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How To Get and Love Your First Rails Job

How To Get and Love Your First Rails Job

Halfway through a dev bootcamp? Straight out of college with a CS degree? Hacking away at Hartl after your day job? Now what?

With articles about how employable you are and how much money you can make printed daily, it can be hard to stay focused on the most important tangibles – the job search, interview readiness, and your early career goals.

In this talk, we’ll cover how to prepare yourself and your projects for the interview process, and how to adequately vet the companies interested in you, allowing you to not only secure a rails job, but one that you love.


Molly Morgan Black

May 06, 2016

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  1. How to Get & Love Your First Rails Job

  2. Molly Morgan Black

  3. How to Choose a Job You Will Love How to

    Be a Standout Candidate
  4. How to be a Standout Candidate

  5. Crush the Sample Project Crush The Sample Project

  6. Choose a project that excites you. 1

  7. Project Foundation • A technical problem of interest • A

    skill you want to hone • A project that aligns with professional aspirations or personal interests
  8. Technical Interest + Personal Interest

  9. Why did you choose this project?

  10. What problems did you encounter / solve?

  11. Put effort into your whole project. 2

  12. – Junior Backend Developer without a Job “I’m not going

    to waste my time styling, when I don’t even want to be a front-end developer.”
  13. - You are willing to take on a variety of

    different assignments - You take pride in your work (no matter what you’re working on). - You are excited to learn many aspects of your craft.
  14. Consider the edge cases. 3

  15. Your users will not behave as expected.

  16. Ask your friends to use your app. They will find

    the bugs.
  17. Understand every line of code in your project. 4

  18. Group Projects Stack Overflow Online Tutorials Sample Projects

  19. That’s okay! • Discuss with your group • Re-read that

    Stack Overflow post • Re-watch tutorial • Play with code in the rails console
  20. You’re ready to present your project when you can explain

    your whole project.
  21. Refactor, refactor, refactor. 5

  22. If you find your code hard to read, it is

    hard to read.
  23. Are my methods’ names clear and descriptive?

  24. Do each of my methods have one explicit responsibility?

  25. Is my mark up (mostly) logic free?

  26. Is my code comment free?

  27. Write tests! 6

  28. Sure, your tests will impress interviewers.

  29. Tests will save you.

  30. None
  31. Do the Networking

  32. Yes, you have to network. 1

  33. Meet ups Industry Parties Hack Nights Volunteer Opportunties

  34. No, you don’t have to ask everyone you meet for

    a job. 2
  35. Just be yourself.

  36. Make real relationships. 3

  37. Love a company? Reach out directly.

  38. None
  39. This is your first impression. Make it count you. 1

  40. – Human or Robot? “I’m so excited to be applying

    for the position of Junior Rails Developer at Life.io. I feel that my past experience and unique skill set are perfectly suited for this exciting opportunity.”
  41. Standout. 2

  42. Read it out loud. 3

  43. Never copy and paste. Never copy and paste. 4

  44. If you need to copy and paste, you are applying

    to too many jobs.
  45. I’m so excited to be applying for the position of

    Nicki Minaj Backup Dancer at Taylor Swift, Inc.
  46. Get a proofreder. 5

  47. A typo in a cover letter is as bad as

    a typo in your code.
  48. Interview Confidently

  49. Don’t sweat the technical. (Even though I know you will.)

  50. Technical Interview Formats • Questions about your sample project •

    Define a term / principle / design pattern • Solve a whiteboard problem • Pair programming • Take home assignment
  51. Vocalize your thought process.

  52. Be okay with not knowing and excited to learn more.

  53. It’s all about building report.

  54. Sell your past experience. Yes, it’s relevant. 2

  55. Food Server = User Experience Know How

  56. Carpenter / Construction = True Maker

  57. Writer / Editor = Beautiful Code

  58. How to Choose a Job You Will Love

  59. Narrow your search.

  60. What problems am I interested in solving?

  61. Do I want to wear many hats or have fewer,

    more well- defined responsibilities?
  62. Do I want to gain breadth or depth of knowledge

    as a junior developer?
  63. Can I succeed in a remote position, or would I

    rather work onsite?
  64. Interview potential companies as thoroughly as they interview you.

  65. Code Quality 1

  66. How does your company manage technical debt?

  67. What does the current code coverage look like?

  68. What is the code review process?

  69. Can you tell me about a problem your team ran

    into recently and how it was solved?
  70. Could I get a demo of the codebase?

  71. Growth Opportunities 2

  72. How does your company foster a learning culture for its

  73. Has this team of developers been involved with mentoring juniors

    in the past?
  74. The Work 3

  75. What kind of work do you envision me doing in

    the first 3 months, 6 months, year?
  76. Will I work primarily alone, on a small team, with

    a mentor?
  77. Will I help with feature planning?

  78. Learning Environment 4

  79. How do you feel leaving the interview?

  80. Did you see potential for a mentoring relationship?

  81. Weigh your offers.

  82. Considering the Perks 1

  83. Meaningful Perks • Vacation days • Sick days • Parental

    Leave • Flexible work schedule • Option to work from home
  84. Does this company treat its employees like human beings?

  85. Does this company trust its employees?

  86. Ask for the employee handbook!

  87. Superficial Perks • Free food / drinks • Beer on

    tap • Ping pong • “Hip” office stuff (beanbag chairs?)
  88. Considering the Monies 2

  89. *A Sensitive Aside

  90. Happiness List 1. Being treated like a human adult 2.

    Mentorship and learning opportunities 3. Coding culture 4. Excitement about work 5. Monies 6. Ping Pong
  91. None
  92. Molly Morgan Black @mollymoblack @_lifeio