Greg Pfaff, a Senior Recruiter at Razorfish, offers ideas on how to market yourself to the digital community. Helpful information as the Spring Job & Internship Fair fast approaches. Be sure to visit their booth on 1/30 at Kimmel and again on 2/6 at the Engineering & Technology Spring Career Fair at NYU-Poly for more information.
“Marketing yourself as a developer”
A major barrier for students coming out of a university looking for jobs is that they lack “professional experience”. Most companies have tight deadlines and can’t afford to train or take a chance on a rising star in the development world. Sadly, this leads to solid engineers/students being passed on with lots of potential. Here are three things that every student should do to make themselves as marketable as possible coming right out of college.
Keep an up-to-date social coding profile.
It is so important to show potential hiring managers how active you are on social networking coding sites like Github and Codepen. It shows that you not only have a thirst to learn/solve problems but you are active about it in the community. Additionally, you could also take a website that is currently live and re-code it to make it better. Also, have your own online portfolio, a central hub for all potential employers to see. Put all of your ideas/concepts/passion projects/live websites on there. These are great ways to visually showcase what you have done and most importantly gives managers a way to tangibly see your code. This could give you a leg up against competition when going through an interview process.
Attend industry events.
These are a great way to get your name out there. The development community is thriving and it seems every technology or framework you could imagine has their own local Meetup group and the best part is they are usually free. Being part of your local development scene will not only open doors for you in terms of potential freelance and full-time opportunities but it will give you a chance to meet with local/likeminded individuals and experts of technology who are a wealth of information to your learning process. Secondly, you could attend a development conference. These usually aren’t free but they are great way to learn about the cutting edge technologies and strategies being used. They are usually hosted yearly and have all the major contributors in technology. They can be a great source of inspiration and education.
Find a development mentor.
The development community is extremely friendly. Everyone is out to solve problems and having a mentor can grow your skill set very quickly. Remember: they were once in your shoes so they can understand the frustrations of staring at SublimeText for hours. Most of the developers and engineers I have had conversations with were ready, willing and able to try and help me through a development problem I was having. It is a very open and helpful community and asking questions while having them explained real-time is something that is a decided advantage over a StackOverflow or Quora.