I graduated from University / college four years ago. I’m based in the UK, and upon graduating - I didn’t know what I wanted to do career wise. I started in a job, and didn’t expect anything from it, but it progressed and I got an internal promotion. I discovered Project Management at that point, and thought it seemed a good path to go down but I probably wasn’t what you’d describe as ‘passionate’ to do it. But - I applied for my first role in it, and moved into it. It was around that time though that I discovered coding.
I started teaching myself properly in November 2019. I just played around with HTML / CSS to begin with, and gradually began making more websites that were increasingly complex. As time went on, I absolutely fell in love with it - it’s amazing being able to just build stuff and put it out there for people to use.
Fast forward to 2021 - I’ve recently left my last job in Project Management and I’d love to become a full-time developer. I wasn’t enjoying Project Management particularly, and couldn’t wait to start coding again at the end of every day . However, I’m in my mid-20s now, and even at this age - it feels like I’ve left it a little late. I’m seeing lots of people in their late teens / early twenties doing amazing stuff, moving into higher level dev roles and working for great companies - but it feels really disheartening as I’m struggling to even hear back from junior level roles. There’s always someone ‘more experienced’ and I feel like I’m basically taking a 10 year step back. I don’t think people are taking me seriously either when I say I want to become a developer because I don’t have a computer science degree (particularly friends and family )
But I really want to do it - I’m just unsure on what the best path is. Most of my experience up to now has been in building websites, and I’ve done a little bit with Swift - although would love to really focus on that if it was possible.
My immediate priority now is obviously getting a job, as I’ve got bills to pay. But, I really want this next role to be right, and in a company I’d really love to stay with for a while!
But what do I focus on? How do I get there?
Most of my experience as I say is web based in the following languages / frameworks:
- A little bit of Redux
I can build pretty good websites (I think), but don’t have much of a portfolio to show off particularly (I really stupidly deleted loads of old code a few months back) and can’t say comprehensively how to write production level code, I’ve always just written it to build stuff. I have a basic understanding of testing, with Jest for React and a bit of Mocha. I’m keen to learn more about AWS and work with Postgres a bit for a different slant on databases though.
So I guess, what advice I’m asking for is what should I prioritise? What should I work on and build to get me my first dev job? What are the number one skills I should learn and work on now to get me there?
But also - asking people more experienced than me, should I focus on web dev over Swift as I’ve got more experience in it and feel like I’m closer to a full-time dev role? Or would it not be stupid to say lets focus on Swift and go down that route since I enjoy it?
Sorry for the long rambling post - I was just hoping some people who didn’t know me could provide some good advice. Any responses would be really appreciated!