Job Hunting

Employers Worried About Critical-Thinking Skills

Posted In Looking in Tech
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How does an employer measure critical-thinking skills? That’s a pressing question, considering that every company on the planet needs employees who can analyze information in a way that’s ultimately good for the bottom line. But how do you tell which employees have the right aptitude? According to The Wall Street Journal, employers have wildly different methods of evaluating their employees for critical-thinking skills. Goldman Sachs, for example, asks job candidates to “assess company valuations and stock pitches and then to… continue…

Daily Tip: Fresh Eyes on Cover Letters, Resumes

Posted In Looking in Tech
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In the early 1960s, NASA scientists reportedly omitted a hyphen from a guidance program uploaded to the Mariner 1 spacecraft, causing the latter to veer off course immediately after launch. Rather than allow the spacecraft to crash-land and possibly kill someone, NASA opted to remotely detonate the craft, arguably making that missing hyphen the most expensive typo in history. Leaving a few typos in your resume and cover letter probably won’t set the U.S. space program back a few years,… continue…

Interview Qs for Python Newcomers

Posted In Looking in Tech
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Although Python’s popularity continues to soar, recent trainees and junior developers usually need more than a cursory understanding of the language to land their first job. “Managers are looking for people who have thought critically about their tools, instead of accepting them blindly just because they are in style,” said Mark Lutz, a Florida-based trainer and author of several books on Python. Click here to find Python-programming jobs. Answering the “how” questions is always important during an interview, Lutz explained,… continue…

Daily Tip: Keep Your Portfolio in Order

Posted In Looking in Tech
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Most tech pros spend so much time perfecting their resumes and cover letters, it’s easy to forget another vital element in applying for a programming or developer job: an immaculate portfolio of past projects. Every software developer, engineer, and product lead should keep such a portfolio, preferably accessible via a personal website. Even if you don’t have a website, you can offer links to SourceForge, GitHub, or wherever else you keep your projects. Just as you’d take care with every… continue…

Daily Tip: Handling Technical Interview Questions

Posted In Looking in Tech
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If you’re applying for a highly technical role, you can expect a job interview filled with highly technical questions. Depending on the company, the interviewer might ask you to whiteboard a problem, or solve some fun-sounding but devilishly hard puzzles, take some sort of online test, or tackle a question verbally. However the interviewer frames the questions, these tips will help you solve them as quickly—and correctly—as possible. Take the Obvious Route: Some technical questions demand an elegant solution, but… continue…

5 Ways to Finesse Illegal Interview Questions

Posted In Looking in Tech
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There’s one key way an interviewer can trip you up, even if you’ve sailed through a whiteboard test and get along famously with everyone in the room: You may be asked a very personal, unexpected and inappropriate question, one that can knock you completely off course. While inquiring about your marital status, children, or religious background may seem illegal, most of the time it’s not: The legal line gets crossed if an employer refuses to hire you because of the… continue…

Daily Tip: Emphasize Your Expertise

Posted In Looking in Tech
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It’s tempting to cram your resume with as many skills as humanly possible, even if your grasp of those skills is tenuous at best. Recruiters and HR staff will tell you stories about all the candidates who included knowledge of particular platforms under the “Skills” portion of their respective resumes, even though the aforementioned candidates hadn’t interacted with that platform in any way, shape, or form for years. Those stories rarely end well: If a job interviewer drills down into… continue…

How to Ace Your Technical Interview

Posted In Looking in Tech
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Success at any job interview is based on putting your best foot forward. But that gets that much more difficult when you have to prove your skill set on top of charming everyone in the room. So what’s the secret to success in a technical interview? Get the Game Plan “The most critical thing a candidate can do to prepare for a technical interview is to ask the person organizing the interview what the game plan is,” said Janine Davis,… continue…

Daily Tip: No Rambling Cover Letters

Posted In Looking in Tech
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The best cover letters get right to the point. Recruiters and company HR staff have only so many hours in the day, and they appreciate when a letter outlines the applicant’s qualifications and background as succinctly as possible. In addition to brevity, winning cover letters contain a few additional elements. Recruiters and HR have a keen eye for when a cover letter is boilerplate, often because the skills it describes don’t fully align with the position on offer; the best… continue…

Daily Tip: Networking for Folks Who Hate Networking

Posted In Looking in Tech
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Everybody always says that the best way to build out your professional connections is to network as much as humanly possible. But many shy people would rather walk over a hundred yards of broken glass than strike up conversation after conversation with strangers. Fortunately, a few simple tips can make networking a little easier for introverts and others who hate to schmooze: Smile: When you smile, you attract people to you. A smile suggests confidence. There’s even some scientific research… continue…