The Ultimate Guide to Getting a Job in Tech | SheCodes

The Ultimate Guide to Getting a Job in Tech

Working in tech has many perks. Discover how you can start your journey to working in tech!

Welcome

Start your journey to working in tech today!

Now that you’ve learned how to code, you're probably wondering what's next. Throughout SheCodes workshops, you’ve gained a variety of technical skills that are necessary to enter the tech world or work towards becoming a developer/engineer. 

We’re here to help you present your new coding skills in a way that will help you land a job in tech that you’ll love! After reading this guide, you’ll have a better idea of what you should do next to help you reach your goal of working in tech.

We’ll discuss:
  • First steps to transitioning to a job in tech
  • Why work in tech
  • The most popular jobs in tech today
  • Where to look for jobs in tech
  • How to prove your tech skills
  • How to find a good job fit
  • And more!
5/5 - Highly recommended

SheCodes made a career in technology become so much more accessible. Before, I was so intimidated to go into a field I didn't have a degree in. Now, I feel like a tech job is in my future! Matt is a great instructor and the program is set up to make sure you succeed.

First step to transitioning to a job in tech

Check out the first step to help you transition to a career in tech!

The first step in transitioning to a job in tech is to learn how to code. Gaining some coding knowledge is useful whether or not you'd like to become a developer/engineer. Learning how to code will create a strong foundation for you to enter the tech world because you'll better understand or better work with your products. 

So, after gaining some coding knowledge, you're ready to start your journey to working in tech! 
In case you haven’t already learned how to code, you can do so by first joining our free introduction to coding class and then completing our hands-on coding workshops. Remember, upon first learning how to code it’s very important to specialize and not learn too many new coding languages at once, especially if you’re working towards becoming a developer. 

Coding knowledge is useful no matter which role in tech you’re interested in, even if you don’t want to become a developer/engineer. It’s becoming more necessary to know how to code so you can better your communication with the developers in your company, understanding of your company’s products, and overall workflow. Coding skills will also help make you a more valuable, multi-skilled employee even if you decide not to transition into a tech role.
“I do not expect myself to become a coder, but I am having lots of conversations with tech people either at Microsoft or with the IT departments of my customers. Understanding coding and the technology behind things helps me a lot when having these conversations.”
If you’re interested in getting a job in tech, then SheCodes Plus is a great workshop to help you make this transition. You’ll improve your professional skill set by gaining advanced coding skills and learning about website hosting, using real-life APIs, and development workflow. When working towards becoming a developer/engineer, you’ll need to gain a solid coding foundation. If this is your goal, then SheCodes Pro is the workshop for you. You'll learn everything in SheCodes Plus, along with responsive development and React.  

After you’ve gained some hands-on coding knowledge, you’re ready to begin your journey to working in tech. Read on to discover some benefits to working in tech.

Why work in tech

Working in tech can provide you with many benefits!

Working in tech can supply you with a plethora of opportunities and widely expand your career horizons. Not only is tech on the rise today, but jobs in tech can offer you unforeseen benefits.

Some benefits to working in tech include: 
  • More interesting and fulfilling work
  • Possibility for more job flexibility
  • The ability to work remotely in many cases
  • An increased salary

Benefits of working in tech

Working in the tech industry can offer you benefits that you won't necessarily be able to find in other industries. Many SheCodes graduates have transitioned to careers in tech and couldn't be happier! 
  • Natalia went from a Store Manager to a Junior Web Developer and discovered that she enjoys her work more, has better working hours, and has higher pay. 
  • Lea snagged a job as a Front End Developer and found that her work happiness has wildly increased.
  • Daniela became a Freelance Developer and is now able to experience more freedom in her work and spend more time with family.
  • Maura transitioned from a retail sales associate to a Software Developer and is enjoying the flexibility she now has.

The benefits you can gain from working in tech are infinite! 
“SheCodes was my first coding course, so it started my development journey and thanks to this course and the knowledge I gained, I realized that coding and web development is the right path for me... It pushed me in the right direction, gave me the courage to apply for a job in Web Development and change my career... The job I have now gives me joy and this is actually the most important thing to me, even though both working hours and pay I have now are much better.
“Thanks to the React JS knowledge that I have gained in SheCodes, I was able to land my current job as a front-end developer at a company in the e-mobility industry… Coding raised my happiness level from 0 to 1000000. I can't imagine myself in other work now.”
“Becoming a developer has allowed me to work remotely, enjoy the work more, work within an industry I find interesting, and spend more time with family.
"The benefits that I have now because of SheCodes that I didn't have in my previous job are almost infinite. I'm so happy that I diversified my skills outside of retail and gave myself the ability to really work wherever I want."
- Maura Dolphin, Software Developer, SheCodes Graduate

Where to look for jobs in tech

Find your perfect job in tech!

Are you interested in finding your perfect job in tech? Jobs can be found in a variety of ways, whether it be online with job search sites or in person through your network. 

Utilizing your own network is often a great place to start. Finding acquaintances or friends of friends who work at certain companies can definitely be a big help to aid you in getting your foot in the door and give you an advantage over other candidates. 

You can also use popular job platforms online to find the tech jobs of your dreams.

Growing Your Network

When looking for a new job, your network is one of your most valuable resources. So make sure you take advantage of your network and also try to build it up as much as you can. Your network could be people you went to school with, past or present coworkers, the SheCodes community, etc. Attending both online and offline events can be helpful in growing your network. You can grow your network online through LinkedIn, social media groups, platforms like SheCodes Connect, and Alumni groups. You can grow your network onsite through events such as tech meet-ups, university alumni events, etc. These events can be beneficial in growing your network with people who can likely connect you with relevant technological job opportunities. As far as onsite events go, conferences are often a waste of time for beginners, though. This is because conferences can be very expensive and time-consuming to attend and you rarely get to network as much as you’d like.

Utilizing Your Network/Cold Outreach

The best way to get a job in tech is to get in touch directly with a company where you’d like to work. If you have any acquaintances at the company, it’s helpful to reach out to them and get a contact email of who you should get in touch with. You can either have your contact connect you directly with a hiring manager via email or cold email the hiring manager and say that you were referred by your contact at the company. A referral will likely give you an advantage over other candidates. Or, if you don’t have any contacts at a company where you’d like to work, you can also track down hiring manager’s email addresses online. If they’re not readily available on the company website, then there are many tracking tools available that you can use. A useful tool for tracking down email addresses to cold contact is https://hunter.io/

Here are some helpful templates for cold contacting people at companies
“When I learned to code with SheCodes, I saw this as an opportunity to start in a new direction. The company my fiancé works at was looking for a front end developer and my fiancé suggested me. Then I officially applied for the job and was able to convince in the interview. I’m happy to start the new year with my new job as a frontend developer.”
-
Katrin Parizek, Front End Web Developer at Zynex AG, SheCodes Graduate

Popular Job Platforms

It can also be helpful to search on popular job platforms such as the ones listed below. Please note that the popularity of the platforms varies from country to country. 
  • LinkedIn - this is a great way to showcase your professional skills online, attract the attention of employers, expand your professional network, and easily apply to jobs. It’s a valuable platform to find a job no matter the country you live in.
  • Indeed - a platform specializing solely in job search. Keep in mind that you can use different versions of this site depending on the country where you’re located. For example - Portugal, France, Australia, etc.
  • Glassdoor - this platform is great to search for jobs, discover average salaries, and find company reviews. It’s popular in the U.S. but also in countries in Europe like Germany and France.

How to prove your tech skills

You can prove your tech skills with more than just a university degree!

In the past, it used to be mandatory to prove your coding skills with a university degree. This was required and pretty non-negotiable when it came to finding a job in tech, especially as a coder. Nowadays, it’s not required anymore.

Today, the number of companies in the U.S. that require a university degree to get a job as a software engineer is dwindling. Even large corporations like Apple and Google are not requiring degrees as much as they used to

So instead of proving your skills with a degree, you can prove your skills in other ways these days, such as with hands-on projects and online profiles. 

Hands-on Projects

One great way to prove your skills is by showcasing projects that you’ve completed, such as the 5 hands-on projects in SheCodes Pro. It’s great to demonstrate that you’ve completed some hands-on coding work and have utilized your knowledge in creating real-life projects instead of just learning theory. Here are some examples of the kinds of projects you can showcase to potential employers.

It’s also great to compile all of your coding projects in one place. An online portfolio is a useful means for doing this. It’s useful to have a personal website to show what you’ve worked on, things you like in life, fun facts, etc. to give potential employers a well-rounded idea of what kind of person and worker you are. Here’s an example of a great personal website built by a SheCodes student. If you know how to code, then you can build a portfolio like this by yourself. We teach this in SheCodes Pro and this skill is extremely impressive to employers. You’re able to host your website online for free, but if you’d like to spend just a little bit of money, you can use something like Squarespace to buy your very own domain name for around $10. This will most likely impress potential employers and present you as a more valuable and skilled employee. 
5/5 - Highly recommended

Another great workshop! This was a great course for fine tuning skills for responsive websites. It was fun building my own portfolio that I can share with potential employers!

Resume and Online Profiles

Your resume and online profiles can also be useful tools to demonstrate your tech skills to potential employers. Whereas having a traditional resume is important, it’s also important to have your skills and experience somewhere online like LinkedIn

LinkedIn can be useful to: 
  • Capture the attention of employers
  • Grow your network
  • Share your skills (such as with a digital coding certificate that you can link to your profile) 

Online profiles like those on SheCodes are also great to show off your marketable skills and provide context to your coding and other relevant experience.
“During my job search, when I started to add my coding knowledge to my CV - even very basic knowledge of what I had learned - I could tell that it meant a lot to companies that I had this knowledge.
-
Cyrielle Hadamitzki, Tech Support Engineer at Postman, SheCodes Graduate

Acing your tech Interview

The tech interview is a very important part of the hiring process. It’s a great way to further prove your skills and ensure that you have a better chance of snagging your dream job in tech. 

The hiring process for tech companies often consists of a phone screen, a technical phone interview, and an onsite interview. The onsite interview is especially important. You’ll likely have interview questions to test your technical abilities and assess if you’re a good fit for the company. This will also work the other way and will help you see if the company is a good fit for you.

Check out some useful tips on how to prepare for a general tech interview here:

Check out some possible interview questions based on the job roles listed here

How to find a good job fit

Check out these tips for finding your perfect tech job!

There are many things to consider when searching for your ideal job in tech. It's important to think about things such as what kind of company you'd like to work for and whether or not you'd like to relocate. It's also pertinent to keep in mind that you need to stay active, Imposter Syndrome is normal, and you must stay updated in the tech world.

Read on to discover some tips for finding your perfect job in tech!

What kind of company should I work for?

It’s really important to find a job at a company that you like. It’s good to mix tech and something you like (such as travel) - because being passionate about the company’s mission, message, products and/or services is important and will likely help you get the job. We recommend that you apply only to companies that you’re really interested in and don’t apply to 100’s of companies every day with the same application. It’s good to personalize your applications as much as possible and really dedicate the proper time and energy to each application that you fill out.

When searching for your first job in tech, it may be tempting to try and work for only the biggest tech companies. But you shouldn’t only try to work at companies like Google or Microsoft, this could be a waste of time because it’s very competitive. It’s best to apply to smaller tech companies, especially at the start of your tech career - ideally to companies where you might know someone who works there or you have some sort of connection. 

Here are some advantages of working at smaller tech companies over large tech corporations: 
  • University degrees in programming are usually not required (whereas they are often required to work for big/corporate companies).
  • The environment is oftentimes more flexible, casual, and fast-paced.
  • You’ll likely do a lot of learning on the job and will wildly increase your skill set and grow your resume. 
  • Each employee’s work is crucial to the company’s overall success so you won’t just feel like another cog in the machine as you could if you work for a large corporation.

Should I relocate for a job?

Whether or not you should relocate for a job is up to you. Job opportunities obviously vary from city to city but it’s not mandatory to move to get your dream job in tech. There are tech opportunities all around the globe. 

If you can’t move or decide that you’d like to stay put where you are, then at least the first year of your job should be in the city where you live and are comfortable. Even if you don’t begin working in tech in your dream job, any job you get will be a good stepping stone to help you get where you want to be.

If you can and want to move, then it’s a good idea to move somewhere with a high concentration of tech companies because that will provide you with the most opportunities. Cities that are tech hubs include San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Austin, Amsterdam, Berlin, London, Barcelona, Sydney, and Singapore. Moving to a city like one of these could expand your opportunities for getting your ideal job in tech.

Can I work as a freelancer?

Working as a freelancer is a big draw for working in tech. It’s very attractive because of the flexibility and seemingly endless opportunities. You’ll always have an uncle who’d like you to build a website. This is possible if you decide that’s what you’d like to pursue. Take it from SheCoder Daniela Arias
A few weeks before the end of my final SheCodes React project, I landed freelance development work with a Brooklyn based web design company.” 
However, it's generally not recommended to work as a freelancer at the start of your journey working in tech. It’s often better to gain experience in a part-time or full-time role first and then become a freelancer if that's what you'd like. Working in an office setting may be more beneficial for you than working remotely when starting a new role. This is because the best thing is to surround yourself with people who are very experienced in the field. Starting off working with a team is great so you can learn from them instead of entering the field doing freelance work on your own. This helps you become more prepared to get a freelance job down the line if that’s your goal. 

Sometimes technical roles involve fully remote work from the start, though. This is great as long as you have a team to support you and you can get the proper help you need to learn and grow your skills. 

Important things to remember during your job search

There are many important things to remember during your job search that’ll prove to be beneficial in helping you snag a job in tech.

Stay active
While you search for a job in tech, stay active. You should constantly work on projects to keep your knowledge up to date. Searching for a job can be like a full time job, but you must make time to keep your coding skills sharp and continue to grow them. It’s really important to keep your skills fresh to show potential employers that you are dedicated to putting these skills to use in a work environment. You should spend about half of your time looking for jobs and half of your time maintaining your coding skills by working on projects. 

Remember that Imposter Syndrome is normal
Impostor syndrome is the inability to believe that your success is legitimate and well-deserved and has resulted from your own effort and skills. It’s extremely common in the coding world, especially for new coders. 

This can be difficult to remember when you’re searching for a new job. For instance, if there’s a job ad that mentions a lot of skills that you don’t have, you don’t necessarily need to learn all of the skills listed. There’s no way you can know everything. It’s better to know a couple of skills well rather than learning 10 new things. In cases like this, you should still apply and highlight that you are specialized and are a quick learner. And believe in and trust your coding skills and knowledge! You’ve worked hard to gain them.

So always keep in mind that Imposter Syndrome is normal and you deserve your coding successes. 

Keep up to date in the tech world
You should also always keep up to date in regards to what’s going on in the tech world. This is important because the tech industry is constantly changing and you need to make sure you’re well-equipped with updated knowledge to work in this industry. 

Here are some useful tips for keeping your tech knowledge sharp:
  • Create an account on Twitter. Follow a few tech accounts and developers on Twitter and check their accounts daily or weekly. Here are a few developer profiles on Twitter that may interest you:
    • Jeff Atwood (@codinghorror), co-founder of stackoverflow.com
    • Una Kravets (@Una), front-end developer and dev advocate
    • Kevin Pilche-Bisson (@Pilchie), software design engineer at Microsoft
    • Wes Bos (@wesbos), full-stack developer who teaches courses on JavaScript and React
    • Veni Kunche (@venikunche), founder and software engineer
    • Jessie Frazelle (@jessfraz), co-founder and CPO at Oxide Computer Company 
  • Read tech news to be aware of what’s going on in the tech world. Find a few websites that you like and check them daily or weekly. You can follow tech news on websites like:
  • You should have a GitHub account and should remain active on it. This is important to demonstrate that you’re an avid, motivated, and competent coder. This is useful even if you don’t want to become a developer in that it shows your dedication to technology, working on your own personal projects, and contributing to others’ projects.
  • If you’d like to become a product designer, you should have a Dribbble account because this is a great way to showcase your work and garner the attention of some design professionals. 

Next steps

Start your journey to working in tech today!

So now that you’ve read this guide, you should know the next steps to getting your dream job in tech. You should also be aware of: 
  • why you should work in tech, 
  • where to look for jobs,
  • how to prove your tech skills, 
  • how to find a good job fit, 
  • interview tips, 
  • and more! 

Get ready to start working in tech today!
It’s time to put your coding skills into practice and follow some of the tips mentioned in this guide. If you work hard, then you really stand a chance of getting a job in tech.

In a nutshell, here are our best tips for getting a job in tech:
  • Learning to code in a hands-on coding workshop
  • Practice gaining confidence and fighting impostor syndrome by keeping your coding skills fresh and trusting your knowledge.
  • Start slow with an internship or an entry-level job in tech to learn how the tech job market works and gain some more hands-on experience in a low pressure environment
  • Get out there and actively hunt for a job. You’ll become a tech pro in no time! 
"After SheCodes, I felt confident enough to attempt the next step in my career. SheCodes left me feeling more capable and prepared... The jobs I ended up applying for, and ultimately landing, required some knowledge of JavaScript, GitHub, and APIs, all of which SheCodes covered!”
- Natalie Niehaus, Quality Analyst Engineer at Liberty University, SheCodes Graduate
5/5 - Highly recommended

I'm so excited and incredible proud of myself for completing the full SheCodes workshop! I can't wait to see what the future holds. I learned so much and can't wait to continue grow and gain even more knowledge and skills towards my goal of becoming a Front-End Developer.

Written by Lexi Dillon
Contributed by Daniela Miranda, Matt Delac
📬

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