My Job Hunt - How I Ended Up At Apple01 Feb 2010
I started working for Apple in their iTunes Store division on December 14th 2009. It's been a great 6 weeks so far and I look forward to a long and interesting future here at Apple.
Considering the state of the economy and job market I consider myself blessed to have gotten such a great new job - but I worked hard in my hunt and thought it might be of use or interest to others what it took to find a new job.
So, my job hunt "by the numbers" ...
Time on Hunt
14 weeks (4 1/2 months)
August 11th to November 18th
Job Boards Used
Dice, TheLadder, Monster, Jobirn, Indeed, CyberCoders, SimplyHired
Cost (in money, not time)
$700 on resume
expenses that weren't reimbursed during interviews I traveled to
Friends or Colleagues Notified
- 6 (It was a private affair for the first 3/4s of the search)
Cities I Looked At
Virtually anywhere in the US with a big city ....
In particular I was pursuing cities in the following order...
- Denver (cause that's where I lived and own a home)
- Las Vegas
- Southern California
- Northern California
I considered East Coast and that direction (New York, Virginia, DC, Chicago etc) after finding opportunities out there.
*Jobs Applied or Responded To *
- 59 or more not counting the many emails I received and ignored outright
Companies Who Ignored Me
- 30+ whom I never heard from even after attempted followups
Source of Leads (for those 6)
2 - recruiter found my resume on a job board and contacted me
1 - I responded to a posting on a job board
2 - I submitted to job postings directly on the company site
1 - friend referred me to a job at his company after seeing me post on LinkedIn that I was looking (in the last 1/4 of my search when I made it public)
Number of Engineers that Interviewed Me at Those 6 Companies
- 12 at one company, 10 at another
Flights to Onsite Interviews
- San Francisco
- Carlsbad (San Diego County)
Rejections After Advanced Interviews
All in all it was a great experience. I learned a lot about myself, my worth, what I'm interested in and what opportunities are out there for me.
I had been at Etilize for 7 1/2 years and NEVER gotten a job via a resume before, so this was a significant experience for me to go "out of the blue" searching for a job and get one without having connections before hand.
A few things that I found significant in the process:
1) Get a Professional Resume
Paying for a professional resume writer to redo my resume made a HUGE difference. It made me feel much more confident about sending it off, but I also got much better feedback and callbacks once I began using it. It was completely worth the money and I'd recommend it to anybody serious about their job hunt.
As for the high cost -- don't go cheap is my opinion. Think about how long it takes to do a good job, the hourly rate you want to be paid and you'll see that it's impossible to have a proper job for $150 - which you'll see advertised. I paid $700 and it was deserved.
2) It Takes Time
Plan for it to take longer than you want or expect. It all takes time.
The questions I was asked are things that NEVER get asked or come up in the "real world" and are things I'd typically Google.
Sometimes that's a valid answer ... "I'd Google that" ... but it won't get you far on most interviews.
I had to dust off my understanding on a lot of computer science theory, algorithms, data structures, and other such things. In fact, the one major set of interviews I went through and ultimately got rejected from was the first series I went through and I believe 3 things caused the rejection (not my lack of skill):
a) questions about things I hadn't studied (and studied thereafter and was prepared for in subsequent interviews)
b) I was over-dressed ... a suit and tie for an engineering position set the wrong tone
c) I was not myself and stressed (this was more to do with the fact that it was my first real interviews in a decade ... ok, ever...)
It was really frustrating at times and absolutely exhilarating at others ... a real roller-coaster all the way through. By the end though I had a better sense of value and who I am and an exciting new career path.
Good luck to anyone else reading this and doing their own search!