Today’s job searching is not what it used to be. If you’re mid-career and looking to move up the ladder into a more senior tech job, you may find that your job hunting has not gone as planned.
Tech industry jobs are highly skilled. In certain regions such as London, New York and Silicon Valley, where there are thriving startup ecosystems, tech jobs are also highly competitive. Finding a way to grow your technology career and move into a senior role can be difficult. Here are some tips that will benefit you if you’re looking to move along in your desired tech career path.
Examples of Senior Tech Jobs
When you start searching for a new job, the first step you need to take is understanding what career progression you are looking for. There are a variety of senior management roles in the technology industry, so before you start your job hunt, think about what best suits your skills and most aligns with your desired career. Some examples of common senior tech and IT positions are:
- Chief Information Officer
- Chief Technology Officer
- Director of Technology
- Director of IT
- IT Manager
- Management Information Systems Director
- Technical Operations Officer
- Chief Engineer
- Director of Security
- Director of Quality Assurance
- Product (Project) Owner
- SCRUM Master
The Traditional Recruitment Method is No Longer the Best Option to Find Tech Industry Jobs
Recruitment has changed a lot over the past five to ten years, particularly in innovative industries like tech. New platforms are overtaking job boards and recruitment agencies to create a fairer and balanced hiring process.
Recruitment has become largely candidate-driven as tech companies search for the top talent. According to REC, a bad hire at the mid-manager level, that has a salary of £42,000 can cost a company around £132,000. These costs make hiring the right employee vital for a company’s bottom line.
These days tech companies want to ensure they get the right fit for their senior roles. As such, they are using new platforms that create impartial judgements on candidates. Having your job application and CV submitted anonymously takes out the bias you might receive due to gender or age (two common problems in the current tech industry).
By joining recruitment platforms such as PitchMe you are evaluated only on your skills, creating the best match between you and potential employers. Platforms like this create an effective and quick way for you to find new senior tech roles based on what really important and can stop you from losing out on applications due to small or irrelevant details.
Building a Great Portfolio
When applying for any senior position, your potential employer is looking for you to demonstrate a proven track record and the best way to do this is through your portfolio.
If you are a UX Designer, you are probably aware of platforms such as Behance and Dribble. These platforms can be one of the best ways to demonstrate your skills and creativity. As a senior or mid-level UX designer, you need to do all you can to stand out if you want to level up your career.
How to create a stand out UX design portfolio:
- Remember your portfolio is to be used as evidence of your skills and does not need to be presented as an art project.
- Think about who you are as a designer. It can often be better to present yourself as a specialist rather than a jack of all trades. Add pieces to your portfolio that demonstrate the kind of work you would like to keep doing or do more of.
- Present your work in a way that shows what each project achieved beyond deliverables.
- Think beyond design and demonstrate skills such as business analysis, team management, and industry involvement.
Developers & IT
It is not only designers who need to demonstrate their skills through portfolios. Developers and IT professionals can create profiles on GitHub and Stack Overflow to show their track record to employers.
Think about the type of role you are seeking and build a collection of projects that are relevant to the type of work you would be undertaking in that role. Demonstrate your most impressive achievements and focus on your best skills.
Rather than creating a laundry list of skills and languages you have, referred to your strongest skills and give them context through real-world delivery. Adding too much, or skills that are not your biggest strengths can make your portfolio seem unreliable and stop you from standing out to employers.
Interviewing For Senior Tech Roles
Finding the right senior tech job for your skills is the first hurdle. After you have connected with your potential employer, the next stage is to go for an interview.
Technology is a field where many people are technically competent but managerially inept. Your interview is the chance to show that you are capable of taking on a senior role and have managerial and leadership skills. Show the hiring manager that you have the personality traits needed to work at a startup and the skills essential to help their business excel.
Take the time to research and understand the company you are interviewing for. Show how your values align with theirs and demonstrate why you want this specific role.
Tech roles often involve task tests through the hiring process to give you the chance to prove the skills you have listed on your CV and in your portfolio. Do some research into the company you are applying to and try to establish what their recruitment process is. Glassdoor and Google searches can give you the opportunity to review other candidates hiring process. You will then go through any tests and interviews with an insight of what to expect, reducing your stress and allowing you to make any necessary preparations.
Landing a senior tech role is no easy task. If you have not been having much luck, don’t be disheartened. Take a look at your application process, where you are applying, the methods you are using, and your interview abilities. Asses where you have room for improvement and look into new avenues for your job search such as new anonymous recruitment platforms.