Tips to secure tech jobs
Following our previous article to announce the objectives of this year’s event to promote graduate employability, organizers of the annual Tech Job Fair (TJF2023) have put together a series of workshops for unemployed graduates and those facing the prospects of a job change on how to prepare for job interviews, bargain for a good salary, and skills required for tech jobs. One workshop, hosted by Ghanaian journalist and author Kafui Dey, via Twitter space, is part of the pre-activities of TJF2023 designed to teach attendees how to seize opportunities and land their dream jobs at the forthcoming Tech Job Fair slated for Wednesday, February 22, 2023.
Human Resource Consultant and Career Coach, Emmaline Datey, who was the Guest Speaker for the Twitter space workshop, guided participants through three categories of preparation sessions, including how to prepare for in-person and virtual job interviews, how to effectively communicate one’s strengths and negotiate a good salary, and the important element that is required in a Curriculum Vitae (CV) to land one’s dream job.
Taking participants through the first session, she stressed it is now necessary for participants to consider creating great first impressions by dressing appropriately, researching to keep themselves informed about the company they are applying to, learning everything about the open position and job description, knowing your strengths, and articulating confidently.
She emphasized the need to hire a career coach to help guide and strengthen the skills and capacities required to improve one’s job-searching abilities.
On tips for negotiating salary, Ms. Datey said conducting in-depth research on what comparable organizations will pay for these roles helps to have a solid knowledge of what to demand as a reasonable starting rate for your position. She emphasized that to successfully negotiate a pay offer, all applicants for employment in a business should be able to clearly express their value and worth in terms of what they can help the organization achieve.
She guided participants through the last session on the five essential components needed in a professional CV, highlighting that a CV should respectively look clean and presentable to include the right fonts, text, colour, and design; should not include extra personal information like ethnicity, religion, gender, and age, as that may leave room for discrimination; should have a brief career or education relevant to the job; should not provide details of referees only when requested and last, a CV should not be over three pages.
Many people want to land their dream jobs and truth be told, there are many of these jobs available. However, applicants cannot secure them because they lack some skills needed to secure that top job. Below are ten (10) tips to note in securing that top job.
- Making an impressive first expression
First impressions usually involve an evaluation and result in an initial perception or mental idea of a person. It is important to look professional taking into consideration an appropriate dress code, whether in person or in a virtual interview. Making a positive first impression at a job interview creates a lasting impression while increasing the likelihood of success.
- Know yourself
Knowing yourself and what you stand for helps you position yourself for that top job. Knowing your competencies, strength, and weakness can help in boosting your confidence level to attain your dream top job. Be honest and ask yourself how the position you applied for fits into your personal goals and career development. Think about where you see yourself in a few years and what you need to do to get there. Having a clear idea of what you want to do and how you plan on getting there conveys confidence and drive.
- Know the company you are applying to
Job seekers need to conduct in-depth research on the company they intend to work with. This has been one of the easiest ways for recruiters to disqualify participants because they always appear to have no information on the company and how their employees can contribute to the company’s goal. Go beyond what social media says about the company and talk to people who have related to the company to gather more information. By looking at multiple sources, you will get a broader picture of the company (along with any negative press) and be ready to talk about why you would like to work there and what you can do for them.
- Research your job description
Knowing extensively about the job description helps articulate why you are the right person to be given that job. Thus, before you can show your interviewer why you would be a great hire, you need to know what they are looking for. Luckily, most organizations have laid out exactly what they want in an applicant in the job posting. It is therefore mandatory to go back to the description you looked at before you applied. Knowing this will help you emphasize throughout your interview why you are the right man for the job.
- Establish an online presence using your full name
Create a professional website containing your portfolio, resume, and any relevant materials to your field. Include a professional photo of yourself, a contact page, and a biography page.
- Know your professional jargon
Understanding professional business jargon comes in handy as it presents you as someone who understands the businesses and is ready to thrive in their corporate occupations. It presents you as a person who understands certain directions and can perform their job duties more efficiently.
- Get a career coach
For young people looking for a job or having to change jobs, having a career coach is non-negotiable. You need to have one and boost your confidence. Confidence is not the absence of fear or paranoia, but facing it and discipline make you do it. A career coach will help you navigate your development.
- Bargain for a good salary research
The easiest way to bargain for the highest bid depends on your experience, your credibility, your competence, and your ability to have gone the extra mile. Be intentional about your development to create value and worth for yourself and through that, if your employer searches for your name on the internet, they can attest to the fact that you are indeed the right person for the job and the bid becomes yours. Even if you are not ready to have the money conversation, you might still get asked about your salary expectations. To keep yourself from getting surprised, there is a need to conduct in-depth research on what comparable organizations will pay for these roles to have a solid knowledge of what a reasonable starting rate for the position is.
- Jot down important numbers and details
Do not forget about the numbers! Find some revenue figures, engagement numbers, budget or team sizes, percentages of time saved, or anything else you can use to communicate your impact. Throwing in some hard numbers when talking about your responsibilities and accomplishments or answering behavioral interview questions sweetens the deal and helps you tell a hiring manager why you are so awesome. You can even write them down so you can refer to them during the interview.
- Note down questions to ask your interviewers
It is always important to ask questions to clarify any misunderstanding and questions that are very specific to the job and company. And prepare more than you think you will need—you do not want to ask questions that have already been answered or be left with no backup options if the interviewer already touched on your first two questions during your conversation.
Another pre-activity to take place via Facebook Live, later this evening (Monday, February 20) at 7 PM, is a workshop on skills required to find tech jobs, to be hosted by Kobby Spiky Nkrumah, an IT Consultant, and Derek Laryea (Tech Entrepreneur) will be the guest speaker.
The Tech Job Fair is a FREE annual event for job seekers and employees, employers, businesses, professionals, and students, to promote graduate employability in Ghana. Visit www.techjobfairghana.com for registration and further details, and join us on Wednesday, February 22, 2023, for the event.
Author: Institute of ICT Professionals, Ghana / Tech Job Fair Ghana
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