You may have heard that “looking for a job is a full-time job”, right? If you have been working diligently on your search, you may know from experience that the saying is very true. Here at VanHack we have a team of specialists and an amazing platform to help you advance your career, but the true hero of this quest is you. Today we want to tell you everything you should do to be successful at VanHack. How to be proactive in your search, how to maximize your chances, and how to do everything in your power to showcase your talents, experience, and skills.

We work hard on connecting the best candidates to the best opportunities, and we have many services to assist tech talents in the hiring and relocating processes. So, while we can assure you that we are doing our best to help you, everything else is up to you. Keep in mind our role here is to provide you with tools, resources, and information, so the more we know about you, the easier it is for us to help you find the best fit.

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Before you start: set a goal

VanHack is all about helping tech talents reaching their career dreams. What is yours? 

Before starting your journey with us, we would like you to think about your goals. What kind of company would you like to work for? Are you looking for opportunities in your field of experience or are you changing your career path? 

Job search is hard and there’s no sugar coating to it. Knowing your goals will help you focus attention, effort, and energy during the process. It also helps you provide the information on our platform for the kind of opportunity that is the right fit for you. Our resources are best used when directed to one clear target.

If you need help setting goals that are good and make sense for you we offer private sessions with VanHack specialists.

So, ok, ready to go? Our success team put together four steps you absolutely have to complete to have the highest chance of getting hired.


How to be successful, step 1: Complete your profile

One can’t stress this enough: please complete your profile on our platform. Tell us everything we can use to help you land your dream job. 

The onboarding steps are the first thing you do when you sign up with us. They are a quite straightforward series of questions that you answer by selecting the most appropriate option for your case. 

The next step takes longer and you will be required to think and work carefully about your answers. Incomplete profiles will not be shown to companies, so make sure to fill in all of the fields. 

But, hey, don’t rush through the process either, ok? We encourage you to really focus on putting out the best profile possible. Think of it as your greeting card and your first contact with potential employers. You will want to display your best, make a great impression, and improve your chances of being hired.


How to be successful, step 2: Showcase your experience and accomplishments

If the hiring process were an Olympic competition, you would be the dedicated athlete trying to get the gold medal, wouldn’t you? To be a champion you will need to work your hardest, showcase your skills, and stand out from the crowd. Our platform offers you the chance to do just that, so take advantage of it. 

Most hiring partners will pay more attention to your experience than anything else in your curriculum. Make sure to describe it thoroughly. Fill in the form with detailed information about what you do, what kind of problems you solved, the projects you have taken part in. If you have other accomplishments such as awards or promotions, tell us all about them. Describe situations where your skills had an impact in helping a client or the company to reach real important results.

Here is a summary of how to build a great profile on our platform:

  • Tell us everything about your experience: Experience is the most important part of your profile. A list of places where you’ve worked before is not enough. Describe your activities, responsibilities, and results. 
  • Describe your accomplishments: Don’t be shy. Tell us about your strengths, what kind of projects you have worked on, what problems you can solve.
  • Describe the impact of your work: Tell us about results you have reached, promotions, anything that will help you showcase your skills. Use numbers, percentages, awards received to show the great results you provided.


How to be successful, step 3: Verify your English

Have you ever taken a test to assess your English level? It’s usually a boring grammar exam that serves no other purpose. On our platform, we developed an innovative way of verifying candidates’ grasp of the language. We ask that you make three short videos talking about your career. The videos are analyzed by our specialists who evaluate your professional English level. You are not going to find a similar service anywhere else.

In addition to being part of the English verification, the video recordings can be displayed on your profile and sent to the hiring partners as a first introduction to the candidates. That’s why we want you to work hard on them and present your very best.

Our success team reminds you to think of the videos as your chance of making a good first impression. Companies will pay attention to your attitude more than anything else. Body language, enthusiasm, and posture will be some of the elements recruiters will keep an eye on. 

Are you camera shy? We feel you. But hey, big dreams require big efforts, right? While the English verification is mandatory for starting your job search with us, we would like you to think of them not as a chore but as an opportunity to showcase your talent to thousands of companies.

You can check some tips on how to nail the “Tell me about Yourself” video here.


How to be successful, step 4: Take the code challenges

Speaking of opportunities, another unique service on our platform is the Code Challenges. We have 19 different coding tasks that you can complete and add to your profile as proof of your skills. 

We are not going to lie to you, the Challenges can be hard and they do take a long time to finish, between 2 to 6 hours. You will want to prepare first, block some time in your schedule, and maybe have a snack around. 

But again, we want you to think of the Code Challenges as something you can use in your favor. They were developed to help you display your talents and get potential employers’ attention. You want to stand out, so pick your favorite coding language and do your best!


How to be successful, step 5: Keep an eye on your messages

You may have noticed a pattern here. Yes, proactivity is the key to being a successful candidate at VanHack. We want to encourage you to take real action steps into your journey to an international job. After completing all the activities on your profile, there is one more thing we would like you to do: keep an eye on our communication.

Our Job Board is updated constantly so check it every day. We also post job opportunities on our Slack groups, where you can get instant notifications about new openings. We will be in touch in every part of the process through email and SMS, so make sure to check them.

Here’s how to always be up to date:

  • Job Board: new opportunities are posted constantly. Check it daily. To increase your chances, apply within 48h of posting.  
  • Email: Give us your professional email, white list VanHack, create a filter on your email, and make sure to check it for new updates
  • SMS: Verify your cell phone number so that you can get our SMS. This is very important because we send interview invitations through text messages.


What if you fail?

Before we wrap this up, we would like to talk to you about some bumps you may find along the way. Sometimes, even after a long process, some candidates do not get the offer. Not being selected hurts and we are not going to pretend it doesn’t. 

We can tell you that even if you do not get the job on your first, second, or third try, if you have completed all the steps above diligently, you should not give up. Most hired VanHackers will tell you they got their dream job after having failed a few times and that they ended up landing an opportunity and relocating because they kept on trying and improving. 


It takes time, hang in there!

One final piece of advice: hang in there. Some things just take time and as much as we all would love to have our dreams come true in the blink of an eye, that’s just not possible. 

If you are serious about your plans of getting an international job, that means you probably have the attitude to make it happen: enthusiasm, dedication, hard work, and a bit of patience for good measure. Make sure you are putting your best effort into everything we can offer and count on us to help you every step of the way!

🌎 VANHACK, LinkedIn Talent Awards Winner 2021, is Canada’s most respected recruitment company. With more than 1,500 hires, VanHack is on a mission of increasing diversity and creating a borderless world. So if you are a software developer looking for a job abroad, in Canada, the US, or Europe, join VanHack today. 100% free for candidates, plus you will get all the preparation you need when your profile is shortlisted.

Visit our platform to become one of our many VanHackers hired 😃

For success stories and tips about working in Canada, check out the VanHack Podcast 🎧

Learn more about 📒Premium Academy  

Check out the next VanHack event 🗓

[Note: This post was originally posted on Sep 1, 2021 and updated on May 2022]

See 40 new senior developer profiles every 2 weeks and get notified about upcoming hiring events!

See 40 new senior developer profiles every 2 weeks and get notified about upcoming hiring events!

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