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How to Position Your Skills When Applying for Jobs

Confidently apply for IT jobs you feel are out of your league by effectively positioning your skill set.

How to Position Your Skills When Applying for JobsIf you’re like other IT pros, you’ve put time and effort into building your skill set. You may have earned numerous IT certifications and spent many years getting work experience in the field. Perhaps you even earned a tech-related degree, even though a degree isn’t always required to work in IT. Read on to learn how to get the IT job you want by effectively positioning your unique skill set.

IT Skills > Academic Degrees

Before applying for an IT job, it’s essential that you know what hiring managers are looking for. Without that knowledge, you could end up selling yourself short and not going after jobs you think are out of your league.

Many employers are more impressed with IT skills than 4-year degrees. Degrees have value, but they often aren’t the first thing hiring managers look for on your LinkedIn profile or resume these days. Skills-based hiring is all the rage right now, and that’s not likely to change anytime soon.

Related Blog: Top IT Skills in Demand in 2023 

Don’t Sell Yourself Short When Job Seeking

Have you ever searched for an IT job, found something you were interested in, considered applying but decided against it? This is a common scenario for an IT pro who feels unqualified for a specific job because they lack a degree or a certain level of experience.

If you’ve passed on applying for jobs you felt you weren’t good enough for, don’t beat yourself up – get excited! The chances are better than ever that you can land your dream job, even if you don’t have an academic degree. All you need are the right skills, and to know how to position them as you apply for jobs.

Tips for Leveraging Your Skills to Land an Awesome IT Job

Leveraging and positioning your professional skills to get the job you want is simple. Here are a few ways you can use your IT skills to your advantage when job seeking:

1. Make a big deal of your skills. IT pros without college degrees should never feel like second-class citizens when applying for jobs. They should make a big deal of the skills they already possess. It doesn’t matter if the skills were gleaned from a degree program, certification, work experience or independent study.

Celebrate your unique skill set by highlighting it on your resume and LinkedIn profile. Be sure to talk about your professional skills, as well. And don’t just speak of your skills when networking. Talk about them with family and friends to build your confidence and develop a habit of being aware of what you are good at. While you’re at it, come up with examples of when you’ve used specific skills in past roles (not just IT roles).

2. Know what skills a job calls for. Instead of worrying about not having a degree a job posting mentions, put your energy into discovering what skills the job requires. Don’t stop at noting the skills mentioned in the posting. Read between the lines and imagine what skills, including professional skills, would be needed in that role.

More than likely, you’ll possess more skills than you think for a variety of IT jobs. Taking inventory of what skills you have mastered, what skills you are good at and what skills you are developing will help you match your current skill set to the skill set in a specific job posting.

3. Continually build your skills. Hiring managers love job candidates who are actively building their IT skills. A great way to gain new, in-demand skills is by earning at least one of the most popular IT certifications on the market. Even if you are in the process of prepping for your exam and haven’t passed it yet, your ambition will speak volumes to employers.  

As you pursue a new IT certification, be aware of each skill that you are gleaning from it. Don’t hesitate to list these skills on your resume, LinkedIn profile, etc. Be proud of being a lifelong learner and ensure employers see you as one.

Work on Your Confidence   

If you’ve been holding back and not applying for IT jobs because of something you feel you lack, it’s time to step up and make your presence known to employers. This is the era of skills-based hiring. Be confident in the skills you have, don’t stress about not having a 4-year degree and be consistently proactive in learning new, relevant skills. With this mindset, you can go far in IT.

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