Should I build a few projects first

So I have applied for a lot of jobs as a frontend developer and I was able to land two interviews but then I realised I wouldn’t be able to build the task that was given to me as an assessment. I realised that I didn’t know about a lot of topics which are required in assessments, about backend and other topics

Also they asked if I had any projects and portfolio website

Should I first work on a few projects that includes backend too and create a portfolio website before applying for jobs again?

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Hi @basicallyababy !

Did they give you a take home project?
What were some of the concepts you were unfamiliar with?

freeCodeCamp has some practice take home projects you can try out.

If you don’t have a CS degree than I feel like projects are the only way to show your skills.

So I would definitely put together a portfolio of projects you can show to potential employers and talk about your work.

It would probably help you stand out more in the front end junior developer market.
I think knowing how to create a basic server and maybe some authentication wouldn’t hurt :grinning:

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They did give me project notes and instructions and other details so I guess it was a take home project.

There were a lot of topics I was unfamiliar with and I had a lot of doubts which I am still not able to clear. I had to render a list of rows dynamically and I didn’t know how to at first then after googling a little bit I was able to figure it out though. I didn’t know how to create a server using node and how to send data to frontend or how to setup that sandwich which was the main thing of the assessment as it was required to set up a backend.

I am currently pursuing Bachelors in Computer Application, will this be relevant?

You’re right. Building a few projects that includes a few areas such as creating a backend, setting up some authentication, storing and retrieving data, wouldn’t be harmful in any way

You helped me in my previous question too @jwilkins.oboe . Thank you so much again.
I have a lot of doubts regarding backend and the sandwich, would you listen to a few of them if you don’t mind?

As you quickly found out, there are hundreds of articles and videos that cover that. :grinning:
I think the take projects from freeCodeCamp will help with that too.

Good news is that you can learn all of that with just the first FCC backend Certification.

I think that definitely helps.
You are already landing interviews which is one of the hardest parts.

When I first started learning the backend, I had the same issues.
But I just started small and built smaller practice apps.

I think once you build some small practice apps, that will probably answer a lot of the questions you have.

But also, there are tons of articles covering every step of building out a full stack app :grinning:

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I have a lot of confusions like a lot of them. But I’ll start building smaller apps for practice and keep learning about this. Thank you so much for helping me.

hehe of course my friend you have to have your own projects because they are like your presentation card. Think about this, if you’re looking for a frontend job, well how do they know that you are a good and capable frontend developer.
Of course you dont need to recreate a new facebook for a project for example but it’s useful if you has created some websites with some funny stuffs or with functionalities that a business can use. Write code and get your hands dirty within the experience and practice

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There is some good advice here already, but since I’m waiting for something to compile, let me add $.02…

Should I first work on a few projects …

Definitely. I think the pre-first-job stage is a balance between learning and building. In the beginning, it’s mostly learning, but then you transition to building. But if you’re smart, you’ll use your building to learn and you learn new things so you can use them in your next project.

… that includes backend too …

A site with a custom, hand-built b/e certainly is more impressive. And a lot of places expect at least a little bit of b/e, even for f/e positions.

… and create a portfolio website …

Yeah, you need a portfolio site. You need a place to show off your stuff. And you need to make it as easy as possible to find your stuff and see what you can do. Don’t make them work for it - they’ll just give up and move onto the other 317 people that applied for that position.

…before applying for jobs again?

As a beginner, I think it is going to be hard to get a job without projects and a portfolio. But I also wouldn’t suggest the “I’m going to wait until everything is perfect…” approach. Things will never be “perfect”. And applying and interviewing are their own skills and take work. And I learned a lot from my interviews. I would not want to stop applying completely.

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This approach sounds nice. I am not able to manage time properly with the college project, working on my own projects and then working on the assessment from the interview. I am not able to figure out the time to learn anything and end up scratching my head on the assessment because I don’t know how to do it.

So I thought focusing on college first and working on personal projects on the side would be a good idea. That way I would get time to work on my skills and since it’s my final year in college I would be able to work on the college projects properly

Thank you so much for helping me out

even with a CS degree, you still need to do side projects on your own to stand out. the degree is nice. and dont get me wrong,. im totally not saying its irelllevant. its a piece of paper proving that you endured the time and effort and studies in obtaining one. but the projects is required to prove to employers u can do the work. i learned this the hard way. i thought i can get by with just an EE degree and nothing else and get a job. that got me the title of a highly educated unemployed in the field. so the anser is it doesnt hurt to do side projects regardless of what you do because with or without CS degree they demonstrate your hands on experience

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Yeah, that sounds reasonable, like you have a lot on your plate.

Yeah, I agree with that too. If you are creating good projects in your degree work, then that is good. If not, you’ll probably want to be creating some. Push everything up to github. At the very least I’d create a portfolio site.

Working on projects outside of school also tells them that you are driven. That is a good thing. Schoolwork should be your priority, but some sidework could set you up nicely for when you leave school.

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It’s worth mentioning that during a CS degree you will do a few projects of differe sizes and complexity. These can pad your portfolio to show practical skills outside of just listing the class on your resume.

I’d recommend to save these and upload them to git as soon as possible. You might not need a portfolio if you can hand your resumes out via alternate channels through your school as well, like through job fairs and internship opportunities.

Projects are projects :+1:

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Thank you all of you for all the help. Working on projects is definitely a good idea to work on. I’ll be uploading everything on github and showcase those on the portfolio

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