How can a Junior IT professional find a job today? Tips from the IT Recruitment Agency Lucky Hunter

Current world events also affect the IT market: for example, competition between candidates for some positions is increasing (mainly it concerns job openings with relocation). There are also cases of firing the entire departments of software developers in unstable regions by large companies, as a result of which the number of IT talents who are actively looking for work is greatly increasing.

In some moments, even experienced professionals need more time and effort to get an offer, and even more so juniors. We tell you how to form an effective job search strategy for junior IT talents today and what to pay attention to.

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Decide on the resources to find a job

Do not limit yourself to just one resource: for example, if you are looking for a job in Eastern Europe, use thematic channels in Telegram messenger — job openings are often published there with a recruiter's contact for a direct response. By the way, job openings of international companies can also be found, so do not underestimate the power of Telegram :) Moreover, some channels put vacancies for junior talents in a separate category, which further makes the search process much easier.

LinkedIn remains a timeless classic: regularly maintain your page, do not forget to update the status on “open to work”, which will help recruiters to understand that you are ready to consider offers. Do not forget to describe the key hard skills, attach a portfolio, if any, add information about completed courses and the certificates — this can add points to you in the eyes of a potential employer.

If you have little work experience or internship, also be sure to indicate this in your profile, not forgetting to write what tasks you have solved.

Various job boards (for example, Indeed among English-language resources) is what you can and should also use when searching.

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Try quantitative approach

Sometimes even experienced candidates can get upset after being rejected, and junior professionals often experience such refusals much harder. How to deal with it? Set yourself up that finding a job now, especially the first one, is a long process, so do not scold yourself if you do not receive a bunch of invitations to interviews the next day after you start an active search.

Send responses to as many job openings as possible: the rule “10 resumes sent and one invitation to an interview is got” can also work in the case of juniors. It is not worth spending a lot of time on compiling the perfect cover letter exactly for each company: make yourself a template that can be slightly adjusted in specific cases.

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Create a portfolio and do pet projects

Even if you don't have a “real” work experience yet, but your specialization involves having a portfolio (for example, a UX designer or a game designer), create one. Surely during the course of your studies you did some projects or prepared course work. Sometimes interesting cases and a competent portfolio can be one of the decisive factors for an employer to continue a dialogue with a specialist.

In addition, you can include pet projects in the portfolio, if you have such. For example, do you make your own game together with a friend? Great, be sure to mention it at the interview and add at least a general description to the portfolio, even if the project is still in the process of being created.

By the way, do not neglect pet projects: they perfectly help to gain experience and “fill your hand”, especially junior talents.

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Develop networking

Networking can help solve if not everything, then a lot. Surely you have often seen posts on LinkedIn from your feed, in which someone reports a job search and asks subscribers to repost. So “along the chain” information can get to a recruiter or a hiring manager who is just looking for an employee of your experience and profile for an open position.

In addition, with developed networking, the chance of finding a job through acquaintances increases significantly (which is especially valuable in the case of juniors) — in many large companies, there are special referral programs for employees who bring new hires, so the situation is win-win for all parties.

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Use mentoring

Mentoring is currently developing in IT rapidly: moreover, you can find a mentor both on a paid and free basis. Of course, this may be more difficult, since there are objectively fewer such offers, but, nevertheless, some experienced specialists write that in the current situation they want to help in any way they can and offer mentoring for a symbolic payment or even without it.

Junior specialists often have a lot of questions, and the chance to learn from a more experienced professional helps to join and develop as a professional faster. How to find a mentor? This can often be done in thematic chats or channels, on LinkedIn, through acquaintances or within an IT community on various resources — for example, a community of IT professionals is actively growing on Twitter, who form lists of mentors ready to work in Notion (or any other resource with shared access) and share them.

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Pay attention to the soft skills

This is especially true when you are looking for a job abroad in international companies: such employers sometimes pay more attention to soft skills than companies in Eastern Europe. So, even if you have minimal experience, but you know how to present yourself competently and prove yourself as a proactive, able to work in a team, creative, flexible and quickly adapting employee, this can play in your favor.

It is especially good if you can confirm each soft skill with facts. It is not necessary to have work experience for this: for example, you can illustrate leadership qualities with examples from your courses where you led a group project.

We hope that our advice helped to orient how to build a strategy for finding a job for junior IT talents. The main thing is, do not give up, do not stop trying and believe that everything will definitely work out!
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