Tag Archives: career advice

Advice from the Experts: Three Skills for Software Developers

This Post was written by Darcy Uustal
Date posted: March 20, 2018

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Today, there are countless skills and specializations for technical professions. Because of this, it’s important to be aware of what you should know. Every profession has those core skills that are must-knows in order to be successful. In fact, it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been in the business. Without a doubt, it’s just as important for seasoned software developers to stay current as it is for those just starting out.

After scouring the Internet for blogs from fellow software developers, I’ve outlined three concepts that all software developers need to know, and know well:

Cloud Computing
Software developers have turned to cloud computing services for a number of reasons. Mainly, because it has changed the way we execute large-scale web applications. To illustrate, there are many positives to the elasticity and scalability of testing environments that cloud computing services provide. Many services offer the option to generate synthetic test data, and more of the environment build is automated. Additionally, you no longer need change requests. An internal system limits you to the hardware you have. By contrast, cloud computing speeds up projects and you pay on demand, meaning, you pay as you go so you’re only purchasing what you’re actually using.

There are multiple facets of cloud computing, all of which any software developer should understand inside and out. For more specific explanations on these types of cloud computing, check out this article from InfoWorld:

  1. SaaS – software as a service
  2. IaaS – infrastructure as a service
  3. PaaS – platform as a service
  4. FaaS – functions as a service
  5. Private cloud
  6. Hybrid cloud
  7. Public APIs – application programming interfaces
  8. iPaaS – integration platform as a service
  9. IDaaS – identity as a service
  10. Collaboration platforms
  11. Vertical clouds

Least Privilege
Next up, security. In regards to security, developers should understand that users only need access to do their job and nothing more. The Simple Programmer outlines this concept, well, simply:

For instance, is your application connecting to a database using an account that has superuser access, such as dbo in SQL Server? This can open you up to exploitation. If your application has a SQL injection vulnerability and it is exploited, the attacker could drop tables and do all sorts of nasty stuff to your application’s database or hop to another application’s tables.

A more secure approach would be to create an ID just for your application (often referred to as a service account) and only grant the permission to that ID absolutely needed by your application to do its work. If your application’s ID has only read-and-write access, then your tables won’t be destroyed (or worse yet, another application’s tables) if the worst happens.

Scripting
A script consists of a series of commands within a file that doesn’t require any compiling in order to execute. Python, Perl, JavaScript, or PHP are some of the languages which support scripts. Scripting is helpful with automating the compiling of code and in testing. Software developer, Ryan Chadwick, concisely explains a Bash script on his website, Ryan’s Tutorials:

A Bash script is a plain text file which contains a series of commands. These commands are a mixture of commands we would normally type ourselves on the command line (such as ls or cp for example) and commands we could type on the command line but generally wouldn’t (you’ll discover these over the next few pages). An important point to remember though is:

Anything you can run normally on the command line can be put into a script and it will do exactly the same thing. Similarly, anything you can put into a script can also be run normally on the command line and it will do exactly the same thing.

What else would you add to our list? Let us know on LinkedIn and Twitter!

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Common Questions To Expect in your Next Interview

This Post was written by Bridge Technical Talent
Date posted: August 4, 2017

Yes, job interviews can be nerve racking, especially when you’re anticipating the difficult questions. But, you can prepare several ways. You can research the company, review your skills, refresh your knowledge of technical programs and you can also anticipate some of the questions they’ll be asking. Here are three common interview questions and because we have your back …. a few tips on how to approach answering them:

Why are you seeking to leave your current position?
Avoid sounding too negative whenever your job history comes up. Now is not the time to vent all your frustrations about your previous employer. Instead, use this as an opportunity to outline what goals you have for your career path. Maybe you want to leave your current role because you feel that you have not been able to grow professionally as much as you would like. Take this negative and turn it into a chance to talk about the types of projects you want to be involved in. Let them know you are looking for a job that gives you room to advance.

What is your greatest weakness?
Do not answer with something that sounds more like a strength, such as “I’m a perfectionist.” This is overused and the interviewees will appreciate a more thoughtful, honest answer. Whatever you do choose to share, put a positive spin on it. Elaborate on what you are doing to break a bad habit or explain how you have taken the time to recognize your weaknesses.

Do you prefer working alone or on a team?
While this question seems simple enough, it can be tricky. If you answer that you prefer teams, you don’t want to send the message that you aren’t confident in your skills when functioning independently. If you prefer solo work, your interviewers may translate that into you not being able to work well with others. Let them know that you are open to both styles, if that’s true for you. Otherwise, be honest with your preference. Doing so will help you better determine if you are the right fit for the job.

Feel like you could use a little more interview prep? Here are some guides to help you ace the interview and make a positive impression during the job hunt process.

Tweet us your questions, follow us on LinkedIn, and check out active job openings on our website.

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How to Make a Positive Impression at Your New Job

This Post was written by Bridge Technical Talent
Date posted: June 27, 2017

                                                            Image courtesy of Today

Pop the champagne! You finally landed that job you’ve been interviewing for, and you’re about to start your first day. You know that the key to a successful transition is demonstrating quality, thoughtful work, but so is making a positive impression with your new coworkers. After all, you’ll be working with them every day. How do you make a positive impression in a new job?

First impressions in the workplace are just as lasting as they are during interviews, so be cognizant of the impression you give off. People will be more likely to trust you, respect you, and be friendly to you if you get  started on the right foot. Here are seven tips to make a positive impression in your new work culture:

Arrive early, stay later when possible
You don’t want to be ‘that guy’ who always walks in late and is constantly finding excuses to leave the office an hour early. For the most part, people tend to pick up on your attendance habits within the first few days. You might find yourself in the occasional moment when you cannot help but be late. Being mindful of this will show those around you that you are responsible and you can handle simple expectations such as punctuality. Also, you are more likely to be included in office coffee runs or dinner after work if you’re present – a great way to start building those relationships.

Dress to impress
No one is going to take you seriously if you show up to work in a wrinkled blazer, crooked tie, and ankle socks. Having a clean overall appearance will enhance your professionalism. Ultimately, this leaves a more positive impression on your office peers. You don’t need break-the-bank designer suits, but make sure your clothes fit you properly, fit the vibe of the office culture and are dry cleaned every once in awhile.

Respect seniority
No one likes a wise guy. It’s great to feel confident in your new role, but remember to show the proper respect to veterans in the office, especially when it comes to the people you report to. Learn from them and follow the decisions made by your superiors. Ask questions respectfully when you don’t understand a task you’ve been given.

Keep personal life separate from work
As time goes on you will get to know your coworkers better, but to start it is generally better to avoid mixing work and personal life. Share enough about yourself to start cultivating meaningful relationships, but don’t go overboard.  If you have a personal matter to attend to, make sure to do it quickly and quietly, or away from the office.

Take initiative
Don’t be afraid to stick your hand out first for a handshake, propose project ideas, or ask your peers questions. Asking questions shows you’re trying to learn. Engaging with your work will show others that you are eager to be there. Just remember, no one has ever been successful by sitting back and waiting for someone else to make a move.

Make an effort to get along with your colleagues
You’re at work to do work, but that doesn’t mean you should only keep to yourself. It helps to get along with the people around you. Ask if anyone needs an extra set of hands on any of their projects. Offer favors like covering for someone while they are out of the office, and be an active participant in meetings. If there’s an office gathering after work, try to go to those to make stronger connections.

Have a positive attitude
As an organization, you and your team are striving toward a common goal. It is important to always stay positive even in challenging moments, because it’ll help everyone to move forward. In addition, having a ‘can do’ mentality gives off positive vibes, which will only help you and those around you.

Being the ‘new guy’ has its challenges. If you embrace it the right way, you’ll integrate into the office culture before you know it. Present yourself in a way that is positive and helpful from the beginning. You’ll definitely have an easier time getting along with your team or co-workers.

Making the right impression at your new job can make your adjustment to your new role an easier transition. What are some things you keep in mind when entering new work environments? Let us know on Twitter and follow us on LinkedIn to see open tech roles that might be a great fit for you.

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The Best Shortcuts: How to Save Time During Your Job Search

This Post was written by Bridge Technical Talent
Date posted: February 24, 2017

Whether you’re about to graduate or you’re looking for a new challenge in your career, finding the time to concentrate on your job search can be overwhelming. People often say that looking for work is a full-time job in itself (it is!), and it’s easy to become distracted with other tasks at hand. This is why optimizing your time management during your job search is an important (but simple!) skill to master. Follow these easy steps:

Start with lists
Never underestimate an old fashioned list. Start out by writing down your vision for your future career as well as your non-negotiables: do you want to relocate? Are you looking to stay in the same field or make a change? When do you hope to start in a new position? Include short and long term goals and be specific about what you’re going to do to achieve them. Sticking to a list makes it easier to stay on track and avoid distractions. Cross off items as you go. Progress!

Networking
The first step and easiest way to save time during your job search is to leverage your existing network. Start by reaching out to your contacts through LinkedIn, email, or a phone call and mention that you’re in the market for a new job. Once you’ve done that, move on to establishing new connections online by looking for jobs in places you might not expect, like Twitter, Facebook groups, or job forums.

Treat the search itself like a job
Wake up early, have a proper breakfast, and get started searching. Even if you can’t dedicate the traditional 9-5 work day to your search, set aside dedicated time every day. Wake up 30 min earlier than usual, or skip watching those re-runs and spend time after dinner.

Divide your time between research and in-person networking
Don’t underestimate the power of face to face networking. Start organizing your time by separating your online search and in-person meetings. Consider using the weekend to search for jobs online and save the weekdays for attending networking events. Even if you don’t end up finding a job through your in-person efforts, making new connections and meeting industry leaders is worth the time and energy.

If you’re unemployed, find ways to fill your time
Employers like to see that you stay active during gaps in your resume. If you can find something relevant to your profession, fantastic! If you can’t, focus on volunteer opportunities in your area. This is a great way to become more active in your community and you never know what types of connections you could make along the way.

Don’t multitask
When you’re looking for jobs, do just that: look for jobs. Put away your phone and close your inbox. Avoid answering emails or thinking about what groceries you need to pick up and focus on the task at hand. Make sure any tabs you have open are relevant to your search and close the ones that may be distracting.
Want to expedite your job search? Contact one of our recruiters. Follow us on Twitter for more career advice and explore our open jobs.

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