This article is part of the Coaching Collective series, featuring tips and expertise from Flatiron School Career Coaches. Every Flatiron School graduate is eligible to receive up to 180 days of 1:1 career coaching with one of our professional coaches. This series is a glimpse of the expertise you can access during career coaching at Flatiron School.
What to do after graduating from bootcamp?
So you’ve graduated from a coding bootcamp and you’re ready to start the job search. First, do the work to create your personal brand — check out my article on how to create your personal brand for your job search.
Once you aware of the services you can offer to a company, it’s time to identify your Target Audience, what industries, job roles and companies would be the most interested in your background and the services you can provide.
Remember, prepwork is the foundation to ensuring that your next move is aligned with your interests, strengths, career goals, and future happiness. The clearer you are about the skills you have and the services you can offer the easier it will be to identify your Target Market, those companies who are in need of people who can provide the services that you are offering. Let’s get started!
1. Define your target industry
Start by identifying the industries you are most interested in working for, your target audience. Start with the most narrow focus and then expand out. For example, if you are super interested in working for a tech startup, what type of tech start up? There are many areas you can focus on such as healthcare, finance, real estate, marketing, etc.
2. Identify your ideal job role
Think about what you want to do on a daily basis, what functions you want to perform, skills you have and experience you are able to offer that are aligned with the roles you are most interested in, what makes you qualified to provide the services the job description is looking for?
Let’s say you have narrowed your search down to working at an advertising/marketing technology company, and you want to work with data to help companies make strategic decisions based on data. Take a look at the open roles at companies in that space. Are companies looking for someone like you, who can provide services that you are offering?
Read the job descriptions for the roles that are looking for someone with your background, experience and skills. Once you have identified your “ideal role” in your “desired industry” take a look at the skills for those roles. Review descriptions, circle the required job functions and skills, and make a list of the top 10-20 skills you see repeated in the job descriptions. Now it’s time to “Make the Match”!
Review the list of skills compared to what you have done in your past. Write examples of your accomplishments and projects that illustrate your past experiences and link that experience back to the bullets in the job description, identify the connections between your past experience, your accomplishments, and the role you are interested in. You will use this information later when you are telling your story and marketing yourself to companies in your target market.
3. Create a list of “Dream Companies.”
Next you will create a list of “Dream Companies” – companies that have a mission or vision aligned with your interests, are offering products, services, that you are excited about and most importantly are in need of team members that can provide the services that you are offering. Write down your ideal situation based on these factors:
- What size company do you want to work for?
- What is the corporate culture?
- Is the company a startup or is it more established?
- Do you want to work autonomously or as a part of a team?
- Do you want a remote or an office role?
- How much travel are you willing to do?
If you do not have a preference, you can explore all those options and have conversations with the different types of companies to narrow down what might be the best fit for you. Create a list of “dream companies” that align with your answers to the above questions.
Now that you have defined your Personal Brand, and your Target Audience, it’s time to practice making the connections and illustrating how your experience is a “perfect fit” for your Target Audience. Time to share your brand!