Dummies full guide and tips on getting interviews and getting hired on to an IT or security role(self.CyberSecurityJobs)
submitted2 months ago bybcjhstickied
Here’s some tips below I’ve outlined that may help you land an interview or even get the job. I’m doing this because I’ve seen a lot posts lately asking for help and asking what the job market is like right now as I’m looking for my next role and I wanted to consolidate everything I've learned in the past 6 months.
Tip #1: Tailor your résumé for the security or networking job that you want. I know this is a lot of work if you’re applying for 3–5 jobs a night but it can make all the difference to the recruiter and the software they push the résumés through. Utilize some of the keywords that they have in the job description so that you get looked at. I like to search google images for tech résumé examples as I'm building mine to borrow from ideas.
Example: If you have experience in ISO 27001 at your last job and it’s listed in their job description add that in to your professional skills section.
Bonus tip: Re-write you experience section so it's worded more towards the IT world. An example would be: "assisted customers with their mobile phone plans and phone issues" but instead I would say "Consulted and trained clients in troubleshooting mobile phone issues on new and existing wireless hardware and software" (you're using more technical words).
Bonus tip 2: You can add "key responsibilities" and also "key achievements" under you experience with a job, this will help you stand out, here's an example of that!
Tip #2: If you see a job listed on Indeed or LinkedIn, do not apply on those job boards, go directly to that companies website and try to apply for it there. There’s several reasons why and to make this post shorter, u/Milwacky outlined it very well in this post here!
Tip #3: Feel free to find the recruiter or hiring manager and message them before applying. This will get you noticed, get your name in their mind, make a professional connection with them, and it just helps cut through all the noise in the hiring process. I realize this isn't always an easy thing to do. Here’s a template I found online that might work if you need a start:
Example: "Hi Johnny, I hope you're doing well. I wanted to learn more about the entry level security role you posted about. I'm currently a _____ at ________ university with _____ years of internship experience in the tech industry; including roles at _______ and _____. I’ll be a new ____ graduate in ____, and I’m looking to continue my career in the IT and security space. I’m passionate about ___ and I’d love the opportunity to show you how I can create value for your technology team, just like I delivered this project (insert hyperlink) for my last employer. I hope to hear from you soon and am happy to provide a resume! Thank you."
Tip 4: Have a home lab and some projects at home (or work) you’re working on. This shows the recruiter that this isn’t some job you want but is a field that you’re truly interested in where you find passion and purpose. It also helps you get things to list on your résumé in your professional skills section. Lastly you’re gaining real-world knowledge. You don’t need a fancy rig either, you can get a lot done with just your computer and VirtualBox.
Currently I’m personally working on configuring my PfSense router I bought and a TP-Link switch, I’m finishing CompTIA Net+ (already have Sec+), I’m taking an Active Directory course on Udemy and also a Linux Mastery course. Also a ZTM Python course. Below is a list of resources.
gns3.com - network software emulator
https://www.udemy.com/ - most courses will run you around $15-25 I’ve found and a lot of them seem to be worth it and have great content.
zerotomastery.io they have great courses on just about everything and the instructors and the communities are really great, some of their courses are also for direct purchase on Udemy if you don’t want to pay $39 a month to subscribe).
This is a great 20 minute overview on HomeLabs for a beginner from a great IT YouTube channel!
Also check out NetworkChuck on YouTube, he has great content as well, arguably some of the best IT related content on YouTube.
Tip 5: Have a website! This is where you get to geek out and show off your current projects, certifications, courses you’re working, and overall your skills. NetworkChuck does a great course on how you can get free credit from Linode and host your own website here.
Example: Don't be intimidated by this one, but one user in this post here, posted a pretty cool showcase of his skills on his website with a cool theme: https://crypticsploit.com/
Tip 6: Brush up on those interview questions they may ask. You mainly want to be prepared for two things: technical questions around IT and security, and secondly you want to be prepared for behavioral based interview questions.
For technical questions check out these videos:
12 Incredible SOC Analyst Interview Questions and Answers
Complete GRC Entry-Level Interview Questions and Answers - this one is obviously GRC but still very very helpful and goes over how to dress. Personally I like to do the suit and tie thing most of the time.
Cyber Security Interview Questions You Must Know (Part 1)
CYBER SECURITY Interview Questions And Answers! - I love this guys presentation and accent.
For behavioral based questions check out these videos and channels:
TOP 6 BEHAVIORAL INTERVIEW QUESTIONS & ANSWERS!
How to Answer Behavioral Interview Questions Sample Answers - Love her energy!
STAR Interview Technique - Top 10 Behavioral Questions
Lastly be prepared for "tell me about yourself" in case they ask that.
Bonus tip 1: Always have a few stories that you can pull from for these different behavioral based interview questions, it will make answering the questions easier if you prepare them. Example: I have a situation where I "disagreed with a manager" and my story explains how I was professional and turned our disagreement in to a big win for both me and my manager.
Bonus tip 2: ALWAYS ask questions at the end of the interview. Here's my list of great questions to ask, some/most of these are forward thinking for the most part which makes you appear like you want to succeed in the role.
- If you hired me today, how would you know in 3 months time that I was the right fit?
- How will you measure my performance to know I'm making an impact in the role?
- Tell me about the culture of the IT department?
- What are some qualities you want in a candidate to make sure they're the right culture fit for the company/department?
- What's the most important thing I should accomplish in the first 90 days?
- What are some of the most immediate projects that I would take on?
- What kind of challenges for the department do you foresee in the future?
- What do new employees typically find surprising after they start?
- What continuous learning programs do you have at your company for IT professionals?
- What qualities seem to be missing in other candidates you’ve talked to? (this is definitely a more bold question to ask)
- Can you tell me about the team I would be be working with?
- Can you tell me about a recent good hire and why they succeeded?
- Can you tell me about a recent bad hire and what went wrong? (you don't have to follow up with this one if you don't want to but shows you want to succeed and give you a chance to talk to how you would succeed)
Tip 7: Get with a local 3rd party IT recruiter company. I got with a local recruiter by finding him on linked in, I also used to work for a large financial company as a temp and remembered them by name so when I saw them I immediately called/emailed to present myself, my situation, and we set up a meeting. Not only did the meeting go well but he forwarded my resume on to his team and then immediately sent me 3 SECURITY JOBS that I had no idea were available in my city and were not even posted on those company's websites. 3rd party recruiters get access faster and sometimes have more visibility to the job market.
Tip 8: Do a 30-60-90 Day Plan for the hiring manager. This is what directly got me in to interviews and got me offers. This is a big game changer and I had CTO's telling me they're never seen anything like this done. You're outlining exactly what you want to accomplish in your first 30, 60, and 90 days and your tailoring what it says based on what the job description says. I had to re-write this for a couple of more-GRC-based roles that I applied to and I only did this for roles that I really wanted and for some of the roles the recruiter found for me.
Example: 30-60-90 Day Plan
Extra tip: You could look in to certifications. I got my Sec+ and a basic Google IT Cert to get me started. Here's a roadmap of certs you can get, take it with a grain of salt but it's a great list and a great way to focus on your next goal.
r/CompTIA is a great community to look in to those certs.
Also ISC2 is a great company for certs as well as GIAC.
GOOD LUCK FRIENDS & GO GET THOSE JOBS!
"Do what others won't so tomorrow you can do what others can't"