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Software Engineering grad, struggling to land interviews.

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  • Aug 20th, 2021 9:50 pm
[OP]
Newbie
Aug 7, 2021
4 posts
3 upvotes

Software Engineering grad, struggling to land interviews.

I just can't get past the screening process. What should I do when it comes to my resume?
I don't have experience but I have listed all my projects done in school.

Do I need to focus on the design and get a modern template or can I just send them a traditional one?

Are there other jobs that I can apply for that are easier to land interviews in?
19 replies
Deal Expert
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Jul 22, 2006
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a) Github
b) Leetcode
c) Luck

^_^
Member
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Nov 15, 2016
499 posts
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george__ wrote: a) Github
b) Leetcode
c) Luck

^_^
You forgot Grokking SysDesign xD. That'll help with System design type of scenarios/questions
@TurtleTech -- I'd recommend to post a redacted resume in this thread so we can also look / review it. It's important to see whether it's your resume or just competition. Although competition for entry level roles is extremely tough.
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Jul 22, 2006
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Toad99 wrote: You forgot Grokking SysDesign xD. That'll help with System design type of scenarios/questions
@TurtleTech -- I'd recommend to post a redacted resume in this thread so we can also look / review it. It's important to see whether it's your resume or just competition. Although competition for entry level roles is extremely tough.
Yup. It's very very tough.

Maybe OP has a poor GPA....
Member
Mar 27, 2021
385 posts
467 upvotes
When you say screening, does that mean you are getting calls for first step interview or you are not getting to that step at all?
Long Time RFDer / restarting life
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Aug 18, 2005
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If you can't even get an interview (no calls), I suggest you check on:

- Make sure your resume has enough keywords that they are looking for. (Do you seriously think they hand-examine the thousands of resumes they receive? The first gate is a keywords and metrics game.)
- Unless you are supremely confident in your written English skills, get someone to thoroughly proof-read it for spelling and grammar. Even 1 spelling or grammar error will get you tossed. Seriously, I look at people's 2-page "final version" resumes and I can still find 15+ errors on them. (I have a friend who is incredibly smart, he's a medical doctor now, but he still knew enough to get my help in proofreading his stuff, since he has a different first language.)
- If you have a name that might be foreign / unpronounceable / unclear gender from a Western perspective, pick a Western pseudomym and put your legal first name in brackets. For example: "Justin (Jiang) Wang". (This is not sjw-approved, but it works, especially for foreign females in the tech industry. Yes I will get flamed for writing this.)
- Make a clear chart upfront on your skills, and years / level of experience.
- If you are a new grad, make sure it's no longer than 2 pages long.
- Ensure your correct CONTACT INFO is on the resume! Add a QR code for your LinkedIn. If you don't havea LinkedIn, create one and make it easy for them to look you up.
- If you have the opportunity to add a cover letter, do it! And make sure it is absolutely meticulous in spelling and grammar. Your MS Word / spell check / etc., won't catch everything. PROOF READ. If you're not supremely confident in English, get help.
- Recognize that new grads don't really have much skills, other than a good framework to start learning job-specific skills, and a recognition of knowing what they don't know. It is hard to differentiate yourself. But soft -skills are still hard for companies to find! Show your personality, attention-to-detail, meticulousness. Highlight your ability to adapt, your drive, your energy, your enthusiasm, ability to take initiative. Show them you are excited to contribute. That will pique their interest!

Most importantly... MAKE IT EASY FOR THEM TO WANT YOU! Don't make them hunt for the good stuff. Screeners WANT to find people to like. Make it EASY for them and they will want to meet you.
- casual gastronomist -
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May 30, 2005
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^^All that is good to keep in mind, but OP, if you have no experience, as a hiring manager, I'm honestly not going to look at it. There are tons of new grads with co-op and internship experience, companies would rather take a chance with them.

You need to have experience on there, even if it's not relevant, even if it's a volunteering experience, you need experience.
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Aug 18, 2005
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Jon Lai wrote: ^^All that is good to keep in mind, but OP, if you have no experience, as a hiring manager, I'm honestly not going to look at it. There are tons of new grads with co-op and internship experience, companies would rather take a chance with them.

You need to have experience on there, even if it's not relevant, even if it's a volunteering experience, you need experience.
Agreed. This also includes contributions to open source projects, and tutoring other people in computer science type fields.
- casual gastronomist -
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Oct 24, 2010
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Jon Lai wrote: ^^All that is good to keep in mind, but OP, if you have no experience, as a hiring manager, I'm honestly not going to look at it. There are tons of new grads with co-op and internship experience, companies would rather take a chance with them.

You need to have experience on there, even if it's not relevant, even if it's a volunteering experience, you need experience.
+1

While not Software Engineering, every entry level engineering role we post yields over 300 resumes. The old adage is true. You have to impress me within 60 seconds of me picking up that resume or you move to the discard pile.

I'll spend several minutes thoroughly reading the 20% of resumes that give me that good 60 second first impression.

It's a harsh reality, unfortunately.
Member
May 29, 2017
459 posts
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what roles are you applying for?

What does your resume even look like?

How are you applying for jobs?

How are you presenting yourself?

What did you do in co-op? (this is huge)

These are the questions that you need to answer.

Who do you think is reading your resume? The technical person or the Hr?

There are several factors you need to consider when you're applying for jobs. You really didn't give any data about yourself other than "software engineer" For me... I really dont know anything else other than that. Are you doing that in your resume?

You should also consider when applying that you can show off the job and the world of it... are you going for front end? Discuss it in your resume? What languages do you know and how long have you worked on them? You're a fresh grad... you're green so you gotta show them you're capable of being seasoned and not that you just gradated.
Sr. Member
Aug 15, 2018
723 posts
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Don't take it as an offense, definitely not meant to be one but hopefully constructive criticism. Your first post on the forum, no hello, no thank you etc... not that I think it's an absolute necessity, but having worked in HR, I can only stress that making a good impression is equally important as your technical skills.
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Aug 18, 2005
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mattnew wrote: Don't take it as an offense, definitely not meant to be one but hopefully constructive criticism. Your first post on the forum, no hello, no thank you etc... not that I think it's an absolute necessity, but having worked in HR, I can only stress that making a good impression is equally important as your technical skills.
I'm guessing the OP is a current RFD user, who created a new account to ask this "embarassing" question.
[OP]
Newbie
Aug 7, 2021
4 posts
3 upvotes
When you say screening, does that mean you are getting calls for first step interview or you are not getting to that step at all?
It’s the first step, I am getting my resume rejected.
[OP]
Newbie
Aug 7, 2021
4 posts
3 upvotes
Dynatos wrote: +1

While not Software Engineering, every entry level engineering role we post yields over 300 resumes. The old adage is true. You have to impress me within 60 seconds of me picking up that resume or you move to the discard pile.

I'll spend several minutes thoroughly reading the 20% of resumes that give me that good 60 second first impression.

It's a harsh reality, unfortunately.

I see, how many out of the 300 get picked for interviews?
[OP]
Newbie
Aug 7, 2021
4 posts
3 upvotes
Jon Lai wrote: ^^All that is good to keep in mind, but OP, if you have no experience, as a hiring manager, I'm honestly not going to look at it. There are tons of new grads with co-op and internship experience, companies would rather take a chance with them.

You need to have experience on there, even if it's not relevant, even if it's a volunteering experience, you need experience.
I do have experience with jobs (Uber/Skip) that are not relevant to the field. I thought It wouldn’t count. I am ok with internships, but a lot of them are looking for returning students.

Am I screwed?, I have an opportunity to become a call centre agent, should I do that and try again later?

Do school projects count as experience?
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May 30, 2005
47757 posts
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TurtleTech wrote: I do have experience with jobs (Uber/Skip) that are not relevant to the field. I thought It wouldn’t count. I am ok with internships, but a lot of them are looking for returning students.

Am I screwed?, I have an opportunity to become a call centre agent, should I do that and try again later?

Do school projects count as experience?
Yes, put everything on there if there's nothing better to put. Any experience is better than no experience. I see value in someone being an Uber driver, especially if you present it correctly. Someone who has no tech experience but is able to pull in $$ with 5- star ratings on Uber, for example, shows grit and customer service.
Jr. Member
Nov 3, 2014
107 posts
36 upvotes
Mississauga, ON
Maybe post a redacted copy of your resume here to get some feedback
Deal Addict
Jan 8, 2006
1615 posts
893 upvotes
Toad99 wrote: You forgot Grokking SysDesign xD. That'll help with System design type of scenarios/questions
@TurtleTech -- I'd recommend to post a redacted resume in this thread so we can also look / review it. It's important to see whether it's your resume or just competition. Although competition for entry level roles is extremely tough.
He can also post it here https://www.reddit.com/r/cscareerquesti ... trict_sr=1

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