We’ve all heard complaints from those trying to land a specialized kind of job in today’s turbulent economy. Some of these tech job seekers in fields as diverse as SEO handling or .NET production are experiencing some of the same difficulties as those in different industries. However, there are ways to stay competitive as an IT professional.
Some of these tactics have to do with understanding the biggest challenges that are out there and how to get proactive about handling them. Others have to do with marketing yourself as a competent tech professional. Here are a few tips often mentioned by experts and some of those who have experience in the trenches.
Do Utilize the Keywords for Tech Jobs
Many seekers for tech jobs are frustrated by the idea that they need to “game the system” by entering relevant keywords into resumes so that computers will send them higher, rather than rejecting them out of hand. It does seem that HR departments are relying entirely too much on keyword analysis for resume submissions, but there is a side to this that somewhat practical. Even if you are not aiming to target resume-scanning software, being explicit about your skills can only help.
As a general rule, those looking for IT work should be pretty thorough in including keywords about their skills and qualifications, especially those that are very common and in demand within a particular industry. For example, don’t just say you are a “proficient software programmer:” include items like J2EE, PHP, HTML, CSS, etc. One additional note: it important to be confident in the technologies represented by the key words that are included.
Don’t Ignore Networking Potential
Since many HR processes are so computer oriented, it’s become even more important for hunters for tech jobs in almost any scenario to have some kind of connection to someone else who has a job in the field. This is true whether you are trying to become a gardener or work for a marketing agency.
Of course, it’s easier to talk about the value of networking than it is to actually reach out. Still, those who do spend the extra time patrolling job fairs, checking in with colleagues and associates or otherwise cultivating personal connections can often see themselves skipping several steps in a tedious and frustrating resume submission process.
Don’t Lose Sight of Goals and Objectives
One additional point is that many job seekers tend to drop a lot of their original motivations in order to just “get any job” – perversely, this can actually harm the submission process, where interviewers or others may see this kind of scattershot approach as either desperate or lacking initiative. Bringing clear goals and objectives to the table can be part of polishing a career during the period of change.