Silicon Valley is one of the most exciting places in the world for young professionals with an interest in technology and software development. Unsurprisingly, landing a job in the Valley can be easier said than done. There are a handful of things you can do to ensure that your résumé makes it to the top of the heap, with the following being just a few examples.
1. Make Use of Your College Network
A college education is often considered to be a prerequisite for those looking to get a job in Silicon Valley. It’s important to realize that your education was worth far more than just a byline on your résumé. Many people don’t realize how useful their college network can be when it comes to making important connections in the professional world. Whether you’re fresh out of school or you’re coming up on your 10-year reunion, chances are there is someone in your college network that could help you get an "in" at a hot Silicon Valley tech firm. You may also want to contact the guidance department at your college to see if anyone on staff may be able to help you in your search.
2. Scour Job Boards Relentlessly
It’s often said that finding the right job is a full-time job in and of itself. Countless hours can be spent searching for inroads, and oftentimes, success comes from maintaining a constant sense of awareness about positions that are currently available. This couldn’t be more true of Silicon Valley, an area where jobs are filled as quickly as they open up. While it never hurts to get in touch with companies that you have a strong interest in working for, job boards can be extremely helpful in giving you a sense of what’s out there. Craigslist and similar boards surely aren’t perfect, but high-paying jobs can often be had if you’re willing to sift through the pile. Remember to check each day, too, as new job postings are always popping up.
3. Perfect the Pitch
You’ve found a listing for your dream job — so have hundreds of others. How are you going to set yourself apart from the competition? In most cases, it’s going to come down to perfecting your pitch. Between your résumé and cover letter, you have one chance to make it clear that you’re the best fit for the job. It may be worthwhile to work with a professional in crafting your résumé, although there are plenty of free examples scattered throughout the web for referencing. The pitch exists within your cover letter. Without getting too wordy, list off the reasons why the company you’re contacting simply can’t afford to not hire you. Keep things clean, clear, and to the point.
If you’re currently located in or near Silicon Valley, you may be tempted to stop into a company to drop your résumé off in purpose. Generally, however, today’s employers prefer to deal with résumé and cover letter packages through email. A personal follow-up can be warranted, but this is best done via telephone.
See also: How to Get Hired by Google
Searching for the perfect job in Silicon Valley can certainly test your patience, but persistence is the key to success. Put in the work, and you’ll no doubt stumble upon a great opportunity.