It’s no secret that the world has gone digital—or that the remote world trend is here to stay. With the spread of the coronavirus, businesses across the country were forced to quickly adopt remote work models. And after the first wave of the coronavirus, many of those businesses decided to keep their temporary remote situations and make them permanent.
While this means developers have plenty more options when it comes to job-seeking, it also means that competition has become more fierce than ever. True: developers are needed in every industry. But as this career space thrives, so too does the struggle for the search. With that in mind, here are a few important job-seeking tips for software developers looking to thrive in a remote world.
Expand Your Skill Set
As a developer, you understand that programming is a rapidly evolving industry. As such, you should adopt this mindset. Every day, different languages and tools are adopted in the tech world, and it’s your job to pick and choose which you want to learn. From managing a container registry by JFrog to learning cloud platforms like AWS, there are several skills essential to your career as a software developer.
Many developers hone in on a specific language and live and breathe the tools that complement it. And while it’s true you should specialize in a certain area, the last thing you want to do is pigeonhole yourself into a box. Today’s companies want innovative developers that can think outside the box and understand modern technology; do your homework and pay attention to where current development trends are going.
Take Online Tests
Anytime you apply to a software development position, expect your expertise to be tested. How your employer tests you depends on the role in question. They might test your general knowledge of development skills, your creative capabilities, or require you to write code. For this reason, it’s important that you don’t oversell yourself on your resume. For example, if you say you’re proficient in Python but fail to do well on a test, it could look bad to your potential employer.
To help you better prepare, take online tests in your proficiencies. You should also conduct a search for tests at specific organizations. For example, Glassdoor offers insight into what interviews are like at different companies and you can use this information to get ahead of your formal interview process.
Prepare for a Behavioral Interview
In today’s workforce, company culture is more important than ever. Businesses don’t just want to know how proficient you are on your development skills, but how you work on cross-functional teams, manage your projects, and communicate with stakeholders. Generally speaking, the idea is to get an overall, comprehensive idea of your work style and personality. And in some cases, how you fit into the company culture can give you the leg up on someone who is more qualified on paper.
Behavioral interviews test candidates by asking them how they demonstrate specific knowledge, skills, abilities and behaviors, often in the context of previous experience and hypothetical scenarios. To prepare for behavioral questions, study the job ad and research potential questions they might ask. You can use the STAR interview response technique to guide you as you answer questions. The STAR techniques involves:
- Describing a specific situation
- Explaining the tasks that needed to be done
- Communicating the actions you took to get it done
- Describing the results that occurred as a result of your action
Participate in a Hackathon
Hackathons are events that take place over the course of one to a few days. These events are increasing in popularity in the tech world. During this time, participants are tasked with building an API, creating a user interface and program, and much more. This is a great way to meet potential employers and network with new peers—in the world of software development, you never know when networking can result in your next great workplace position. But more than that, it’s a great place to start to grow your skills and work on your problem-solving and creativity.