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IT Candidates, This is How You Can Strengthen Your Job Application

IT jobs are in high demand, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t hard to stand out. If you’re struggling to find worthwhile IT positions, use the advice in this article to strengthen your job application.

Makes a Personal Website and Portfolio

A personal website is a site that doesn’t represent a brand or a company but an individual. Usually, a job candidate will make a website to market their skills to employers via a portfolio.

What are the Benefits of Making a Personal Website?

Your resume will include necessary information about your experience, education, and skill, but it won’t include work you created for others. Even if you aren’t a freelancer, you’ll need a tech portfolio to provide work samples, links to social media profiles, testimonials, and a bio.

With a personal website, you can control your branding and point recruiters to your website via search engine optimization (SEO). You’ll also have something to refer to during your interviews, performance reviews, and salary negotiations, which may give you more leverage.

How Do I Make a Personal Website?

You don’t need coding skills to make a personal website. Website builders like Wix have plenty of personal website templates you can choose from to make your own site in minutes.

However, there are still steps you should take before setting your website to “live:”

  • Define Your Goals: What job would you like? What do you want from employers?
  • Choose a Design: Switch up your color scheme, fonts, logos, and layout.
  • Add Content: Include a homepage, bio, portfolio, videos, testimonials, and contact.
  • Make it Mobile Friendly: Mobile-compatible websites are great for SEO.

Although creating a website takes time, it’s a worthwhile investment in your career.

Include a List of IT Skills On Your Resume and Website

An IT skill is a developed ability to handle information technology tasks in an effective and efficient manner. You need to add IT skills to your resume and website to bypass ATS software.

What are the Benefits of Adding IT Skills to Your Resume/Website?

According to Jobscan, 99% of Fortune 500 companies use applicant tracking systems (ATS) software. If you don’t bypass the ATS, your application likely won’t be judged by human eyes. You’ll need to use keywords that relate to your specific IT skills if you want to get an interview.

Keywords are a fundamental and important part of SEO. If you don’t include keywords your potential employers may look up to find employees with your skillset, you won’t be considered for a position. You may miss out on great opportunities if you don’t use the right keywords.

How Do I Add the Right IT-Focused Keywords?

First, you need to look at the job description. You’ll find keywords you can use in your resume.

Some recruiters will set up their ATS software to find different versions of words, while others won’t, so it’s good practice to include a keyword more than once but in various forms.

ATS will check for things like file format (use MS Word), font (use Arial), and bolded text (don’t use it), but Google crawls for keywords (and other SEO requirements) when trying to find you.

Here are some keywords you should add to your resume and website:

  • Cybersecurity
  • Data Analysis
  • HTML, Javascript, Python (Etc.)
  • Critical Thinking
  • Communication
  • Cloud Computing
  • Android, macOS, Windows (Etc.)
  • User Experience Design or UX
  • Ecommerce 
  • Critical Thinking

Before you submit your application, run it through an ATS resume analyzer tool just in case.

Research the Company and Avoid General Resumes

A general resume is an application that a candidate will use for all job posts. You’ll want to research the company beforehand, so you can customize your resume for each job.

What are the Benefits of Company Research and a Non-General Resume?

Most companies will ask the question, “what do you know about our company?” in the interview stage, but you shouldn’t wait until then to research a business. You’ll need to know about their company culture, their history, their products, and their social media presence for your resume.

Not only will your research turn up a lot of keywords you can use in your resume and website, but it also helps you craft the perfect CV and application. Targeted applications are more likely to be noticed by employers, so it pays to do some research before submitting your resume.

How Do I Make a Focused Resume?

As stated, reviewing the job description and adding relevant keywords can help your application get noticed. You should edit the following sections whenever you’re applying for a new job:

  • Headline: Change your job title so it matches the job title on the job description
  • Summary: Explain in 3-4 sentences why you’d be a good fit for the company.
  • Experience: Highlight key skills the employer is looking for.
  • Education: If you have a degree, use the education-related keywords used in the job description. Don’t include your high school diploma for high-level IT jobs.

And last but not least, always proofread your resume. Spelling or grammatical errors can disqualify your application.

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