Can't Find a Job. Advice?

I'm in the process finishing a computer science degree, and have been actively looking for my first job as a junior software developer, but have not even been able to get a single interview. Lately I have become quite disheartened about my future prospects in the field. At this stage, I would even be willing to take an unpaid internship as I need some experience.

My grades are very strong, I have put a lot of work into my portfolio and am involved in various IT meetups and hackathons, I am a female so am worried that it may be the reason why I'm finding it so difficult (perception that women can't code is still common unfortunately). I do have a males name though, so may not be the actual reason, not sure.

What do you think I should do to increase my chances of finding work? Masters degree? Bootcamp?

Comments

              •  

                @Sarah11: Been there, done that (on my case I regret those 4 years of my life going away). A phd is an incredible amount of work. I would not do that part time on top of a full time job.

                Also keep in mind that if you do go into research it's very competitive to get grants and you really want to be part of a large high performing research group.

          •  

            @Sarah11: Absolutely agree with techlead - it does not take 20 years to become a lead, I'm a senior at the moment after 3 years.
            As for experience whilst at university just try and apply to any kind of positions over summer/part time. I was very very lucky and managed to actually snag an internship first year summer of my degrees through the sponsors of a scholarship I received and it snowballed to have a summer position over a few companies every year from then on which turned into part time for the final part of my degrees. Tutoring for your university can also reflect well.

            If any company is willing to take the overhead of hiring you as an intern it will make people assess you more favourably when looking at taking you as a graduate - my company usually only takes people as graduates who have interned with them before; I only know of a few exceptions like myself.

        •  

          Where did you learn to code?

          Also what age is too old to move into IT/programming?

          •  

            @ddn2004: Google is the best, but it can be a little unstructured. I learnt coding because I have an interest in it, I want to know how technology and applications work. If you want something more structured, then check out Udemy, Coursera and other online courses, they all have intro to coding which will give you more context.

            Age is just a number, it all depends on your mindset and your interest. If you are interested, you can succeed and move into the field at any age.

          •  

            @ddn2004: I'm older. Around 30s. I've worked for several years, now trying to move into IT. I've only been coding a couple of years but I'm pretty determined.

  • +1 vote

    If you can stomach the idea, try the public service in Canberra. Seeing some of the crap programmers that they have brought in from overseas, I am sure you would be in with a good chance. Your gender is totally irrelevant.

  •  

    What city/region in Australia are you situated?

    •  

      Melbourne

      • +2 votes

        I work for an international tech company, HQ in Sydney, but also has an office in Melbourne, I was recruited by them before finishing uni, so lack of experience shouldn’t be too much of a problem,

        Feel free to send me an inbox message if you want more info

        • -4 votes

          Lies

  •  

    What sort of companies have you been targeting? Providing you have strong programming skills and computer science fundamentals to pass the technical interview, places like Google and Atlassian hire very diverse.

    Larger tech companies are all for equality and bringing women into IT.

    If you don't have the necessary technical skills atm, try brushing up on your coding skils (using leetcode) or your system design understanding (grokking the system design). With a few months of study preparing for interviews you will be ready for any technical question they throw at you.

    • -1 vote

      I have heard bad things about Atlassian. I would like to work at a big company though (Xero, IBM, microsoft…). Being diverse is not important to me (I think companies just say they are diverse to help their bottom line. It is always pretty hollow commitment I think).
      I work very hard on my technical skills, will continue doing that.

      •  

        I think companies just say they are diverse to help their bottom line. It is always pretty hollow I think

        For some companies this is true. But for most it is completely the opposite They are very progressive (openly as well). I worked for a large cloud provider and their inclusiveness and support of minority groups was definitely not smoke and mirrors.

        Also, you shouldn't also limit yourself to dev roles, have a consideration for consultancy, systems reliability engineering, DevOps etc. Some these paths untilise software development skills

    • +1 vote

      Judging by their products, I'd be surprised if Atlassian hired anyone but graduates :P

  • +2 votes

    Have you tried the Government internships? You may have to accept something other than your field of interest (eg:IT help desk) . Then work your way through to get where you wanna be.

    In my humble opinion, there is no value of doing a masters if you are not applying your newly learnt skills in a real work place. Get in to the workforce first and then do further studies to improve yourself.

  • +1 vote

    I sucked when I was trying to apply for grad jobs. Although to be fair I applied for "only" a couple dozen as well compared to others who applied for many more. In the end I only got the one offer, but luckily that has worked out ok for me over my working life (still there…).

    Reading just the OP you seem to have missed mentioning anything about personality and marketing. It sucks, but unless you are going for something like law or med where there are specific credentials, I've found IT is just a big self marketing exercise.

    Are you on LinkedIn? I'm not (lol) but I've seen friends do ok on that, where at the very least if you are strong on skills, people can at least see that in text.

    • -1 vote

      It sucks, but unless you are going for something like law or med where there are specific credentials,

      Would you recommend I seek out specific credentials after I graduate. I was considering getting some certificates.

      •  

        I would not recommend this - if you already have experience it can be a nice box ticking cherry on top but by itself it is seen as a pretty hollow achievement. Assuming you are referring to things like AWS certs etc.

  •  

    I'll tell you that back then i was a desperate international student graduate who didn't even have permanent resident.

    Got rejected from many interviews, had different people review my CV and also created different versions. Most of the times not eveb an interview.

    In the end, i got my job after scrolling my phone contacts and called, asked people to meet up and it was a uni mate who got me my first job.

    My career was eventually started after that.

  •  

    Your set skills should be in demand…. employers should be contacting you.

    What has gone wrong ?

    Have you been sold the old Uni story that you will have a successful and financially secure life… when in reality, you are now indebted to Hecs fees, and soon to find the career is not really what you thought it would be. By that time you have a mortgage , car, kids, and shackled to the new tier of paid slavery.

  • +2 votes

    Getting the first job in IT is always difficult. I was in the same position as you when i graduated in 2003. I didn't get a single interview.i end up working for a company without pay and after 3 to 4 months i managed to secure my 1st job.

    Some tips for you.

    1. Try to see if you can get any volunteer work. If you get a free work job work for about 3 months and prepare your resume as working and apply for jobs.

    2. Try to apply for job no body wants to do. Even if it is a 24/7 helpdesk/call center job in IT go for it. Once you in you can progress through.

    3. Review resume, comms skills etc.

    4. If you have skills that is demand it will help you.

    5. Experience is everything. Once you have enough experience agents will come after you to offer job.

  • +1 vote

    If you are an Australian Citizen the Defence Industry is having trouble finding enough programmers. The big discriminator is a Security Clearance which you can only get if you are an Australian Citizen.

  • +1 vote

    I was in your shoes when I first started out, except I had the worst grades and took a lot longer to graduate from my degrees thanks to WoW… Ahem. I just went to work for small companies, and that's when the real education started. Boy was I in for a treat. I didn't understand sexism or sexual harassment until then, but the experience is worthwhile lol now I have the funny stories to tell. You might want to start by dropping all your expectations and apply to small companies.

    Things might be useful to check out (although I got the feeling you might already have): Rails run women's events once in a while, there's a lot of people there who can help you to get started. There's a Women Hack thing going just last week, I can forward you the email if you want. LinkedIn is great because it allows you to bypass your androgynous name (I believe recruiters are able to search by gender). What I found to be the most useful skill though, is the ability to communicate. I found most men lacking in communication (can't for the life of me, figure out why they think texting is a good idea). It's relevant because it direct affects your ability to actually connect with people at those networking events. Then again, it took me a while to figure out, YMMV.

    Figure out what makes you you. Last manager who tried to rehire me, said I knew what the business wanted before they did; another one more on the technical side said I was 'dynamic' (ie (profanity) the process and the framework when we had to, refactor later). I don't know what your thing might be, but figure it out and play to your strengths. A good team player always helps out, a great one however, only offers their strengths.

    The general consensus about sexism, is to get the job, then change it from within. I'm sure you read Sandberg's book :)

    And one last thing, don't take it all too seriously. Life is not a race, go at your own pace. People will tell you all the worst things that can happen, ultimately, you get to decide whether that should be part of your reality. Murphy could be a saint, or just another religion. You are in charge.

    •  

      Things might be useful to check out (although I got the feeling you might already have): Rails run women's events once in a while, there's a lot of people there who can help you to get started. There's a Women Hack thing going just last week,

      Is there a women's ruby group? I just go to the regular ruby group (and regular hackathons). I tend to avoid women's events as I just want to be treated like others. Though Google are having a women's night next week, so I will go to that. Otherwise I pretty much try and be one of the guys.

      And one last thing, don't take it all too seriously. Life is not a race, go at your own pace.

      Great advice.

      •  

        I've been to http://railsgirls.com when they came to Melbourne at one stage. I learned something I wouldn't have otherwise there: Polygamy is real and normal; Rails people are quite comfortable talking about it. Breastfeeding is complicated.

        Google Girls I've been to once, the least interesting of them all. Maybe it's different now.

        Be true to who you are. If a part of who you are coincides with 'being one of the guys', it'll work, otherwise it might not worth it. You can't make everyone happy, because everyone is so self-absorbed in their own misery. But being yourself might kick them out of it momentarily. So when I go 'I put on my rob and wizard hat…' there's a higher probability of entertaining on Whirlpool compared to a business team chat…

  • +2 votes

    I have been in your shoes, and I know how disheartening it can be to go through so many rejections. PM me and I will happily go over your CV if you would like :)

    Best of luck!!
    —Tim

    • -1 vote

      You've been a woman?

      • -1 vote

        Only on Friday nights!

  •  

    Where are you from? Had a mate getting a full time job offering 86k a year in his second year and multiple offers since. Him and another mate says they hire anyone since they're short on programmers and pays ridiculous salaries.

    •  

      I'm in melbourne, but can move. He must have has some very rare skills to get an offer that good.

      • +1 vote

        He's in Melbourne too. He did an internship with Accenture and I'm not sure about any 'rare skills'

        • +2 votes

          That's hilarious, my friend works there too. He said that is a terrible place to work and people are quitting all the time. They can't keep people apparently.

          •  

            @Sarah11: Yeah he's now at a different company, it seems really relaxed since he can work from home and go in when he wants.

            What University did you go to? Maybe you can go back to careers and they can help you skills or finding a job.

            •  

              @bkhm: Melbourne. I'm still in uni

          •  

            @Sarah11: If you're really struggling to get a foot in the door, even a horrible company can still be considered "experience".

            It's all a matter of perspective, really. At any rate, it will give you a sneak peek at politics in the workplace.

            That said, what field you choose to specialize in also plays a factor. Software Architecture and Data Science Positions always have openings, but a lot of the time, they will go for more senior candidates (e.g. at least 5 years experience). Dev Ops and Programmer jobs will involve a bit more competition, but are open even to graduates. Try to get in the mix.

  • +1 vote

    Go for a short-term contracts doing anything you can even remotely related to your career. Applying for 20 jobs is honestly not much. It's a numbers game. You have to apply for anything remotely suitable. Just get your foot in the door, then work hard to build a reputation for yourself.

    I would recommend getting an AWS certification. They seem to be in huge demand at the moment as every IT department rushes to the cloud.

    Recruiters are routinely faced with hundreds of CV's, they often throw 80% out immediately. So you have to write a customised cover letter for each role. It's also good to follow up with a phone call/meeting to imprint yourself on the recruiter. If they mention any "Selection Criteria" in the job ad/description they expect you to write a response (at least a paragraph) to address each of them, using the STAR technique.

    I have a science degree, but my first job out of Uni (2016) was a "3 month contract" lifting 120kg stormwater drain lids and measuring the pits/pipes (through syringes/dead animals and car number plates, so many number plates!). We were mapping the pipe network, but in reality it was dirty/dangerous and poorly paid (less then woolies/coles). I stuck it out for 12 months and continued applying/interviewing for better jobs (hundreds). It is definitely easier to get an interview/job when you've already got a job.

    Finally I cracked an entry-level help-desk role in government ($50k). From there I've climbed the ladder ($90k).

    Good luck with your search. I hope some of this advice helps.

  • +1 vote

    What a weird world: people having hard time finding a job; companies having hard time finding good employees

    • +3 votes

      The problem is matching the right employees to the right jobs. Everyone wants an employee with lots of experience, the ability to work well with others, who delivers everything they want done and they can pay a pittance. The employee wants as much money as possible, great colleagues, interesting and prestigious work, etc. These are, absolutely, stereotypes but the hiring process can be fraught, for both sides. An employee who is “difficult” can be hard to get rid of and the employee may have turned down “better jobs” to take on a job where what was promised is not delivered. In, my experience, the best fit is often referrals from existing employees. The company can “tut” at the current employee if they get a dog and the new employee should’ve heard all the whinging about the company before they join, so they know what they are getting into.

    • +1 vote

      Half the problem is recruiters. Artificially inflating wage expectations in the hope of higher commission.

      We're often offered junior candidates who are expecting more than senior packages, just because the recruiter has promised to find them $x.00.

      I'd also suggest Sarah11 to avoid using a recruiter and go direct to organisations where possible. You are a much better prospect as a junior resource if the company doesn't have to front-up 10-20% of your wage to a recruiter for next to no value (many recruiters are just glorified Googler's/CV forwarders afterall).

  • +6 votes

    Hey ,

    One thing I can tell, where I work , the HR use AI system to shift through applicants . They usually got approx 300-400 applicants for one job. The AI job is to shift through those resume by using match key words , any misspelling, irrelevant jargon , and rate it from 1-100%. And only forward 30 resumes to HR for further checking.

  • +2 votes

    The best way would be asking some friends who’s already in this industry to forward your resume directly to the hiring manager.

    If needed I could ask around and see if there are any openings for you (from your words I can feel that you work pretty hard:))

  • +2 votes

    Graduate recruitment is just too too competitive.

    There are hundreds of applications for a single position. HR or managers sometimes just discard applications based on time received, channel they were provided, without even looking at all applications - there are just too many. You need a combination of luck, perseverance and resilience to failure to get through.

    This is even before you get in through the door!!!

    The best way to get in is to get into a company in any role, even admin and move sideways internally through networks. Maybe it's about going to meet someone in the company who is an influencer to ask them questions.

    Get any job, get any experience then you might find doors opening.

  • +2 votes

    If you know anything about cyber security, you could try Cyberspace Warfare Officer in the Air Force. Lots of benefits and good pay.

    •  

      Even if you don't the military can train you.

    •  

      Con: you have to undertake an 18 months military training at the RAAF base in Sale.

      •  

        Not if you go in as graduate.

  • +1 vote

    I couldn't find a job when I graduated from an IT degree for the subsequent 6 month period.

    I ended up applying for an administration role through a recruiter for a University whom I leveraged my IT knowledge and developed a database due to their unknowing needs at the time.

    This gave me demonstrable experience for employment in an IT role which I've continued since.

    If you can't get the role you need, find something that'll at least provide opportunity to segue into the industry and not rely on your perceived value.

  •  

    Hello, I hope you find a job soon (assuming you are an Australian citizen).

    In addition to what other commenters have said, hires are very heavily baised toward people who are able to sell well. In a graduate I'd look for a positive attitude toward learning, quick wit, out of degree learnings such as home programming and passion projects alongside grades and so forth. Technical competency and your ability to demonstrate this is more important if you are applying for a purely tech role.

    It's very hard to assess someone in an hour so presentation is extremely important.

    Diversity hires are real particularly in large corporates, you should put a photo on your linkedin.

  • +1 vote

    There are definitely demands for good talent on IT industry. And while there are bias of gender in the industry. Most of the bigger companies in Australia are not gender bias and in fact they prefer hiring female to promote diversity.

    People in the industry is aware of the diversity issue and are working hard to fix this.

    The fact that you don't receive any interviews means that your CV or portfolio have rooms for improvement.

    Like others have suggested, seek help from people in the industry to review your CV and portfolio. People in the industry are more than happy to help (including myself).

    Here are some of my tips:
    * do you have a portfolio website?
    * have a blog to showcase CS problems you've encountered.
    * customise and tailor how you market yourself or CV when applying for a job. Is it a front end job? Back end? Full stack? Dev ops? System engineer? Think about why your skill set can add value to the role and provide a concrete examples.

    Good luck in your job search! And don't give up!

  • -1 vote

    Relax honey, you're a recent grad. Plenty in same boat as you

    •  

      Thanks. I actually haven't graduated yet. Still a year to go.

      • +2 votes

        If you still have a year to go then by all means start applying for graduate programs. But realise it might not be the right time to look for jobs. Employers who need staff generally need them now. Best case may be to start looking at where you want to work and look for volunteer/part time work depending on your class schedule.

      •  

        Why are you applying for a job when you still have a year left before graduation? I think this is the main reason no company is interviewing you. Aside from big corporations (Google, Amazon), no company hires that far ahead

        • +1 vote

          Not necessarily true. Engineering companies hire plenty interns still in Uni on a part-time basis and then offer some of them permanent roles on graduation or sponsor post-grad degrees with a 2 year lock-in agreement.

        •  

          This is absolutely not true - almost all large graduate programs hire at exactly this time and not any closer to the date.

          • +1 vote

            @sakurashu: What I meant is for junior software engineer roles in companies which don't have graduate programs, they normally want you to start ASAP. Have you only applied for large graduate programs so far?

            •  

              @dhnqt: Mostly large graduate programs. I still have a year to go and I also work in an unrelated job. I have just applied to go a women i google event this month, so I hope this might help me improve my application for some of the larger companies. Thanks

  •  

    Keep trying and good luck

    •  

      Thanks

  • +1 vote

    I work for a large global corporate (80,000 employees) in IT. "Inclusion" is a big thing nowadays. We are hiring women over men even if the women are not as skilled as the men applying. Also hiring those from less fortunate countries to satisfy the Govt and society's wish that more people are included, rather than excluded.

    So don't think being a women will negatively impact your job prospects. And don't worry about your name, it's just a name, it will have no impact.

    Just keep plugging away, you'll find something. Also have a Professor at Uni or other experienced professional or mentor review your CV and take a look at the content of any emails you may be writing when applying for jobs, they may be able to give some tips and improvement.

    Good luck with the job hunting.

  • +3 votes

    You say you have a males name but you think you can't get an interview because of discrimination against womens… I hope your logic is better when you code!
    Btw affirmative action's purpose is to enforce hiring minorities that wouldn't be hired because of stereotypes. Of course some people will say you've only be hired because of it because that's exactly the point. You get a job thanks to it and can gain experience and prove your worth, then get a better job with that experience. It's like getting benefits when you're disabled, there's no shame in it.

    I did not go to uni in Australia, but where I'm from we don't like to hire out of uni students because they lack applicable skills. Showcase your real life experience before anything else.
    Also, a master's degree is useful but a phd is counter-productive in IT (because you're too academic) unless you want to work in an advance field (like data science or AI)

    When I move to Oz, I applied to dozens of jobs with no success. Recruiting agencies wouldn't push my CV because of my restrictive visa. What worked was to search for "talent" recruiters on linkedin and connect with them explaining my situation. You can even connect with other working programmers, they know if their company is hiring and might even get a referral commission for pushing your CV.

    • +1 vote

      I would not do a masters degree without any work experience first, thats just wasting money…well unless you are trying to switch fields.

  • +1 vote

    grades VS real world people skills, learn the difference, its probably why your being rejected at every interview.

    •  

      I think if I could get an interview I could show them that.

      • +2 votes

        do not include in your resume, these can be used to judge you:

        . address/suburb
        . date of birth - however this can roughly be guessed based on when you started your education etc
        . jobs that are useless to your current application
        . too little information
        . too much information

        definitely find a paid service which goes over your resume + interview skills

        First grad job out of uni is always the hardest, after that, piece of cake.

  • +2 votes

    If you have a female middle name - put it in the CV.

    •  

      How’s that going to help, wouldn’t it confuse the interviewer calling her the wrong name first name

      • +2 votes

        She's mentioned that her first name is typically male, so she's probably mistaken for a guy by recruiters. Putting a middle name in her CV might confirm she's a she. We know recruiters are looking for women to fill quotas in IT lol

  • +3 votes

    Hi Sarah,

    Can you activate your private messaging and give me a PM? My company is looking to hire junior developers/graduates and you sound like you may fit the role. Obviously there are no guarantees but it doesn't hurt for you to apply and see where it takes you.

  •  

    Have you joined https://twitter.com/girlgeekacademy for networking ? Many progressive companies are looking for women in IT.

    •  

      I just signed up for their hackerthon. Thanks for that.

  •  

    What are you putting as your starting salary when asked? I got declined from so many positions as a PhD grad without interview and I suspect it was because my expected salary was too high.

    •  

      I'm not listing a salary, but I think anything less than 45k is a bit low.

  • +1 vote

    I'm in the process finishing a computer science degree

    How close are you to completing your degree? I would say most employers are looking to hire now. If you haven't yet completed your degree then you wouldn't be a strong candidate for consideration.

    That aside, if you're not getting the interviews then something is not right with your applications or CV.

    •  

      Got a year to go.

      •  

        A) did you apply for the atlassaian grad program?
        B) pm me your cv, I'll tell you if Antigone stands out as a red flag.

  •  

    Eh I personally don't think you being a woman is an issue considering how PC everything is nowadays. Not to mention "Women in IT" is pushed a lot in the IT Space as marketing tactics.

  •  

    Applicant "i would like to apply for this job"

    Employer "You do not have enough experience"

    Applicant "How do i get experience if no one give me a chance?"

  • +2 votes

    I work in the adjacent field of data analytics. It is extremely tough to get your first job with a CS degree especially if you didn't do any internships during your penultimate year. Most generic ass companies would honestly rather an IT grad with more practical skills than a CS grad who knows the basis behind computation. Its silly but thats the way the cookie crumbles.

    I struggled as well despite good grades and just because I had to put food on the table, I took a call centre job in a large company.

    Within 3 months I had written simple python scripts to automate the hell out of some of their more laborious tasks, networked and pestered the hell out of their IT dept, got my name in their view and applied for jobs in house.

    If you've got time, try to get some internship work done OR apply for adjacent positions then work towards your eventual goal. I am moving from general data analytics to a much more niche sector now but the same principle applies.

    Hope you find something.

    •  

      Is data analytics more quantitative than cs. I've heard conflicting things about the level of maths required (I would rather more maths in my day).

      •  

        Depends on your program.

        I know people that are doing data analytics masters programs that are honestly just watered down IT and some business stats thrown in. I mean they do calculus in one semester.

        Then again I know CS programs that are just IT and some generic AI courses thrown in.

        If you want more maths, find either a solid CS program OR do a bachelor of science majoring in mathematics and minoring in stats or CS.

  • +2 votes

    It's just numbers games. There are hundreds of applicants with no job experience. People like you. You need to somehow make your resume stand out.

  •  

    Get your CV reviewed by anyone you can. You don't need to take all their advice but it can be useful. I went through a crazy amount of revisions before I was 'done' with mine. As others have said, customise it for each application, at least a little bit. Same thing with cover letter.

    I think volunteer work helped me too, gave me plenty of stories to talk about in interviews.

  •  

    I am a female so am worried that it may be the reason why I'm finding it so difficult (perception that women can't code is still common unfortunately)

    As a lecturer back then, Some of my best students have been women and some took on internships on their final semester that eventually became their full time job. How good can you code? Any sample projects to show to the company beforehand?

    •  

      I'm ok, but I am working to be a lot better. I have a small collection of projects.

      •  

        A github account loaded with the projects will go a long way. Showing active development during your free time shows dedication as well. This is more useful when one is starting out imo.

  • +3 votes

    Software Engineer here - we have hired a few (near) graduates via hatch.team - sign up and give it a go. It has lead to one full time junior position out of 3 candidates so far.

    Just a strong reminder that a lot of the software industry is now focused around culture. Once you're at a certain level of competency, we know we can teach you the technology, but we NEED you to fit in with the culture and team. Be open to your mistakes, be friendly and kind to all, take and give jokes easily. This will win you a place at most places you would want to work.

  • +1 vote

    Your name / gender won’t be an issue landing on a job in It field. If you’re too concerned and have other legal names, use one of those instead of it to see if anything results differently.
    It’s just a too competitive field at the moment and will be hard to get in. Doesn’t mean you’re bad.

    Here are some tips.
    Try to skill up on some other different technologies that can be helpful. As a fresh grad having too much opinionated views can almost always ruin it and be open to learn as much different tech as possible.

    Make your cv and cover letters to the point. Too much garbage won’t help anyone. If they want to know, they will ask during the interview.

    Try to apply directly rather than single click application process from seek / glassdoor / linkedin.

    Build up your linkedin portfolio and be in touch with recruiters regularly.

    If your experience is based on applying during nov/dec/jan it’s almost always a dull period as not many jobs and holidays period. So recruitment is very slow or not responsive.

    Good luck.

  •  

    Alot of employers are looking at what you are doing between finishing study and the interview process. Sounds like you are very active in some events but you could look at doing some airtasker programming jobs to get a freelance profile building or contribute on stack exchange.

    Good luck

  • +1 vote

    Don't expect to get your dream position straight off the bat.

    I personally did some time in an Australian call centre where I would remote into customer PC clean and install virus protection software.

    The important thing is to get your foot into the door and call centres have a high turn over rate. I.e. they always looking for people and they don't expect you to stay.

  • +1 vote

    Unfortunately in this day and age, its who you know and not what you know…
    I'm obviously speaking from my own experience.
    It's a jungle out there.
    Such is life

  •  

    I would say that as long as you are applying for appropriately advertised positions (i.e. graduate level) then it would be your application/cover letter/CV that are the likely problem. As others have said there is a ton of competition for those positions so HR have to be brutal when culling the list of potential candidates. TBH I wouldn't rush out of do the masters of it's just to improve your chances of employment. It may be more of a hindrance without other industry experience.

    I've been working as a dev, admittedly in a fairly specialist field for nearly 20 years and have changed jobs a few times. I usually try to keep cover letters and my CV short and sweet. I often customise my CV for the position (after all I'm asking someone to trust me and make a significant investment whether it works out or not). I try to cover why I'm (genuinely) enthusiastic about the specific position and the most relevant experience, training or extra curricular/hobby work. Be prepared to show off what you have done when you do get to an interview.

    I'd say the other highly relevant industry wide change has been to the shift to frameworks like Agile, SAFe etc. You should be highlighting when you have been a team player in the past and your ability to clearly communicate and work well with others. It's vitally important.

    Finally as others have stated it's who you know. Cultivate industry contacts where possible. Keep attending the meet ups. There are events and groups for women in and aspiring to be in IT. Attend those where you can. I've heard good things from the women I work with.

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    Would you consider temporary positions (one year full time contract?) as a means to get experience and get your foot in the door, so to speak?

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      Of course.

  • +1 vote

    To beat the crowd you should emphasise the following over cheapo devs from other countries:
    Gender
    Citizenship status
    Local study history (including high school to show u grew up here)
    Local work experience
    Communication skills
    Experience in Australian workforce/laws/culture/environment/markets etc
    Marks earnt (if decent)
    Certifications
    Specific skill set

    Consider trying out for similar roles such as help desk or data analyst to get your foot in the door. Plenty of people have evolved from their first role. I got my first job out of uni by March the next year, doing support and testing. I only do testing now but actually my focus in uni was networking (got my CCNA). This never happened but it all worked out better anyway going from that 40k job in 2005 to what I do now. Just add a digit in front ;)

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    OP Not sure if anyone else has asked, but have you sought any feedback from your applications? You might need to be pushy to get some decent feedback, but you need to know what your shortcomings are to these people so you can work towards plugging those gaps on your resume.

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      Not really. I applied for the microsoft traineeship program, and got rejected. I asked for feedback, but didn't get a response.

  • +1 vote

    My advice is to look around at what business is using and what you want to focus on:

    For example, when I finished my Software Engineering degree, most of my studies focussed on Java/ORACLE; no luck finding work in that space, as soon as I changed to Microsoft stack (.net, SQL Server) there was stacks of work around.

    Computer science might lead you more towards things like Machine Learning, BI etc currently. But to get jobs in that space you need a lot of experience in business to stand out (it's not all tech to understand the problem and business case afterall). If that is where you are looking you may be better served with a more well established technology/language/platform to get a few years in industry first.

    My other advice would be to try to find a job in a consultancy initially (if you have any choice in the matter) rather than a pure dev company/team. The pace of learning if much higher (and more demanding generally) but it will definitely help to fast track your progression.