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How to find a job?

By shaunbed ·
Hi,
My name is Shaun Bedingfield and I have been programming nonprofessionally
for over 16 years (I am 26 now). I know a myriad of technologies and feel
that I am very qualified to do almost any software development related task.
However, I can't find work because of a lack of industry experience.
I have been applying for jobs for a couple years now (yes, really) and I
am always turned down with the response that I don't have enough work
experience. I would hate to leave an industry that I have been in love with
most of my life but I just can't get work. I have tried everything and
anything all the way to begging and pleading.
I am sure that I am not alone with this problem and I was wondering how
others with little or none (I technically have 4 years) of industry
experience go about finding work. It seems to me like a chicken and the egg
problem with no solution.
What am I doing wrong?

Sincerely,
Shaun Bedingfield

Below is my resume (updated 7/11)

Shaun Bedingfield MCAD for .NET
19606 Cottage Park Circle, Houston, TX 77094 | 281-579-3549 | 832-483-7858 | shaunbed@swbell.net


Software Engineer/Architect/Developer

Strong programmer, software analyst and designer possessing a lifelong passion for making software and IT work. Skilled designer and analyst who designs software using an incremental approach which manages risk while ensuring a stable and workable product throughout development. Responsive developer who uses frequent user feedback and requirements gathering skills to ensure that the right software is developed and delivered. Experienced trainer who can work with staff to ensure that the full benefit of the software package can be materialized and mentor other programmers to help improve developer productivity and quality. Technically knowledgeable developer who can help insure that products are secure and utilize current technology to maximize business advantage.


Certifications/Degrees
----------------------

B.S. Computer Science (University of Texas at Dallas)
GPA 3.667

MCAD For .NET (Windows and Internet w/ SQL Server focus)


Industry Experience
----------

2/05 - Present Designing an Access database for Southwest Memorial Hermann Hospital
(Personal contract)
Description: Designed and implemented a system to Analyze Stroke Treatment in Access.
This system was designed as part of an initiative to improve stroke treatment at the
hospital. The system was designed to allow easy entry of stroke data and flexible
analysis. Training was provided to assure that the staff could fully utilize and
benefit from the program.

Skills used: SQL, VBA, Access, ActiveX Controls, Staff training, Risk Management,
Incremental Development, Prototyping, User Interface Design, Testing, ADO

1/05 - Present Ben Taub General Hospital - Volunteer DBA
Description: Provided reporting and maintenance for the volunteer database

Skills used: Access, Data cleaning, SQL, Data analysis, SQL Training

7/02 - 11/02 Neovox - Software Engineer
Description: Helping to deliver data access over cellular and voice connections

Skills used: SQL, SQL Server 2000, MySQL, PHP, Java, .NET, C#, IIS, HTML, ASP.NET, ADO.NET,
Nuance, Telephony Hardware, VoiceXML, XML

1/02 - 3/04 Officemax - Sales
Description: Selling products to customer

Skills used: Customer Service, In-depth knowledge of hardware and software products

5/00 - 7/01 University of Texas at Dallas - Research Assistant
Description: Mentoring Computer Science Students and later helping to test a program
for collecting telecommunications metrics.

Skills used: Regular Expressions, Java, VBA, Excel, Student mentoring

1/98 - 3/00 Texas Instruments - Student Employee
Description: Building a UI for a program used for automatic test code generation.

Skills used: Regular Expressions, Incremental Development, Constant User Involvement
and Feedback, C/C++, Solaris, Language Parsing Skills, TCL/TK, Network Deployment,
Prototyping


Additional Skills
-------------

VB.NET, UML, Object Oriented Analysis And Design, Design Patterns, SOAP, WSDL, COM,
.NET COM Interoperability, COM+, XSLT, Windows Internals, x86 Assembly, Windows Security,
Visual Basic, Requirements Gathering, Active Directory, Penetration Testing,
Common Security Vulnerabilities, Reflection

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by shaunbed In reply to Better

I did it because a lot of recruiters only consider skills they can see you have used at a specific job.

Other recruiters will take into consideration additional skills you say you have.

If I don't list skills associated with a job (like I often don't), recruiters tend to tell me I have no skills. If I don't have other skills, most companies will filter me out and I will never get read.

I am not sure how to properly address this.

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This avoids the repitition.. I am not sure whether it works..

by shaunbed In reply to

Shaun Bedingfield
Software Engineer/Architect/Developer
Microsft Certified Application Developer for .NET
19606 Cottage Park Circle
Houston, TX 77094

Home - 281-579-3549
Cell Phone - 832-483-7858

shaunbed@swbell.net


Certifications/Degrees
----------------------

B.S. Computer Science (University of Texas at Dallas)
GPA 3.667

MCAD For .NET (Windows and Internet w/ SQL Server focus)


Industry Experience - 4 years
----------

2/05 - Present Designing an Access database for Southwest Memorial Hermann Hospital
Description: Building a system to store and analyze stroke treatment as part of
an initiative to improve stroke treatment at Southwest Memorial Hermann Hospital.

Skills used: SQL, VBA, Access, ActiveX Controls, Staff training, Risk Management,
Incremental Development, Prototyping, User Interface Design, Testing, ADO

1/05 - Present Ben Taub General Hospital - Volunteer DBA
Description: Provided reporting and maintenance for the volunteer database

Skills used: Access, Data cleaning, SQL, Data analysis, SQL Training

7/02 - 11/02 Neovox - Software Engineer
Description: Helping to deliver data access over cellular and voice connections

Skills used: SQL, SQL Server 2000, MySQL, PHP, Java, .NET, C#, IIS, HTML, ASP.NET, ADO.NET,
Nuance, Telephony Hardware, VoiceXML, XML

1/02 - 3/04 Officemax - Sales
Description: Selling products to customer

Skills used: Customer Service, In-depth knowledge of hardware and software products

5/00 - 7/01 University of Texas at Dallas - Research Assistant
Description: Mentoring Computer Science Students and later helping to test a program
for collecting telecomunication metrics.

Skills used: Regular Expressions, Java, VBA, Excel, Student mentoring

1/98 - 3/00 Texas Instruments - Student Employee
Description: Building a UI for a program used for automatic test code generation.

Skills used: Regular Expressions, Incremental Development, Constant User Involvement
and Feedback, C/C++, Solaris, Language Parsing Skills, TCL/TK, Network Deployment,
Prototyping


Additional Skills
-------------

VB.NET, UML, Object Oriented Analysis And Design, Design Patterns, SOAP, WSDL, COM,
.NET COM Interop, COM+, XSLT, Windows Internals, x86 Assembly, Windows Security,
Visual Basic, Requirements Gathering, Active Directory, Penetration Testing,
Common Security Vulnerabilities, Reflection

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let's try this

by ITgirli In reply to This avoids the repititio ...

We'll use this section as an example:

"2/05 - Present Designing an Access database for Southwest Memorial Hermann Hospital
Description: Building a system to store and analyze stroke treatment as part of
an initiative to improve stroke treatment at Southwest Memorial Hermann Hospital.

Skills used: SQL, VBA, Access, ActiveX Controls, Staff training, Risk Management,
Incremental Development, Prototyping, User Interface Design, Testing, ADO"

With "building a system", what did you use to build a system? You could say "I utilized X, Y, and Z to create a system to store and analyze blah blah blah. I then trained the staff on A & B to help resolve issues with User Inter.. blah blah and implement a staff friendly product yadda yadda yadda.
Add your own words, dust off the dictionary.
Add your skills to what you did and add the other skills ( and ones that they are looking for in an employee)to a pile at the top, not bottom. You want them to see what you can do, before you tell them how you did it.
Of course, I'm no hiring manager, so if anyone wants to add a little feed back to this I would greatly appreciate it.

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Good advice

by vltiii In reply to let's try this

One other thing I don't think I've seen touched on. What constitutes a system? Are we talking one machine with an access database or are we talking a network??? If the later, how many nodes are we talking?

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Why 4 Years Experience?

by ramonas In reply to This avoids the repititio ...

Shaun: Why are you showing 'x' years of Experience under Industry Experience? According to my math, you have 7 years and besides HR people can do the math. Just title it 'Experience'. I can't put my finger on it, but I feel there is something else missing that would make this resume POP, which is what you need. Maybe bullets on your skills. Any tangible outcomes, i.e. savings to company, improved efficiency, fewer errors? Show results if you have them!

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by shaunbed In reply to Why 4 Years Experience?

I am taking the years of experience off. I guess I don't have my latest copy listed. I am going to do some more editing today.

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How to address this

by vltiii In reply to

There is such thing as informational interviews. Once you identify companies that you would like to work for, call managers within those companies adn see if you can schedule an informational interview. Be sure to emphasize that it's for informational purposes only and that you're not trying to peddle yourself. If they agree and meet with you reassure them again that it's for informational purposes only. Of course if they like you and want to offer you a job or arrange a hiring interview don't turn it down. The intent of the informational interview is to find out about the company culture and at the same time you can ask about what the manager likes to see on a resume and what they don't. This can be a great networking opportunity since you will have exchanged business cards with the manager. If you don't have business cards make some up with you name contact numbers BS and certification. Give them out any opportunity you can. People know people who know people.

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Getting better (far better)

by jmgarvin In reply to Resume 7/6

I'm glad you yanked the skills used section. It was redudant and redudant ;-)

On your present job you don't say where you work and the formating is somewhat different than the rest of the resume.

In your description of what you did, expand it out a little to explain what you built or what you sold.

Let's take a look at this and expand it out:
"Designing an Access database for Southwest Memorial Hermann Hospital
Description: Building a system to store and analyze stroke treatment as part of
an initiative to improve stroke treatment at Southwest Memorial Hermann Hospital."

Designed an Access database that stored and analyzed stroke treatment

If you want to go further, explain how it was an integral piece of the initiative and helped to improve stroke treatement by x%.

You don't need to keep naming the place where you worked.

Your resume is coming along quite nicely!

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Accomplishments

by JamesRL In reply to Getting better (far bette ...

The resume is not a recipe list(skills) but a sales tool.

What employers and hiring managers(like myself) want to know is what you have accomplished - what achievements have you made which set you apart from the rest of the crowd.

How did your work improve things for your employer - did it save $$, improve efficiency, decrease processing time, improve usability etc.

What problems did your work fix.

Was your project or your work on time and on budget?

Did you take on a new skillset, expand your knowledge, become a subject matter expert in a new area?

I recommend looking at the sample resumes at www.aneliteresume.com.

James

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by shaunbed In reply to Accomplishments

I think I need more than samples. I sent them an email and will see how they reply.

I am still working with everything. I would like to have a stable resume within the week so I can more seriously work at my job search.

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