Struggling to find entry level web dev jobs in Chicago


I was wondering if I could get advice on how to get more responses back from job postings. I have my portfolio site set up and have 3 projects to show that I completed from my web dev bootcamp. I have had my resume and cover letters looked at by a career coach at my bootcamp and he said it looks good. I usually look on Indeed, Glassdoor, and LinkedIn but I rarely get calls back. The feedback I usually get is that they want someone more seasoned but I’m not sure how to get more experience in the first place. I was actually told they want someone more experienced for a position which had Entry Level in the name and in the phone screen they wanted me to interview for a “administrative programming” role instead.

It seems like there’s not even a lot of junior level positions near me which is kind of surprising since I live in a large city. Is it absolutely necessary to network and go to meetups if I want any chance? I am a bit introverted so I would prefer to go the route of applying on job boards if I can.

Join user groups. Talk and make friends with other EMPLOYED developers. Show them your projects, what you know, etc.

If they like your great attitude, and can get along fine with people (especially their people) and you have passable skills, they may recommend you in their company.


No offense intended at all, but applying on job boards is statistically the least effective way of landing a job. While I’ve personally had some in-person interviews that came about from an online application, it’s the least-recommended method by most people and I’d be inclined to agree.

I’m an introvert too, but you can’t really use that as an excuse to not network or attend meetups. You could start by meeting other developers, although you should eventually work up to events like training seminars, conferences, and career fairs. is a great resource for finding developer-oriented events, just plug every language or technology you know (or want to learn) into their search box and I bet you’ll find a ton of Meetup groups that way:

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Thanks, I’ll look into meetups. You’re asbolutely right. It’s been about 4 months since I graduated from my camp and what I’ve tried hasn’t worked so I should try and meet other devs in person.

You should show us your portfolio

Sure, it is

That group is dead; might not be the best example.

I’m right there with you, OP. I haven’t received much interest either. This city seems to be terrible for breaking into the industry. If it’s an option, maybe try looking out in the suburbs or even in a different city altogether.

To be honest, data analytics is really hot in a lot of industries. It was never my ‘favorite’ subject in school but I at least got through GMM or Regression Trees.

At the same time, I totally relate to seeking a ‘change’.

I like your portfolio apps, but I feel they don’t really reflect ‘what you know’ esp as a newly minted grad (I, unfortunately, am not).

Maybe you really just want to do dev, and not stats-- Well then look for an ‘in’ at a more traditional stats position at a very forward thinking web company. That is your in, and from there you can transition.

I totally understand how it is, both by desire, life changes, or opportunities to seek other careers and fields. But I myself don’t try to come and say I am a ‘master web ninja’ (as anyone here is at least a beginner in some way), but it is this other content we add in our own individual way.

The camp projects are all boring, not what employers are looking for: They are looking for your unique skills.

I wouldn’t ask you to redo what you’ve done, but really put an analytics/stats type app together.

Aside, I’d suggest the foot in the door approach.

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decent looking site there, give yourself a pat on the back

i would actually advise not putting any more work into it, its good enough. work on your network.

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