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I got caught in between during this recession brought by the pandemic; I lost my job. A very humbling experience.

I looked for greener pastures and made careful preparations before leaving my previous company, I signed the contract to a new employer and properly waived everyone goodbye. I was already out of my previous employer, taking sweet time learning React and .NET Core before my start date for my new employer. Ten days before my start date, while I was having breakfast, the recruiter sent me an email that the contract I signed was rescinded and my employment is therefore terminated before I could even start. I got caught in between.

I didn't take time to let it sink in, I immediately fired up my laptop, updated my resume and sent it to 26 job vacancies. I posted on LinkedIn and got sympathy and help. I got much appreciated messages from my previous CEO, manager, and client hoping me well and are open to help me. Three days after, I started receiving invites to interviews and I entertained where I believed I am qualified. Out of 26, I got processed up to the final interview for 3 of them, 1 immediately said that they would consider other candidates, the other two I never heard back from them.

Through the interviews, I learned a lot. The things I thought I was doing right and some practices got exposed. I was wrong on several things and I could say that I'm going outdated with the recent developments in the software development.

Here's what I've learned so far going through the experience.

  1. I've worked on my recent project for quite a while and I unconsciously limited myself from learning other things. I've been interested on React and ReactNative for quite a while and I didn't manage to find time to actually learn it, instead I confined myself on my subpar skills in Angular and that didn't help me through the interview. My point is, make time to learn things that stray from your comfort zone and what you're working on.

  2. Read the job description on what is offered to you. You might end up applying to a position you're not qualified. Also, you'll get an idea how other organizations do the same job you're doing. For example, I've seen a lot of DevOps engineer positions looking for people with experience on Test Automation. You might want to touch base with your previous colleagues and suggest things you've seen so they can keep themselves up to date.

  3. Some recruiters don't know exactly what they are looking for, and it is not their fault. I've been invited for DevOps engineer, Java Developer, Node.JS Developer, and many others; despite it was clear on my resume that my experience is on C# and Angular. Be patient and understanding, and it helps to give the recruiters an idea what to look for for those positions. Have the conversation end well for both of you, at the end of the day we're throwing ourselves at the mercy of the recruiters during initial contact.

  4. Keep your resume clean and concise. I had feedback that my one page resume is clean and inviting to take a look on. Most recruiters on initial contact would only ask about your recent experience or a gist of your experience related to the position you're applying for. The rest of your selling point will be discussed when you face technical interview, that's when you should do the talking about your experience.

  5. When talking during the interview, don't dig your own grave. Do not rush answering questions. I've done interview myself before and there are times we follow up on things that came out of the applicant's mouth. Be honest and admit what you don't know, it's better to come clean rather than have a hard time catching up on the job if you get hired.

  6. Sell yourself on things you know you excel, but not too much so you don't toot your horn. When talking about things you aren't good enough, follow up on what you think you can do to improve it.

  7. Lastly, there is no harm keeping professional relationships from your previous employment. They do come handy in times of need. So don't burn bridges!

That's it. I'm still going through this unfortunate circumstance and I know there's a lot of people on the same boat. I hope we get to learn more and get through this as soon as possible. I wish everyone good health and safety during these trying times.

Top comments (1)

francisaguilar21 profile image
Francis Aguilar

I'm sorry to hear what happened to you recently my friend. Kudos to you for looking in the brighter side and for sharing your learnings. Take care and let's catch up sometime after all of this :)