I was not sure about making another “got a job” post but I wanted to add another storyline. I think one of the best pieces of advice I can give is, do it your way. There is a mountain of advice on the internet and not all of it will work for you. You have to trust yourself and just keep going.
I started learning web-dev in Aug 2017. I moved out of my home in September, spent the last year traveling, living with friends, doing other business ventures. So, practice came in sprints with large gaps (that sucked).
I started on FCC. I then moved to The Odin Project. Worked on that for about a month before I realized I did not like that method of learning (I’m a video tutorial guy). Then I bought Colt Steele’s intro to web dev course on Udemy. I loved that and completed it in about a month.
I built a portfolio and started applying for jobs. Which produced mixed results, which I chronicle below.
I then bought Colt Steele’s advanced web dev tutorial, Stephen Girder’s Coding Interview Bootcamp, and Girder’s Modern React with Redux all from Udemy. I completed and partially completed those courses and added cool projects to my portfolio the whole time.
At the time, I thought that my portfolio was not good enough and that I needed to add better projects and pad my resume with some more tech. Honestly, I’m not sure if that was important or not.
How I applied:
- Angel.co(my favorite website, but few Junior positions. I talked to 5 companies through them).
- Indeed, LinkedIn, Monster, Dice, and Glassdoor (never heard a single thing from these sites)
- Recruiters who contacted me (never had anything good from these either)
- A local recruiting company called Repurpose.co (got my job from these folks. )
My initial strategy was to apply to the most jobs possible. At the end of my experience, I applied to 130+ jobs. I had 2 onsite technical interviews, 4 pre-screening challenges, and 2 non-technical phone screenings. Maybe 8 or 9 companies responded to me in any way.
How I got the job:
This part is crazy but true. I stumbled across Repurpose(a small recruiting company) while I was searching for startups in Michigan to apply to. I applied to them, had a phone interview with a rep. One week later they connected me to a company who interviewed me on the phone the next day. Three days later they invited me in for a whiteboard interview(which I crushed). The next day they made me an offer. I have no other leads at this time and several companies have ghosted me after I crushed thier take-home tehcnicals.
My tips for success
- Do you. At the end of the day you need to learn to program. Do whatever it takes to learn that and on whatever timeline.
- Apply for jobs. Don’t wait until you know every trendy framework, once you can make a website from scratch and can solve some basic algos, make a portfolio and start applying.
- Never give up! This is so hard. And at times it feels impossible. But just keep trucking and eventually you will get lucky. Believe me, 4 days ago I was browsing ads for code schools because I was so convinced I would never get a job.
- You have to get lucky. You can do everything right and get no bites. At some point you just need to be at the right place at the right time.
- Practice making things!
- Practice Algos. There is no better way to screw yourself than to get a whiteboard interview at an amazing company and show up without having practiced. I literally bought a small foam whiteboard and practiced 10-20 algos on it. I used codesignal for the problems. I found out that I preferred solving algos on whiteboards.
- It’s okay to not be passionate about coding, you can grow that. Read this article. I started with a small interest in coding and it is quickly blossoming into a passion.
I hope this post inspires some of you to keep going. And please share your questions and comments below. I will try to answer them all.