers.
In addition, they offer the ability to create an online profile and upload your resume to make it searchable by companies.
If you are currently employed and are concerned that your employer might see you have an active resume online, you can block that specific company from seeing your resume, or you can block your name and contact number from being shown to any potential employer. They simply send a message to you through the Dice email system that is routed to the email address you have registered with the site. The only way they will know your email address is if you reply back, but by then you should know the identity of the company or recruiter.
The site also provides useful tools to help you in your career search such as:
- The Salary Surveys section provides a general description of hiring trends around regions of the country and the expected salary increases or decrease trend for a particular sector in IT. You can also search using an interactive map by clicking on an state and drilling down on the salary trends.
- The Dice Report which gives hiring trends and career advice.
- The Mad Skills section gives a listing of the type of skills that are currently in high demand.
- A Press Release section about everything related to industries and trends.
- Dice in the News highlight news around the tech world including updates on some of the most popular tech companies like Google and Facebook.
- Offers Dice Talent Communities which bring together like-minded people that work in specific fields so that you can follow industry or job specific news within your Dice Feed.
- A Dice Blog Network featuring industry specific articles about various subjects such as mobile development and how to get hired for specific jobs like a game developer.
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Find the Best Jobs - Monster.com
Along the same lines as Dice, there is a site called Monster.com. Both of these sites have been around for at least a decade and they have a large inventory of positions as well as a large network of employers.
If you don’t know how these sites work, the site is free for people looking for a job, but the employers can gain access to the site by paying a fee either monthly or yearly.
Similar to Dice, you can browse jobs by company, location or categories. They also have a career resource center where you can find information on trends, networking resources, resume writing advice and article on career advice for specific jobs.
You can create an online profile and upload your resume and they also have the same privacy measure as Dice.
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Ways to Find a Job - LinkedIn
I resisted setting up a LinkedIn profile for years but I finally got one up about three years ago.
If you don’t know what this site is, it’s basically a Facebook for business or for professionals without all of the pictures of people’s kids or what they are about to eat.
It took me a while to realize it but it’s also a great source for job contacts. A lot of employers looks for people on LinkedIn as well as post openings on the site.
In addition, you “connect” (not friend) people such as recruiters or past employers that you might want to use as references. From there they can contact you privately through the site.
The site allows you to set up a profile and enter as much information about your resume as you like. It is a much more robust resume because it allows you to lookup the specific companies you worked for in a database, then adds them to your profile.
However, I have not added all of my past employers because of one annoying Facebook-like feature it has. Once you add a company, it starts suggesting people for you to connect to and I don’t need any kind of nudge like that.
Also, if you are writer on a site like Infobarrel, it’s also another place to post an article from time to time so it will show up in other people’s feed. If your specialty is in any kind of writing, then you are basically providing a periodic writing sample to potential recruiters.
Those are just three of many sites online for finding jobs in IT. I usually keep my resume active on Dice and Monster even when I am working contract jobs. Most of my jobs only last three to six months so I like to plan out my next one so I can minimize the gaps in employment. However, if you do any kind of contract work, unexpected extended vacations are the norm.
If you decided to put your resume on either of these sites, I suggest you not put your real phone number. Trust me, if they want you, they will worry you to death. If they want to get in contact with you, they will. It is best to handle it through email at first so you can screen the job. If not, you are going to be talking to 10 to 15 recruiters when they get a hot job.
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