If the thought of becoming a web developer came across your mind, but you are worried about not having a degree, or previous experience to get that job, don’t sweat it! In this blog post I will cover everything you need to know.
1 – Learn enough HTML and CSS
First thing you need to do is obviously start learning HTML and CSS, this are the main foundations of a web developer skills. You will need to know them in order to build simple websites.
I get this question asked a lot, yes it is possible to get a job only knowing HTML and CSS. There are so many jobs out there requiring developers to build some websites from designs, html email templates, updating content in older or new websites, etc.
2 – Create a Portfolio Website
This is your personal website, where you will put in your best projects, to show future companies and recruiters, your skills and what are you capable of.
This website initially should be completely written by you, do not use any frameworks like bootstrap or wordpress, remember you want to show that you are capable of building a complete website all by yourself, make sure its responsive to work well on desktops, tablets and mobiles. This can be achieved using CSS Media queries.
3 – Choose your Projects carefully
How many projects should you have here? In my opinion the sweet number is three. People get impatient when they have to look through hundreds of portfolios, so if your number is bigger than three, they might just skip one of your best projects, because they will not check all your projects most likely.
4 – Get your CV / Resume ready
Now you need to make sure your CV is on point, with all the information about yourself, what kind of experience you have, your skills, any previous jobs you had.
Now here is a good point to mention your projects, since you don’t have previous experience, this is the best time to talk about what have you accomplished with them, what languages you used on them, etc. Make sure you have links for Github repositories where you should have your code, if you don’t have a Github account, this is a MUST! Drop everything you are doing right now and create one.
The reason is, recruiters and companies want to see your code, and see your skill level.
Also make sure to provide links to access demos of your projects, so everyone can see and test them.
Additional links you should have, are your personal website and LinkedIn, I will write a dedicated blog post just for the CV topic.
It’s time to search the most popular job boards of your country, and upload your CV there. Here in UK where I live, some of the most popular ones are indee.co.uk, cv-library.co.uk and reed.co.uk.
5 – Getting your first interview
Recruiters are on a hunt to find candidates (web developers), to place them in companies that are looking for them, this recruiters get a bonus based on the salary that you might get if you get the job. Let’s say they helped you find a job with a salary of $40 000 USD/year, they can get a bonus of 10% of your salary for example, this amount of course is different from company to company.
So just with you they will get $4000 USD bonus from the company who hired you, imagine if they help other 2 candidates in a month, they could potentially earn $12 000 USD in a month… But don’t think is that easy for them as well..
You see now why they are all crazy around hunting for new developers. Initially don’t worry to much and get their help, because they will help you land some interviews and possibly your first job.
The good thing about them is that they do all the work for you, and you don’t even have to be applying for jobs. In my case for example I didn’t apply for a single until today, and I have been already in 3 different companies /jobs.
6 – Increase your chances of getting hired
Here are some final tips to land that first job, start a blog or a YouTube channel. You can talk about your journey of what you have been learning, what kind of challenges you faced, do some small tutorials to other people to learn from you.
The whole point is to show that you are a genuine person, someone who is really interested in web development, and this is an awesome opportunity for people to connect and know more about!
I’m gonna be honest here, I got my first job without any blogs or youtube channels, but the next 2 jobs I got, I had already my YouTube channel youtube.com/user/telmo87
And thanks to it, it was so much easier for me to get those jobs because people already knew me, they knew my personality, they knew my skills from the several tutorials I made. I basically didn’t even had to do any kind of coding challenge. Isn’t that amazing or what?
And the best thing with YouTube and blogs, is that you can also earn some side income with it, and they don’t cost nothing.
Hope this blog post was useful to you, and any other questions let me know in the comments down below.