How to Land a Job in Big Tech
Tech industry jobs often provide the types of salary and benefits that allow you to build a comfortable life. Some companies go above and beyond. Compensation, benefits, stock buying programs, and the prestige of having their name on your resume make some companies a target for many people. With the large number of applications at these companies, you may wonder if it is even realistic to apply for a position, and if you do, if there is any way to stand out from the crowd.
There is good news. The fact that these companies are well-known enough to garner such respect is a clue of how large they are. That means they are always looking for talent. While the application pool is deep, they have plenty of positions to fill. The jobs are still very competitive, but many people who work there applied, and were hired, with no special connections. The other bit of good news about working for these companies is that their interview process is well-known and predictable. When you go into a job interview for a smaller company, you don’t know what you are facing. The hiring process at large tech companies is well-documented, allowing you to prepare.
Prepare Your Finances
Plan to interview multiple times with a company before receiving an offer. Combine that with the time required to land the first interview and scheduling conflicts with others who participate in the hiring process, and it can take months to secure a position for even the most qualified candidates. Searching for a year or more is not out of the question. Having your finances in order allows you to conduct your job search with less urgency. Instead of being tempted to grab the first job offer from any company that has an offer, you can indulge yourself in pursuing your dream job. Refinancing your student loans by taking out a new loan with a private lender will lower your monthly obligations. A student loan refinance option is available that offers a lower interest rate or longer repayment terms, both of which create some breathing room in your budget. In addition, reducing monthly expenses like cutting the cable cord or cancelling the gym membership can also free up extra cash.
Look for a Mentor
Your college career center is often a good place to make connections. Ask to meet up or even if it is okay to ask a few questions over email. Find out what they did to land their entry-level job and how they progressed to their current role. In addition to mentorship, building a relationship with someone who is employed in big tech opens the door for a referral. You don’t want to be disingenuous when making the connection, but it is common for current employees to receive referral bonuses for successful hires. If your mentor thinks you may be a strong candidate, they will probably be happy to provide the referral.
Interviewing will make or break your ability to land a job in big tech. You can expect a technical interview, where you will show your coding proficiency. This can take place online, through a third-party coding website, or written out, by hand. Regardless of the format, take your time and talk out your solution as you work. Working in silence doesn’t give the interviewer insight into your thought process. Talking out your programming choices as you work demonstrates that you can think like a programmer, even if the answer you come up with is not the recommended option.