Congratulations! You've completed your computer science degree, this is a huge accomplishment and you should be super proud of yourself. Now is the time to kick back, relax and let the job offers roll in, right?
Wrong, now is the time to start getting your name out there, especially if you're struggling to stand out form the crowd of all the other computer science graduates! Not to mention those pesky self taught and coding bootcamp people.
Here is a list of all the steps you can take to rapidly get your first software developer job now that you've graduated.
- Get a LinkedIn account and make sure your profile is up to date, include any side projects you've worked on as well as any experience you have in the industry, even if it's just customer facing roles.
- Start writing short articles about your experiences as a computer science graduate, what obstacles you faced and how you overcame them. This will show that you are able to communicate your thoughts and experiences clearly as well as giving you a platform to share your work with potential employers. Share these on LinkedIn and reply to the comments you get.
- Start attending meetups, there are software developer meetups for almost every city and they're a great way to network with like minded people who can give you advice and help you on your job hunt. There are also lots of online communities you can join from Facebook and LinkedIn groups to Discords and Slacks.
- Show you can build, computer science graduates have the great technical foundations to be software developers but you need to show that you can build real world projects that work. This means showing you can solve problems with code that is maintainable and scalable. The best way to do this is with side projects that can be found and used online.
- Get a GitHub account and populate it with some side projects, this will show employers that you are passionate about code and are constantly learning new things. Ideally you want to have an introduction page on your GitHub that highlights what technical skills you have and the type of work you like doing.
- Start speaking to recruiters! Recruiters can be a great way to learn about new opportunities as well as giving you insights into the job market. They can also be a great help in getting your resume in front of the right people, and sometimes they have access to jobs that aren't advertised publicly. However, it's important to remember that not all recruiters are created equal. Some are better than others, and they are rarely technical so make sure they understand what you are capable of.
- Put together an amazing portfolio that showcases your skills and experiences. This is one of the most important things you can do to get a job as a software developer. You need to show not only that you can make something but also why you choose the technologies and approaches you took. A short summary of each project and what you did will really help give people and idea of what you can do. Make sure each project is hosted online and can be used.
- Read all of this site! We have loads of content on how to get your first job from dozens of free blog articles to an 80 page book on the topic!
There you have it, follow these steps and you'll be on your way to getting your first software developer job in no time! Good luck!
P.S. Check out our blog post on Skills required to be a full stack developer: a checklist if you want to get into the thriving world of web development.
P.P.S. If you're looking for a great software developer job, be sure to check out our job board