The job market is the best it has been in a decade. That’s good news for recent college graduates looking for entry-level jobs. Even so, more opportunities doesn’t mean equal opportunities. Some entry-level jobs in software development are better than others, especially if you’re focused on a long-term career.
So how do you land a prized entry-level position at a company where you’ll thrive and grow over time? To set yourself apart from other candidates, here’s what you have to do:
Be Willing to Relocate
National employment statistics can be deceiving. While the country may be adding jobs overall, the actual availability of entry-level jobs varies from state-to-state and town-to-town. The reality is that in some parts of the country, jobs are plentiful. In others, not so much.
In a competition for entry-level jobs, your willingness to relocate is an advantage. Graduates who have an open mind, who see life as an adventure, and feel that they can make a home anywhere will have better long-term job prospects than those who ‘must’ live in a particular city or state.
Learn What Matters
You’ve probably noticed that a gut-wrenchingly high number of so-called entry-level jobs actually require one to two years’ experience. To compete for those jobs, you have to find a way to get that experience. To land an entry-level jobs in software development, that means learning the technologies that are or will be the most in-demand.
Whether you have some programming experience or not, the key is to learn the technologies that many organizations need but not enough people know. If you learn a technology that everyone knows, but then demand for that knowledge falls, you’ll be competing with a lot of people for a smaller number of jobs. Instead, start your career by focusing on the technologies that have more demand but fewer qualified workers who know them.
Keep an Ear to the Ground
A lot of job openings get distributed through ‘whisper networks.’ That just means that an organization will ask its employees and strategic partners to spread the word that it’s hiring. To tap into these informal networks, it’s not enough that you have friends who work for the organization. You have to let them know that you’re on the market. Make sure your friends know that you’re looking for a job and what kinds of jobs that you’re looking for. When they catch wind of something that fits, they’ll be more likely to think of you.
Don’t Rule Out Internships
Internships can be a good way to boost your resume and establish yourself with a desirable company. Not only can you get some on-the-job training, but you start building a network of professionals who can vouch for your talent. They become advocates and references as you move on to other positions and build a career.
Organizations don’t always promote internships. They may not even have a formal internship program. If that’s the case, don’t be deterred. It can’t hurt to reach out and propose the idea to them. Just keep your career in mind when you make the pitch. It should be a mutually beneficial experience for you and the organization.
Another alternative to internships and job boards are hiring programs like Revature’s.
Finding Entry-Level Jobs Through Revature
Speaking of in-demand technologies and how to learn them, Revature is a firm committed to helping recent college grads develop the experience and skills they need not only to get an entry-level job, but to build a career.
Unlike organizations that charge you fees to learn coding and programming skills, Revature pays for our recruits to go through an intensive and customized 12-week program, where they learn and practice the technologies required for entry-level jobs in software development.
By the end of the training program, you’ll have a feel for the real-world, enterprise-level environment in which software developers work. On top of that, we’ll place you in a job with one of our many clients.
Learn more about joining our team.