My job hunt has finally come to a close. Before spring break, I secured 3 interviews. I went to the first – and enjoyed it so much that I decided that’s what I wanted to do. The second interview the next day stretched on for four and a half hours! I left there knowing that I never wanted to work there. Something about writing in a custom version of COBOL (with added GUIs…weird) 40 hours per week in a solitary office with no windows did not thrill me.
The good interview was last Tuesday. This morning they called and offered me the job! I won’t disclose major details here – but the wage is very good. The benefits are great. They’re even going to help pay for my relocation! How’s that for nice? All that and the company is located in the Woodlands, TX. It has to be the most beautiful place in all of Houston. I am really happy.
This job search has been a learning experience. What do I really want to do? What makes a job worthwhile? What am I absolutely unwilling to do? These are all good questions. My Dad always tells me that if you’re doing a job that you enjoy, it doesn’t matter how much you get paid. I’ve held fast to that belief and I think it’s done me well. Here are some quick thoughts about the job hunt:
- Never settle for something you could see yourself hating.
- If the drive to the interview and back feel like traveling cross country, don’t work there.
- Networking (connections) are the best way to get your resume in front of the people who make decisions. I only got one serious inquiry in all of my applications through job board sites.
- Avoid negative words during interviews. Even if the interview goes fantastic…those words will haunt you until you hear whether the company wants you or not. Be honest – but positive.
- Aptitude tests, canned interview processes (heavy recruiting), and non-knowledgeable points of contact to a company make for an extremely non-appetizing job outlook. Interviews go both ways.
- Smile and laugh when you can at an interview. Ask questions. The good companies don’t need any more yes-men than they already have.
My sincere hope is that this is the last you’ll see about Job Hunting on this blog.
I’ve got some good news on the job hunting front. After lots of applications and job-board searching, I’ve managed to secure an interview (yes one) at a company in Northwest Houston. I’ve also garnered a couple of phone interviews (mostly recruiters looking for more experience…). But this is progress! Considering how little time I’ve been hunting a job, a couple potential hires is a pretty good amount (I think). What’s most interesting to me is that my solid in-person job interview was acquired by word of mouth from a friend on a car forum. That just goes to show the depth of importance networking plays in finding a job!
So what skills are IT companies looking for in the Houston area? In my searching, the most requested skills are as follows:
- C#/ASP.net/VB.net/.net in general
- Oracle, SQL Server
Doing a Background Check?
In the likely event that one of those companies ends up on this blog while doing a background check – welcome! You’re one of only a few to have actually seen this corner of the WWW.
I decided earlier in the semester to discontinue this graduate degree and go after something I had more fun with – specifically an IT career. I haven’t really gone into much detail here on what my skillset is (besides toying with Ubuntu…which really isn’t a skill). But my background is primarily that of an Information Systems graduate (with a high GPA) with some self-employed programming projects under my belt. Looking for jobs online hasn’t been exactly pleasant – or yielded results (yet).
Here are a few places I’ve put my resume out to (and found jobs to apply to):
These seem to be the front-runners in the market as far as job-boards go for IT people. So why has my search been trying? A couple reasons:
- I have virtually ZERO experience being that I’m a college grad and haven’t been in the industry. Many jobs want at least “1+” or “2+” years of experience in an area I consider myself to be pretty good at – but don’t qualify for because I haven’t worked a job doing such.
- I’m currently located in Northwest Arkansas…and am looking for a job in Houston, TX. This shouldn’t be a barrier – but to some it seems like it is.
Overall this post is a rant. I know it – you know it. Finding a place to “get your foot in the door” without being religated to the Help-Desk is difficult when looking online. Searching for jobs with the text “Entry Level” yields little to nothing consistently. Perhaps this is a market? Shouldn’t there be a place for the nation’s top IT firms to recruit the nation’s top IT grads and talent? Many of us are willing and able to relocate. I think I may be onto something here…