Jen’s Ten: Top 10 Tips for Tech Resumes

Welcome to the first installment of ‘Jen’s Ten’, where I will be sharing top tips on career-related topics!

At this point in the semester, you’ve returned to campus, made it through your first couple of week of classes, and maybe you’re still adjusting to your busy schedule. You’re starting to notice programs being offered through our office and you see friends apply and interview for summer or full-time opportunities. You think, ‘Oh man, I need to start doing that too… but where do I start?!’ Well, you’re reading this post, so I assure you, you’re already on the right path 😀

Remember that resume you created back during freshmen year in CDI 101? Time to dust it off and update so you can start applying to exciting opportunities on BentleyLink and beyond! In collaboration with several successful CIS alumni and current students, I have compiled a list of top 10 things to consider when applying to tech-related roles. These tips are from professionals in this industry and go well beyond the basic behavioral suggestions you learned years ago.

If you are seeking a tech internship or job, take a peek below and be sure to make necessary adjustments to your own resume so it will be top of mind to any recruiter! Be sure to bring updated version to the Career Fair on 2/7/18 and keep checking BentleyLink for the most recent job postings and programs!

Top 10 Tips for Tech Resumes:

  1. Figure out your tech passion, CIS allows you to go in multiple directions in technology be it in developing software or helping traditional companies with their IT function ie future CIO.  Your resume should reflect that passion.
  2. Quantify your work experience as much as possible. Tech companies are looking for tangible results. How much did you save the company? How large was the team you worked with? How large was the client base you were serving? This quantification should also be done for your activities and leadership positions, not just your job experiences
  3. Include a section on your resume that highlights any computer/technical skills you may have. This could include anything from the Microsoft Office product suite that you use every day (Word, Outlook, Excel, etc.) to more complex skills like Java or SQL.
  4. When writing about tech skills include your proficiency – novice, intermediate and advanced. Careful not to oversell your skill set, I see a lot of students put a technical skill on their resume such as SQL, but then I ask them a basic SQL question during the interview and they can’t answer it.
  5. If you include any specific tech terms be sure to know how to speak about them at length, do not include anything on your resume you have just heard about, but are not actually familiar with
  6. Include any relevant coursework that you have taken throughout your years at Bentley. It’s always a great idea to include the more technical courses like CS180/280, CS150/350, and any math or data science courses, depending on the role you are applying for. However it’s equally as important to include business oriented courses such as (the infamous) GB320 or GB410. These courses show that you have the ability to collaborate and communicate effectively with others on developing a complex deliverable integrated from multiple sources.
  7. Be sure to include any leadership positions you have held throughout college, whether that be as part of a sports team, Greek Life, clubs, Service Learning, etc. Although some of these may not be technology related per say, they exemplify that you are able to take charge, and make important decisions for a body of people larger than yourself. This is an important skill that will develop throughout your career, and applies to not only the tech industry but all aspects of the professional world.
  8. Study abroad experiences are also very important to include on resumes. Any technology related coursework that was taken while abroad goes for brownie points as well, and looks amazing when applying for technology roles. It shows you have a large capacity for learning, as you were immersing yourself in a completely new culture and perhaps even taking this course in another language. This also shows that you are willing to take risks and put yourself out there, which can be extremely valuable in the tech industry, and makes for interesting talking points during interviews as well.
  9. Keep up with the trends, Digital technology is the big trendy word right now, so be aware of the trend and have a perspective on it.  Other key areas include Cybersecurity, AI, RPA, and blockchain.
  10. Highlight your ability to communicate about technology. Whichever technology career path you choose, whether that be tech consulting, software development, business analysis, etc. requires the ability to communicate about technology in a way that maybe less technical colleagues can understand. In the technology industry is it crucial to not only have knowledge of the technical items but to also be able to communicate about technology effectively and in a professional manner as well.

 

A special thanks to those that shared their insight for this post:

Chris Wetmore, RSM- Bentley Alum CIS 2004, MBA 2011

Casey Hult, Protiviti- Bentley Alum CIS 2017

Luca Guevara Zamora- Current Bentley Student, CIS 2019

 

By Jennifer Graham
Jennifer Graham Senior Assistant Director, Pulsifer Undergraduate Career Development Center Jennifer Graham