Jacob Singer
Post Karma: 0 | Comment Karma: 2
Last 5 Posts
Last 5 Comments

I graduated from a bootcamp (App Academy) in early 2016 and have been working as an engineer in San Francisco for about two years now. Here's a bit of what I learned about the job search process.

First of all, a month is not a long time. I know it feels like it is when you're job searching, but it's not. If your program told you you'd get a job right after graduating (unless they have specific partner companies they place grads at, which I think a few programs do), they like to you. Very few bootcamp grads find a job that quickly. It took me about 5 months to land my first job. Average for my cohort of 50-ish people was 3-4 months (and this is with App Academy's considerable job search program and alumni network).

Second, companies/recruiters probably aren't rejecting you specifically because you went to a bootcamp. (Some might be. They suck and you don't want to work for them anyways) They're probably rejecting you because you don't have any professional experience. Even if the job positing doesn't specifically say so, companies will almost always prefer candidates with some experience.

Third, there are a LOT of new bootcamp grads out there now. I don't know where you're located, but in San Francisco there are around a dozen bootcamps, each graduating around 50 people every couple of months. All of their resumes look basically the same, and they're all applying to the same positions. This article (https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/bootcamp-grads-dont-believe-startup-hype-charley-wang/) by a startup founder/ceo I met while job searching does a pretty good job of explaining it from a company's perspective. Basically, if 200 bootcamp grads apply for a job, you have to reject 199 of them.

Fourth, and probably most importantly, what are you doing to look for jobs? Many job boards, company websites, etc are basically black holes for resumes. My previous company had jobs posted on AngelList and our own website, and I'm pretty sure we literally never checked either one. Everyone we hired was either through a service like Hired or Alist Talent, a referral by a current employee, or someone our recruiter found and reached out to. I'm not saying you shouldn't apply on company websites or boards like AngelList, etc, but you need to apply to a LOT of them. I applied to over 500 jobs before I got one, which was high but not abnormal for an App Academy grad.

As far as advice goes?

First, don't get too down on yourself. Job searching is exhausting, and rejection sucks. You should not be worried that a month has passed without landing a job. It's not unusual.

Second, treat job searching like a job until you get one. When I was searching, I found that scheduling my day in strict time blocks was very helpful. If your bootcamp has an official job search program, career coaches, anything like that, they can probably help with this.

Third, network. Network network network network network.

Fourth, keep working on projects. Learn a new language or framework and build something with it. If you're in an area that has hackathons, meetups, etc, go to them. Look for an open source project to contribute to. Get something cool on your resume that other bootcamp grads might not have.

I hope this was helpful, or at least informative. I'd be happy to talk more directly or look over your resume if you'd like, feel free to reach out.