Key Things You Should Do Before Applying For Your Next IT Job
30 Aug 18 by Jason Bishop
When you’re just starting out in a job search, it’s tempting to jump headfirst into the market without too much thought; sending out CVs and applying for any job that’s relevant to your experience. There is one problem with this approach though; preparation will often be overlooked.
Outlined below are four key things to do before applying for a job in the IT industry.
Update Social Media Accounts
If an employer is interested in an application, the first thing many will do today is take a look at the applicant’s social media presence. A lot of what we say and do online can end up in the public domain and it’s surprising how much can actually be found out online.
Before sending off any applications, it’s important to check your LinkedIn and other social media accounts. Are they up-to-date and accurate? Would you be happy for a potential employer to see what’s visible?
When updating your LinkedIn profile, ensure that it’s aligned to your CV and representative of any experience, achievements and career goals. If you have recommendations from previous managers and clients, it can also help strengthen your personal brand.
It’s not just about LinkedIn though. Read through recent posts on other social media platforms (anything that can be seen publicly) such as Twitter and Facebook. If you wouldn’t be comfortable having an employer see what’s there, take a look at the privacy settings and then do another check.
As an extra precaution, it can also be a good idea to Google yourself to find out what someone else would see.
Review Your CV
The CV is still one of the most important parts of the recruitment process and will usually be one of the first things that a potential employer reads about you and your application. That’s why it’s crucial for it to be in the best shape possible.
Have you reviewed the content before sending it out? This is especially important for IT professionals who have been in the same job for some time, as it will most likely need a refresh.
Make sure it’s updated to reflect the value that you’ve added in recent positions, as well new skills and experience gained during that time. Emphasise any key accomplishments that are going to stand out on a page. After all, this is what employers will be looking for.
Don't Forget About Networking
Today, more and more tech jobs are being filled without being advertised at all, so be aware that conventional methods might not cut it when it comes to your job search. This is why making connections with people and building your network is more important than ever. Whether it’s through social media, local industry events or meetings, making connections can help open doors to future opportunities.
Even if a new job isn’t currently on your radar, it’s a good idea to continually build your network; it’ll help to strengthen relationships and raise your profile in the industry! With that in mind, ask for introductions, keep in touch with old colleagues and reach out to specialist recruitment agencies and other contacts.
Check in With Referees
How does your referee list look? Especially if you haven’t been in the market for a while, it’s the perfect time to reconnect and update them on your employment situation. Make sure they’re still relevant to the roles that you’re applying for and ask yourself whether there is anyone that could be added who might add more recent value.
Although references are unlikely to be checked until later in the recruitment process, it’s good practice to get in touch with any potential referees early. This not only gives them a heads up, but the more prepared they are, the better the reference will be. No one likes to be called up out of the blue! If you check in with them early, you can also gauge their feedback on strengths and areas for improvement, which might help during your job search.
Before making yourself available and starting a job search, make sure you’re well prepared. Taking the time to follow the four steps outlined above and bringing everything into shape will be sure to give you the best start possible and help set you up for success in your job search.
For further advice to help you prepare for your job search, or if you’re in the market for a new IT role, get in touch with us here.