Trouble Getting Interviews

Hey everyone, I started with freecodecamp in 2017, while also ready “Learn Python the Hard Way” and took my time over 10 months or so, and towards the end of 2017 started putting a lot of time and effort into learning “full stack development” with a heavy focus on Frameworks (Django, React, Angular, .NET Core). After about 3 years of learning, I have started looking for work, and haven’t had much luck so far.

I have had one interview so far, where I was advised that my work experience was irrelevant, and that I should show my learning experience more clearly. I have had a few people in facebook groups review my portfolio site and I think I’ve made it pretty decent, but I’m definitely open to ideas. I’ve also had a few other reviews of my resume (which used to be color coded to my portfolio site) but again would be very open to and ideas.

I’ve worked on personal projects with Django, Django REST Framework, React, Angular, and C#.NET Core, I have a PSM 1 certification, and CTFL certification, and try to push to github every day.

Any advice or input would be greatly appreciated!

Portfolio (Build with Angular): Dominic-Tripodi.com
Github: https://github.com/DomTripodi93
My resume can be downloaded on my portfolio site

Welcome to the forum! And good luck on your journey!

I’ve yet to have an interview myself so you are a step ahead of me… but I would like to give some feedback on your profile:

The first thing that loads is very “basic” and seems outdated. The photo is low resolution and the text is just a basic font centered. I also notice that ‘hard’ transition in the background between the info & skills panel.

But you have great Content!

It’s very “static” the way it is now, your profile should be eye catching and animated (but not over kill). I think the overall content of the site is great just needs more put into the visual design. If your applying for frontend jobs, you want the recruiter/HR or whoever clicks the link say 'dang`.

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Hi i have taken a look at your profile and noticed a few things.

Based on your profile the technologies you listed it seems like you are just diving into different technologies without understanding what each technologies do. React/Angular are both front end library/framework while .net and django are both back-end framework. While it is good to learn different language and framework ,It can appear unfocused which is a red flag if you do not know how to utilize them correctly and it shows from your portfolio that you are just learning different languages without understanding its purpose.

You have to understand that each language / frameworks are just tools , while learning the tool is important , you need to be able to utilize the tool well, it does not matter if you have knowledge of different tools but do not understand how to utilize them to create a good end product. At the end of the day , the end product is what makes profit not the tooling underneath it.

I suggest you cut down on the language and just focus on one stack, just react + .net or angular + 1 back end and focus on creating projects that have real world value such as a eCommerce site or something that has real world usage. Focus more on creating a good end product than knowing the technology stack.

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Hey pjonp, thanks for the input!

I tried to tone down the color a bit, to make that “hard transition” make a little more sense, re-organized, put up a slightly higher quality photo, updated the logo, and added a trailing header. I’m kind of worried about going too crazy with the font, but I might play with it a little.

I’m wondering where it would be appropriate to add animations, I’m not sure where/when I would want to add animations.

When you say “basic” and outdated, I’m curious if you could give me a better idea, or example of what would be less “basic” or more modern? I have seen some people have descriptions for their app as like a pop up card that covers the image which would otherwise take up the whole card, and thinking about doing that.

Thank you again!
Dominic

Hey Balancedsan, I’m not sure I understand what you mean by “not understanding it’s purpose”, or how that shows in my portfolio. How does it look like I don’t understand the purpose or utilization, or what is missing that would show that I do?

Or is it just too many conflicting technologies? I’ve been moving away from Python in the backend towards C# because of the job market in my area, but I’m accomplishing the same goal with .NET Core that I was with Django REST Framework. React I could probably take off at this point, maybe replacing it with Karma, and Python with .NET Core in tools, feels like a better view of a single stack.

Thank you for checking it out! looking forward to hearing more

Some simple things like instead of saying “Send me an Email: here” or “Connect with me on Linkdin: here:” Use just the Logo with a button.

Also remember that mobile devices/tablets won’t have a mouseover events so if the person looking at your resume/email pulls it up on their phone they won’t see any of those.

I still need to put a ton of work in my own personal portfolio, but there are some great examples in this forum.

The one that have bookmarked is: My Complete Portfolio but there are many other great examples here too. If your resume goes to a “recruiter” or HR person, they are going to LOVE a site like this, it’s going to be moved to the top of the list because it ‘looks pretty’. (my opinion)

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I think what he’s trying to say is to feature the product that you built, which you do, but have it be more the center of attention than the languages you used. Also you aren’t going to get hired for knowing all of those languages. Your job will most likely be using a select few of them. Like the saying goes there are either people that know a lot about one thing or a little about a lot of things. So the section with all the languages makes it seem like you don’t know specific ones as well as you could.
Also I would just go on google fonts and spend some time experimenting with different ones. Don’t be afraid to make the font bigger, hope that helps, best of luck in your job search!

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I’m just going to be honest here but maybe this will bring you some good advice?
And I’m going to use an analogy to make it somewhat clear:

When you look for a nice and good dinner you want to see a nice menu on the front of the restaurant. You will see the basic things the chef has to offer you and if you like it? You will go inside and have a good meal.

If you have a restaurant with not the nicest font on the menu, a lot of information and all the things the chef can use… in the meal. It’s just to much and the chance that you will enter the restaurant is far less than the first place you’ve seen in this example.

Clean your portfolio op. Focus on a few things that you really know you can master. Show that HR manager your best menu. And once you can present yourself show them how you master your skills.

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Thanks for all the kind words, and I am so glad that you like my portfolio! :smile:

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It can appear unfocused which is a red flag if you do not know how to utilize them correctly and it shows from your portfolio that you are just learning different languages without understanding its purpose.

You have to understand that each language / frameworks are just tools , while learning the tool is important , you need to be able to utilize the tool well, it does not matter if you have knowledge of different tools but do not understand how to utilize them to create a good end product. At the end of the day , the end product is what makes profit not the tooling underneath it.

This is really good advice for anyone including myself. Thank you!

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Hola,
The .net (c#?) javascript, react , combo sounds like a lot to do all at once,… i suggest you focus only on frontend (and on the backburner js in the backend aswell, aka nodejs) .net is huge all by itself already, i can imagine you totally love backend, and you want to do that too , but that can happen later while you have a FE job. Why did you choose .net and not java or nodejs?

A bit about myself, i started in may 2016 ( i am cheating a bit as before that i read ton of books on js, css, html) concentrated on FE, got lots of interviews but landed nothing, Got my first FE in dec 2017 (typescript, react, redux) , after that i ported a mobile game to web (again just to show off my skills in fe area) and that landed by second fe job, now i am fulltime dev (nodejs). So what made my made my success in jobsearch is pure focus on one area (fe in my case) and take it from there,

Ps. I did not use a lot of frameworks in the beginning as to acquire vanilla webapi js skills. I think that was helpfull aswell

Good luck with everything

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Going to be honest here because honest feedback is important to you getting to where you want to be

Portfolio

  1. Weird font/ color choices
  2. Simplicity is best when creating a portfolio try and just copy someone elses / use a template for the design of the website
  3. Focus on quality of skills not the quantity I think getting really good at JS and a major framework go a long way than learning a little of everything

Resume

  1. Weird font / layout
  2. Everything just looks squished to one page you need more white space
  3. HR doesn’t care about skills they just wanna see a good layout and a piece of paper they can actually read
  4. It looks like you typed this up on MS Word and just kinda left it squished with like 5 different sections on one page jumbled together
  5. Focus on quality of projects to display and quality of employment relevant to the job description. Use something like creddle to create your resume
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It might help the user if you can give more specific details about what you define as “weird” here.

I may have over-corrected with the font, It was all Times New Roman and Arial before, so understandable was advised to use “fancier” fonts, but I just updated it.

I’m not sure what to do color-wise, I read about “blue red purple” as a good color-scheme, but I can see how it looks a little messy, ditto the resume, which was also overly colorful.

I went with .NET and C# because it comes up the most on in job postings in my area, and I’m hearing the idea of specializing in frontend, but I am also building full stack applications that need an API and Database to store user data. I actually used the main one a lot at my last job, and I’ve already cut out a lot, Python, Data Science, Django, Django REST Framework, AWS, Azure, Firebase, MySQL, React, Redux, Docker, Scrum. Right now it just focuses on one stack - MS SQL Server, C#.NET Core, Angular

I’m trying to put the emphasis on Frontend, but my sort of “capstone” project is Full Stack, as are most of my projects on github that are not listed on the portfolio. I can understand how that looks less focused, but I have trouble coming up with real world applicable project ideas that don’t require a backend, and aside from HTML/CSS, backend is where I started, I had built a REST API before I ever went out of Vanilla JS to a Framework.

I really appreciate all of the input, and I am trying to taking everything you guys are saying into account, I’d love to hear anything further about the color scheme, or how I could put more emphasis on frontend and/or vanilla JS without hiding all of my full stack projects

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I see your portfolio has some some original projects and rewritten versions of them. I would stick with a single version which you think best represents your skills. If you have all your project code on GitHub, someone can always go back in the commit history to see early versions of your code. Also, there is no reason to have a separate section for the GitHub code, when you can just have a link at the bottom of each project to the code. Some of your have it and some of them do not. I was just make it consistent.

I would also suggest making the blog a separate app (maybe a subdomain of your portfolio site like blog.https://dominic-tripodi.com) and provide a link to it from your portfolio.

Lastly, I suggest removing the favorite tools section and make sure to incorporate the tools used in each project description.

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Thank you so much! Very helpful and concise, It feels like there is a lot less to it now, but I’m thinking that is for the best, the blog is still in the site for now, but I’ll work on a subdomain and separate app after I replace the v0.7 production status

You do not necessarily need to put the blog on a subdomain, if you plan on it having the same color theme that matches your site. Instead, you could just have a separate page (http://dominic-tripodi.com/blog) for it.

Thanks Randell, your insight had been very helpful, wrote a simple little grocery list app to replace the V0.7 in the showcase. Going to update the resume to a cleaner format, have some follow ups planned for tomorrow, going to drop off my resume and cover letter at a few places I applied.

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Hi, I think you shouldn’t confuse people’s opinions to facts. If you could, go to a professional resume maker and get them to do your resume, cover letter and LinkedIn. If you could, find someone who makes resume for IT professionals and get them to do it for you. Even if you have to spend a little bit of money, think of it as a investment in your profession. It will pay out massively.

Secondly practice interview questions which are general. Questions such as why did you apply for this job. You can reply to those questions with examples from your personal life, from your experiences. I think this helps interviewer to get to know you personally. If you could try to show them your values in life aligned with the company’s values you will make a impression.

Lastly, I don’t think you need to push for github everyday. I think its a silly thing (I did this too). You could rather plan and build projects with different parts of your skills you want to show. Build a app has authentication and connect to a data base and has CRUD operations. Things in that nature shows your skills and your knowledge in putting all of it together.

Whatever you do, Don’t give up. Good luck.

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Hiring manager here. Here’s my honest opinion based on my experience.

Your portfolio is not appealing to the eyes (you’re obviously not a designer, which is fine). I don’t really care about the visuals when I’m hiring for back-end roles. If you’re applying for front-end (React or Angular) consider using a simple template to improve your portfolio page.

Your samples are very impressive. The My Production Management App is fantastic as a resume project (based on the code). I would strongly recommend that you create a demo login/default account (not all hiring managers can/will read your code).

Your main focus right now should be cleaning up your resume (it’s very cluttered). Reduce the education section, consider making the projects section more prominent, use clickable PDF links, and consider only using a single column (your resume’s key job should be to get me looking at your project – that’s your silver bullet to an interview).

I’m calling it now: you’re going to be publishing a “I’m employed!” post in the next 90 days if you pump up your applications.

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