You’re nearing the end of your time as an apprentice with The Software Guild, and you’re ready to move on to your exciting new career. Where do you start? Before you can discuss your qualifications with employers or send your qualifications to businesses, you need to create an easy-to-read resume and understand how to catch a hiring manager’s attention with a well-crafted cover letter. Furthermore, once you do land an interview, you’ll need to know how to impress the interviewer.

There are plenty of samples of resumes all over the internet. The trick is finding one that highlights your best qualities and qualifications. Did you have awesome internships and jobs before your bootcamp entry? Make sure to include those, even if they aren’t industry-relevant. References can go a long way, as can any assistance you may have provided to furthering the company. If you have little job experience but feel your skills should be highlighted, then search for “skills resume” to see how to spotlight your favorable aspects.

When you find a job you feel would be a great fit, always try to submit a cover letter. If you need to email, fax or mail separately, do so. A cover letter is just another way to persuade a potential employer to consider you for a position. It’s the time you get to tell the hiring manager exactly why you should be offered this job and what you can bring to the company. Be sure to scour the job posting for keywords and phrases that you can incorporate into your cover letter and resume. For example, if a job posting says, “Need to be proficient in website design and maintenance,” be sure to mention “extensive experience in designing and maintaining websites” (or something similar) if you possess those qualifications.

Another important aspect of getting into the career you desire is networking. Knowing people from all different parts of your industry will be extremely helpful if you want to move to a brand new company or a different department within your area. These relationships can also lead to some fantastic advice or insider information you wouldn’t be able to find elsewhere. During your time in The Software Guild, take the time to get to know who is in your cohort — you never know who you could assist or who could help you in the future!

One way to expand your networking skills is to boost your LinkedIn profile. Don’t have a LinkedIn profile? Make one! LinkedIn is a digital professional network with millions of members all around the world. You can look for jobs, post your resume and keep people updated with your current job status as well as what you’re looking for in a position. It’s also a great way to keep in contact with coworkers from your previous positions as well as connect with new acquaintances. Most every professional you meet today will have a LinkedIn profile; it’s a tool you can (and should) utilize as well.

If you already have a LinkedIn profile, make sure to keep your profile updated, follow important people in your field and keep a professional profile picture. Maintaining a list of your skills, certifications and experience is also important. Be sure to include your time at The Software Guild! The skills you’ve gained through the program are extremely marketable.

As a Software Guild apprentice, you are supported throughout the entirety of your time with the program. This includes your time finding a job and during your career, when having a network of Guildies and industry professionals can be very helpful. Near the end of your cohort time, you will have the opportunity to meet with potential employers to see if there are any job opportunities that would be a good fit for you and your possible employer.

Coding bootcamps such as The Software Guild offer an outcomes-focused, intensive learning environment for those interested in programming careers.