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How to get your first job as a Software Developer

Jordi Enric
Hey, I'm a self-taught senior Frontend Engineer + UX Designer. I'm writing about frontend, software, career advice and building things. Follow me on twitter if you like it @jordienr 😁
・2 min read

Lately I've been reviewing junior frontend CVs and technical tests at my current job to help with the hiring process. They kinda remind me of me when I started and I realize now all the things I could've done better.

First of all, there's a problem with people applying to jobs. Junior Frontend job offers can easily get 100+ sign-ups. It's impossible to check them all. If you don't have a degree or have no experience, or both, it's really easy for your CV to be ignored. I know it sucks, I've been there. But that's the reality.

Maybe Netflix, Google and Apple can afford to hire enough people to check all the CVs but most businesses don't.

What I recommend you do is cultivate a network so you don't have to rely on this process to find jobs. I did this without realizing.

Building your network

I know most developers despise LinkedIn but without it, I probably wouldn't have made it. I wouldn't say I have a LinkedIn strategy but here's what I believe works best.

  1. Find job-offers you want to apply to.

  2. Connect with people from that company (use the LinkedIn search to find them)

  3. Ask someone, recruiters or engineers, questions about the offer. Be polite. Let them know you know they are busy, and it's okay if they can't respond.

  4. Ask them who can you contact to ask more questions about the offer (whoever is in charge of the process)

  5. Add them through LinkedIn and pitch them (politely) why you think you're a good fit for the job.

You'll probably have to do this a bunch of times until you get a job, but in the process you're cultivating a pretty good LinkedIn network.

With a LinkedIn network when you share stuff about what you're learning and building they will see it and most (in my experience) will like it. Eventually you'll start getting connection requests and messages from people that are looking for Junior Developers.

In my experience, most people are pretty cool with you contacting them and will try to help you somehow if you let them know you're looking for a job. Specially developers.

Some will be assholes, forget about it and move on.

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