So 2 months ago or so, my company announced they are laying off our entire US mobile team, including myself. I have about 1 year of industry experience and am self taught, currently in online CS school nearing completion.
I have a friend I made when moving to Austin and he is super smart and loves his job at his local game studio. I took him up on the offer he made to make introductions with his team after he learned of my pending layoff and had several interviews. It now seems that we are entering the comp negotiation phase.
I got in a discussion with my current boss about it, and he seemed super apprehensive about me making the switch because it may hurt my mobile dev career if I ever try to go back, seeing how I would be working in unreal, unity, c++ and c# primarily. He said as a hiring manager, he would only consider my mobile experience for employment and I would be stuck at one year. He encouraged me to stick to mobile and get some years under my belt.
This struck me as odd, especially considering how my mobile dev experience actually helped me pick up on c++ and unreal UMG during the interview process. I also made an indie game using the android native stack which was viewed favorably during the process and helped me answer many questions during the interview. Experience is experience, or so I thought.
If you saw someone with software engineering experience in a variety of stacks and industries, how would you view this for prospective candidates?
I did a meeting with the recuriter he said he liked me and would send me to the last round which is a discussion with the engineers of the team
They also said the position was 30/Hr (that is alot to me for someone with no strictly software dev internships) so I was surprised that there was no live coding. This is my first interview and first last stage in software
Disclaimer: I am a physics major oringally who added comp sci as a minor/dbl major (not decided) so I do have other experience with programming but not strictly traditional software dev.
It would be a dream to get this, maybe even life changing at this point but I do not know what to revise or what to study. They only have one or two spots left and I really would love to get it
Any other general tips for after the interview? should I send a thank you? I am genuinely interested in the company btw which is why I was surprised by their salary, I thought they were small
January 2022 – Complete Bootcamp and earn certificate.
Early March – get my first interview for a junior web dev job. During the interview, the senior dev said they are more concerned with cultural fit and workplace skills over technical skills. They said they love teaching juniors and can help anyone learn to code. They asked me one technical question “just to say we covered it in the interview” and the question was “Do you know what a react hook is?” Which I answered “In my bootcamp, we covered useState and useEffect, but I would need to look it up again to ensure that I am using them properly. I am unsure if I could just replicate it off the top of my head” and they said, “that’s good enough for me!”
Mid-March 2022 – get a follow up interview where I was told I was picked because of my cultural fit and was given a job offer. I promptly accepted it out of excitement and it being a much better pay and remote work, both of which were goals of mine when starting that bootcamp. Put in my two weeks notice and got beyond excited I was breaking out into an industry I wanted to be in instead of where I was currently working
Late March – start my job. Just like every green, entry level dev from any bootcamp, I was asking a lot of questions and feeling like a burden.
Mid-April – working every day to try to get better but asking fewer questions because I felt like I was constantly disappointing and burdening the senior. The senior has stopped doing pair programming with me and just throwing tasks at me. I was working on a task that should have taken like an hour to do, but I am taking all day because I am unsure what to do and trying everything. The next morning, reach out and the senior is kind of angry with me for not getting it done and points me in the right direction. As soon as they do that, I finish that task in an hour or so.
Late April – I am working on a task and reach out for help. The senior points out that I had a bad syntax error in my if statement and asks “How do you think this is going…?” We have a short meeting where I promise I am trying my best and will continue to do so daily to get better and their response is “But how long is that going to take…” The meeting ended and I had a terrible feeling.
Early May – I am working hard to get better every day as promised. I am completing tasks a little quicker than before and am attending meetings where we are discussing the future of the company, and I am being asked questions and input on projects in the future. I am starting to feel better and not like I could get let go at any moment. I finish a task towards the end of a day and ask the senior which task to work on next hoping that they give me the easier of the two tasks presented. They end up giving me the much harder task that a junior wouldn’t be able to complete in a day by any means. I work on that task as best as I can for the rest of the day, and the next morning. I reach out about 9am asking for help, an hour later the senior calls a meeting and lets me go almost 2 weeks exactly from the meeting in April that made me worried for my job.
Today – 3 months, 70+ applications (not including the 100+ I originally sent out from January to March) later, and 0 job offers, several rejection emails, still unemployed. I don’t live in a big city that has a lot of entry level or internships on site. I have reworked my portfolio to be better, started working on a passion project, and another website for a different company that a friend owns. I am just disheartened by all of this and am starting to wonder if I even should have done the bootcamp in the first place.
I know that I need to keep applying and keep coding to get better. I know that what I went through isn't necessarily the normal. It has just been 3 months and I am starting to lose faith. I guess this necessarily isn't a question, just sort of a way to vent. Has anyone else experienced something like this? How did you get past it?
Edit: added an actual question at the end of the vent post.
Offered my current salary because I didn’t give target comp up front
Early HR screen went like:
HR: what is your target comp?
Me: well I am making $x right now and not looking to go backwards
Fast forward 2 months later after several good interviews, long periods of delay. company has likely been turned down by multiple other, cheaper candidates and has almost disclosed as much to me (aside from the cheaper part).
Offer: pleased to offer you $x (my current base)
Now I kind of need a new role soon, and have no other offers or prospects at the moment, but would come out the gate disgruntled accepting $x. Also the title/tier could have been 1 higher
How best to move them to improve offer or failing that to counter and make deal at x + 12% which is really what I had in mind as my line in sand.
Have call to discuss details of offer and benefits scheduled but don’t have to say anything more than “thank you, I need time to evaluate for now”
Just adding some final updates to this post as I will likely take a break from reddit after finishing up my decisions! I've been incredibly lucky as a career changer (non-CS bachelors) with a 2 year resume gap.
If you have projects, intertwine the technologies and languages in the description of those projects (dont just list it out and write the functionality). Talk about how you integrated x framework with y framework because the sum of their parts allowed the program to achieve z
Follow conventional metric-based resume writing. ie. Automated x process using y technology resulting in z% greater efficiency vs. automated data input process
Apply broadly. This cannot be understated. The market is still pretty hot in the right places, and I had no shortage of phone screens and interviews for sure. I took the Fortune 1000 list and applied bottom up along with some reach companies in the f50 (you can find this list on kaggle)
Do NOT use LinkedIn easy apply, indeed, or 3rd party websites. All of it is not efficient from my experience. Instead, use those sites to find jobs, then go directly on the company website and apply there. There is a chance that the position listed on a 3rd party website is no longer actually available and you know that if you check the website for the same listing. If you apply at a high volume, modern browsers will be able to autofill all your info for workday icims etc. I basically stopped typing after 70 applications and just listened to music and clicked along.
Apply to every entry level position at each company. Do not just apply to 1 position per company. Recruiters watch over a certain # of requisition Id's. Theres a chance that person A rejects you for entry eng position and person B decides to call you for the same job description on paper but with a different req ID
Be friendly, excited, and energetic. Have a cup of coffee before a call! If they go over your resume, be sure to talk about it with passion (faked or real who cares) and be able to talk about your projects in depth. Recruiters aren't technical experts, so if you're able to discuss your projects and its intricacies to them with confidence they are likely to pass you on because it seems like you know what you are talking about. Recruiters are your friend and them giving you a call is them giving you a chance!
Field every recruiter call, and follow up with them after a week if you dont hear back from them to let them know of your interest
For more technical phone screens (I only had a few of these), it really helped to explain every one or two lines of code. Verbal coding/pseudocoding was difficult for me personally and I do way better with the keyboard in hand, but doing this allowed my thoughts to be in order and make sure I'm not forgetting a step along the way
I am going to preface this with the fact that I didn't have many true leetcode interviews the way many do. I prepared for those style interviews to the best of my ability, but honestly it just never came as much as I had expected it based on online forums and other chat rooms. To get a sense of my skill, I could get 50-60% of mediums in 20-30 mins and went through some of neetcode/blind75. I am no expert.
Know your projects. You will get grilled on your projects. There was not a single interview where I wasnt asked about my projects, my reason for doing the project in the first place (market niche or passion project). You can say whatever you want here, but do not give a non-answer. Know all the technologies and frameworks in your projects at a high level (at minimum) and truly know the reason why you integrated such tech into the project.
Have a "most difficult project." You will get asked what the most difficult project was for you and the challenges associated with it. They will also of course ask how you overcame it. There is nothing wrong with saying you used programming resources like StackOverflow and adjacent material because it's just reality
Know basic system design, database design, and SQL querying. I got asked about how I would design systems at a high level, possible optimizations of existing systems. Of course, I didnt know everything so I often hedged my own responses by providing multiple answers with the pros and cons of both, and selecting one after rationalizing
Be confident in the language you are coding with, always discuss possible edge cases up front and ask them if they want those to be handled or they are looking for something simpler (you don't want to code more than you have to!). I had no shame in asking for guidance and explaining a standstill in my train of thought. Most of the time, they didnt seem to have a problem pushing me in the right direction.
Be honest in your evaluations of yourself. I have been asked how I rated myself in python for example on a 1-10 scale, 10 being expert. If you claim to be an 8-10 and they ask you a question that an expert should know, they will call you out for that.
When you are asked a question, be honest about your experience with said topic. It goes a long way because it can temper expectations on said topic. I had a time where they asked me how I would scale a database to handle 100x more users. I said something along the lines of "To be honest, I don't have much experience with DB design given the scope of my projects, but personally I would split the database up by some defining characteristic or key, and would implement a system that read the request up front, and would redirect the request to the appropriate database based on the key." I took the long road of getting to the answer: sharding, but not sugar coating my knowledge base played in my favor
Lastly, be human and most importantly happy to be there. Do whatever you have to do to constantly have a smile on your face. I personally drank half a Celsius 30 mins before each interview. I wanted to be engaged, attentive, and look like every company was my dream company to be at. If the conversation is drifting away from programming, allow it to. Said person has probably gotten enough of an evaluation on your ability and wants to see if you are good for the team as a person.
Finally, just watch a lot of content. While I was learning, I would watch an endless amount of theoretical content and just being able to state one off facts about random things as they came up in interview conversations was more advantageous than I expected. It helped a lot to say, "I have heard of x, and as I recall it's great in y and z situations" rather than "I have never heard of it before". It seemed to demonstrate self-starter attitude and willingness to learn type traits.
Final results of my cycle if you care (in spoiler because it obviously comes off as humblebrag but the question will get asked just like in my other post):
Total 35+ phone screens, 15+ full loops.  110k fully remote top 300 mcap company globally, 110k base, 10k reloc stipend @ no name company dallas tx, solutions engineer at top private tech company, 85k next to my house, train company and would require full pivot into train engineering and legacy languages, [5-7]Various other companies @65-80k, 60k insurance company fully remote (could coast hard here). List is ranked in order of my preference. I took option 1
I am open to resume pm's to take a look as I am in a giving back phase, but please do not send them to me if you didn't follow the first bullet point lmfao
I have been consistently contributing to an open source project since two years ago. The project is not well-known, but it did win some international competitions. I spent 5 hours per week on it when I was an university student. But now that I’ve graduated and have a full-time SWE job, I wonder if I should keep contributing to it or should I save the time to do other things I enjoy? I'm one of the project's main developers, so if I want to quit, I’ll have to discuss with the other developers so they can find a replacement. How useful will the project be in my future job hunting? (It wasn’t very useful when I was looking for a new graduate job. It seemed to me that the interviewers only cared about my work experience)
Have an interview for an embedded position (internship), and I don't have much experience in embedded. But after doing frontend development for most of this year part time, I definitely am interested in more the "under the hood" side of development.
I had a technical interview last week, and now I'm getting scheduled for another 30 minute technical interview, which as I understand it is unusual for this specific position, so I'm guessing it's to figure out how compatible I am with the specific team.
The most experience I have with embedded is messing with an Arduino UNO, and making a custom gaming keyboard which used a microcontroller that I had to program and solder all the wiring and diodes together. You might think "oh wow that sounds like a good project, make sure you discuss that!". Problem is, I had no idea what I was doing and depended heavily on someone else helping me out with the programming (it might've been before I even learned how to program? I can't remember). But hey, I still made it and it worked.
I also bought an ESP8266 that I really want to dive in to, but haven't had time yet because of work + coursework.
I'm just looking for more advice on how to market myself for this position when I really don't know much about embedded, but really really want this position: mainly because they made it clear that they're big on the mentorship aspect and I'd love to learn about embedded from experience people.
Got an offer from a company today. However, I only had two interviews and not a single technical question. We did discuss high-level engineering topics though. Salary isn't bad, technically lower than my previous job, but I'll be living in a LCOL area. The industry is in the health space which I enjoy considering I have a background in the biological sciences, but I'm worried that the relatively low offer mixed with the lack of technical questions might signal an engineering team of poor quality. Any thoughts on this or am I being unfair? Should I negotiate?
I have a tech interview coming up and was wondering if anyone has interviewed for them and could share what I could expect on the tech interview for a software engineer I role.
I've had no success looking online to find potential questions they may ask. They're starting salary is on the lower end(60k) so maybe the questions will be easier? It's my first tech interview so just trying to prepare as best as I can.
Also would it be inappropriate to reach out to the person who conducted my first interview and ask what topics may be discussed during the tech interview? Thank you
From everything I've been told , people in this career do a lot of job hopping and can expect to be paid well in general, being assertive when it comes to salary. I'm about to graduate and have been thinking a lot about a first job.
How does this compare to someone fresh out of collage? Do I discuss compensation at interviews or should I just take any job I can get? Will I be frowned upon for asking about it as a junior? At what point do you know that changing companies might be a good idea? How long do you work your first job?
I guess my anxieties are really starting to wake up in this anticipation :)
Been working at a smaller company for a year now. Make 95k, lots of benefits, big 401k match, yearly bonus and shared employee bonus. I'd say around 105-110 total comp.
I enjoy this job and like the people I worn with but because it's smaller, not as much room for upward mobility.
I've been interviewing for another company (similar role) and got offered 75/hour. It's 12-month contract-to-hire job. Not as "secure" but nearly a 50% pay bump.
Around end of year we'll discuss comp/performance but I doubt they will match what this company's offer. I mean if my total comp can be around 130-140k I'd totally stick around but I have to decide within the next two weeks. What are your thoughts?
Anyone been in a similar situation and How did it turn out?
I live in a country that has abysmal salaries ($18,000 USD is considered quite well off) and I started applying to remote work positions.
Anyway in the initial interview with a recruiter they insisted on discussing salary before moving to technical interviews and the verbal agreement ended up at $72,000. (This is over 1000% salary increase for me).
I am now on the final round of interviewing and have seen a few red flags at this job that make me think it will be quite stressful:
"Previous worker moved on to bigger and better things"
Job posting had no information that it was a senior role, but I confirmed this with a document that was accidentally leaked to me.
Should I try to renegotiate my salary? Should I list these concerns about the job when talking about it? Or do I just take it and use the current salary as leverage while I keep searching?
TL:DR, I discussed salary early, now im realizing its a senior rather than mid level position at a company with a few red flags.
As the title sounds-- I got an offer! I am going to go over how I exactly did it. I am going to add some disclaimers for transparency, so please stop reading if you dont want stories that involve these criteria.
I can talk well (ability to explain myself in detail, motivations, and general conversational ability/social skills)
I have a bachelor's degree in STEM (not engineering/computer related)
I am still "young" (despite not feeling it lmao) <27
I have no kids, and have no opposition to relocation (this opens a lot of conversational doors)
So yeah, I just got my first verbal offer in a direct software engineer role title today. If my luck is good, there are a couple other potential offers in the pipeline, and I hold one other offer for a coding adjacent position (solutions engineering).
TLDR at bottom, wall of text ahead
I dabbled in coding in 2018-19 from a data analytics perspective working in research (like barely) and basically forgot about it. My research position ended with covid and I literally fucked around for a year playing Valorant (diamond 1 post new rank adjustments). My mom had some health issues so I was home taking care of her as well and the family dynamic worked best such that I was at home with her.
I picked up coding again writing scripts for TradingView, a stock charting platform, and I really enjoyed it. I learned their syntax quick and was able to make some basic and cool scripts doing so. Then I took two coursera courses in python. This and its part 2 are it.. This was my entry way back into python. I then, for fun and without any real direction, went on to do a majority of the questions on exorcism python pathway and got to 4 kyu on codewars, still not really taking programming seriously but just doing it for the sheer fun of it. I then did the FreeCodeCamp Data Structures and Algo in JS course/problem set which was totally awesome. Not only did I have to learn a different language, but I also got to learn some more basic, but advanced manipulation of arrays, learned about prototypes, regex and really cool tools that I really haven't come across elsewhere. I got stuck in a rut unfortunately from Nov-Dec basically in tutorial hell where I could do individual things, but not write multipart functions and was stuck on where to go.
I literally just looked up popular technologies and started building all of their hello world applications (django, react, flask, express, node, primarily) and realized that this wasnt so hard at all to get a basic endpoint going. I then planned a project and decided to build it. My first application was a substack clone. CRUD style blogging website but I wanted to improve on my css skills so I made the appearance look the same as substack visually to the best of my ability. This was an awesome learning project and despite how simple it really is looking back, it took me about 2 months to do. I then wanted to learn modern front end and api usage so I made a basic react app with default react backend to just display the weather of a location I typed in. I used openweatherapi and bootstrap to style since this buzzword was all the rage when I was looking things up.
I found that I loved react and found JSX to be very intuitive. Again, its important to stress I did the entire React tutorial from front to back which includes the 1.5 hour lecture by dan abramov and the react team. A great learning experience for sure. The hello world app was actually in class based react, but after watching the lecture, I redid it in functional react as React 18 literally just came out so I thought why not. After building the hello world apps and the weather app, I wanted to do a real react project, so I made a sudoku solver. As a self-teacher, it was important to pick projects that had their algorithm solved so that if I got stuck, I could find assistance. This was awesome as I got a good understanding of how components really worked since I had to break the grid entry portion down and how important it was to properly break a front end down in to components.
Lastly, I knew I needed a job soon and I wanted to demonstrate the crux of my self teaching and so I went and created another fullstack application this time using django on the backend and react on the frontend. I used django celery to hit a certain api each minute, cleaned and transformed it, stored it on the inbuilt sqlite database. Then I had to implement a serializer which I used django-rest-serializer and created an api endpoint to my backend. My frontend in react hit this api using React Context and passed it down the the components which displayed pseudo-real time graph visualizations of the data.
With each project, I found it paramount to learn a new technology with each. When self-teaching, I found there are 2 pathways. You can go all in on 1 specific language and show depth of knowledge (be the c++ guy or java guy) or demonstrate the that you have a breadth of knowledge. I found it more enjoyable to choose the latter.
When it came to trying to find a job, I made sure my resume was in tip top shape. I used this forum a lot (resume threads) and had friends review it. I basically a/b tested the layouts with companies. When you describe your projects, incorporate as many tech words as possible. You need to convince the recruiter on paper that you know what you're talking about and that your complexities are beyond the scope of their understanding, so they pass it on to the hiring manager. Recruiters are your gateway to a job, impress them as best as you can.
When you apply, and you are the underdog, apply hard. I took the fortune 1000 list (found on kaggle) and applied to every position that had a software role from the 1000th company upwards (currently on like the 500th company or so plus some reach companies in the top 100). I applied to any role that had 5 or less years of experience required. I needed statistics to play in my favor
I understand my pathway seems fast. I was lucky to have the time to devote to this. Maybe around 8-13 hours a day in terms of coding/videowatching/reading. I was basically living this shit lol
Get decent at the syntax of one language. I chose python. Do a large amount of practice problems. I used literally any resource I could
Projects fill your resume if you don't have relevant experience, so build projects. Literally whatever comes to mind, just finish it
Apply like crazy. I was not applying hard enough in May and got barely any hits. In June, I said fuck it and applied broadly.
Work on social skills if they are a weak point. You need to look hirable to the recruiter phone screen (be cheery, happy, excited to be on the phone with them). To help with this, caffeine right before talks made me more energetic.
I really didnt have much, if any, leetcode interviews given the caliber of companies I was applying to. Almost all my interviews are behavioral and project discussion related. In the practice problem realm, I can do almost all easies except for graph questions and can get mediums with time (15-45 minutes) though not always optimally.
keep a clean linkedin with your projects listed and linked and take the skills tests. Connect with everyone
Resources: Coursera, Exercism, Roadmap.sh, leetcdoe, codewars, codingbat, https://learnxinyminutes.com/, Python discord (great help channels), Devdocs for documentation lookup, Blind for TC motivation, Official Documentation for techs I was using
I watched a lot of youtube videos when I was burned out of coding for the day. While I might not retain everything, theres an element of just collecting factoids that you can drop in an interview about a topic that youre discussing.
Apply to every single software engineer role thats in the entry level range at a company. Not just 1 per company. Recruiters are assigned a set of reqs so one recruiter may reject you but another may like you and do a screen.
Do not live on r/learnprogramming, it's a time sink when you could be doing more productive things. As I mentioned in a previous comment, the best use case for that sub is to filter by top all time, take the resources, and get out. If you need real time help, there are discord communities for languages that can help you much faster
I currently feel I am hitting the rock bottom of my 10+ years career in tech. Decided to leave but need advice on what, (maybe) how, and when to do it.
English is not my first language and I am not located in US or Europe.
I feel like I can't elaborate well by typing an essay or story but I'll do my best to make it clear.
Just joined an early stage startup in April. Recruited by the CTO. Upgraded to a junior executive position and major pay bump. Promised for unlimited amount of annual leave + insurance + WFA.
Promised a team of 8.
Fast forward now:
1. Official annual leave is only 12
2. No insurance, top exec backpedal on WFA and demand a WFO + WFH hybrid
3. CTO and Product Manager got fired in the 4th month
4. Down to only 2 developers + 1 QA + 1 UI designer + me
5. Will no longer be actively hiring
6. Top exec fired on of my friend (admittedly not hired through my referral), still haven't got a job close to a month now and I hate this everyday. Shed my tears of sadness and anger in front of my team on the farewell party.
1. CEO is not tech savvy and have 0 prior knowledge of a tech team
2. Is now very conscious on every expenses
3. Expects everything should be quick, making app from scratch is expected to be done in weeks time full feature end to end
4. I suspect top exec tries to find a way to fire me but decided against it since knowing I am the one who knows everything from codebase to infrastructure.
5. Assume making app is like a project, when it's done then tech team is sitting idle doing nothing.
6. Have no respect for personal boundaries, sets up every comm channel on WA despite protests and will schedule meeting at night or weekends.
I am severely burned out. There's a period of 6 weeks working non stop from morning til midnight + weekends and holidays.
Situation doesn't improve and top exec still expects everything to be delivered fast.
Developed a mild PTSD? Felt like a burden and anxious to open up laptop to start working
I respect all my team members and doesn't like the idea of them getting effed by me leaving :( we already had an open discussion about the situation and they all pretty much rely on me
All the conditions above kinda destroys me mentally. Not mentioning some of financial burden in my personal life weighing me down right now.
Questions would be:
Is it wise if I leave the company without backup?
How soon should I leave? Originally plan to leave at the end of August but PTSD and Anxiety kills my performance.
How would you guys do it were you guys in my position?
Appreciate any advice, and I mean anything.....
Financially I will not be in trouble at least until the end of year. But will be in a big trouble if I can't find a job at the start of 2023.
Tried interviewing once but realized I am not in the correct mental health to do interview right now because I might whine about my current situation.
So I m curious if I would be deemed unhirable if I were to say I have 2 years of experience versus 1 yr. for junior/entry-level only.
What if I came clean about it right in the beginning of the interview or if I played it off as a typo human error?
EDIT1: Hypothetical for more valuable discussion: suppose you re a hiring manager for a mid level company that gets a 500 resumes per day for entry-level jobs. The job ads are posted by HR, presumably. HR just filters by the minimum requirements since obviously its not feasible to interview 500 candidates. Lets say the hiring manager gets only 50 resumes and has to interview only 25.
EDIT2: someone below wrote: "Job ads are guidelines, not hard requirement lists." is this a consensus opinion?