IT Career Hacks for 2017 (CBT Nuggets)

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This handy gem popped up on my Youtube feed today:

This CBT Nugget video on IT Career Hacks for 2017 is a great starting point for anyone looking to either get into IT in 2017 or expand your career options.

Although i’m a SysAdmin / Network Manager / 2nd line / 3rd line / jack of all trades its handy to keep an ear to the ground about the general trends within the IT world as these will impact in the skillsets required for jobs in the future.

It’s well worth a watch.

The video also gives some great tips to get hired, be it your first IT job or one of many. The tips are:

  • Bring your best to the table
  • Engage
  • Network
  • Never stop learning

Here’s my take on them..

Bring your best to the table

This is vital if you are looking for your first job in IT. Once you’ve secured your interview you need to show what you can do – you need to show a passion for the subject, if you’ve built a homelab to try new things, the document it. If you’ve setup a wireless mesh in your area so you can share internet with your neighbours, write it down.

Even if you have setup Plex at home for your media collection or run a Minecraft server in your spare time, these are the skills that you need to show.

If you are an established professional then don’t omit this either, build a series of case studies and projects that you have worked on even if they are unrelated to the position you are applying for. Go into an interview with more evidence than you need.

Engage

It is vital in an interview that you also ask pointed questions to the prospective employer. You need to see the interview as a two way street, you interview them as much as they interview you.

One question i’d always ask is about the company culture as this is (to me) as important as another consideration. Ask about the work environment, the team structure, company mission and values etc.

Asking these questions shows an employer that you are keen, and that should hold you in good standing.

Network

Get out and meet people. Get yourself on LinkedIn or other professional network. Look for local IT interest groups. Join a professional body (such as the BCS). These are invaluable if you are looking for work in IT as I’ve often found that a personal recommendation goes a long way. If you can get into an interview situation without going via a recruitment agency then that is a great thing as many recruitment companies don’t “get” IT people.

Never stop learning

This is a no-brainer. The IT world is constantly moving onwards and upwards and the skill-sets required don’t remain static.

Challenge yourself to learn something new everyday. Invest in a subscription to an online training platform (Pluralsight and CBT Nuggets are both excellent) or even trawl YouTube for some great free training (I’m planning a blog post on this soon so keep an eye out). Once you are secure in a job, keep learning as you never know what you’ll end up doing or what path your career will take.

These are just my take on the points in the video and they have worked well for me in the past. Good luck in your job hunting for 2017, keep plugging away and never give up!

(Image screen grab from CBT Nuggets Рused without permission)

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