Breaking into the Tech Industry: A Step-by-Step Guide to Landing Your First Job

A career in the tech industry can be highly rewarding, offering competitive salaries, flexible schedules, and the opportunity to work on groundbreaking projects. Unfortunately, many individuals are deterred from pursuing tech jobs due to common misconceptions or the belief that they lack the necessary experience. The truth is that entering the tech field is more achievable than most people think. In this step-by-step guide, we will show you how to kickstart your tech career.

Benefits of Working in the Tech Industry

The tech industry boasts numerous advantages that make it an appealing career choice:

  • High demand: According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the tech sector is projected to add around 667,600 new jobs by 2030, with cloud computing, big data, and information security being in particularly high demand.

  • Lucrative salaries: Tech jobs generally offer higher salaries compared to many other industries. For instance, entry-level positions like Manual QA can yield an average salary of $67,206.

  • Work-life balance: The tech industry offers unparalleled flexibility, allowing employees to work remotely and design their own schedules. This freedom enables individuals to balance work with personal commitments and passions.

  • Continuous growth and challenge: Tech jobs constantly require individuals to acquire new skills and stay updated with the latest developments. This ongoing learning process ensures that tech professionals are constantly challenged and have opportunities for personal and professional growth.

When you factor in additional perks such as excellent health insurance, generous paid time off, and parental leave programs, it’s clear why pursuing a career in tech is an excellent choice. So, why do so many people hesitate to apply for tech positions?

Myths That Discourage People from Working in Tech

Misconceptions about the tech industry often dissuade individuals from considering tech jobs. Let’s debunk a few of these widespread myths:

  • Degree requirements: Contrary to popular belief, you don’t necessarily need a degree in computer science to work in the tech industry. While a relevant degree can be beneficial, employers prioritize skill sets over formal education. Many tech jobs can be accessed through short-term courses, as long as you possess the required skills and can learn quickly.

  • Age limitations: The stereotype that tech workers are young individuals in their early twenties is far from the truth. Data from Statista reveals that the median employee age at most companies is over 30. The tech industry is committed to fostering diversity, including age diversity, and is continually progressing in this regard.

  • Coding expertise: Many people assume that tech jobs exclusively require programming skills. However, tech companies need a diverse range of professionals, including designers, marketers, project managers, and customer support specialists. Even roles that are considered “technical” often do not require advanced coding abilities. For example, you can land a job as a Manual QA without extensive programming knowledge.

The entry-level tech jobs outlined below demonstrate that there are numerous opportunities for beginners in the tech industry:

  • Manual QA Testers: Responsible for ensuring software applications meet requirements and function as expected.

  • Tech Sales Representatives: Sell complex scientific or technological products, such as software, hardware, or services.

  • Customer Support Specialists: Provide technical assistance and resolve customer issues related to using products or services.

  • Project Managers: Plan, execute, and oversee projects to ensure they remain within approved scope, budget, and time frames.

  • Data Analysts: Analyze and interpret data to solve business problems and provide actionable insights.

  • Web Designers: Create visually appealing elements for web applications, such as page layouts, menus, and color schemes.

  • Technical Support Specialists: Oversee and maintain company hardware and software systems, troubleshooting issues.

  • Technical Writers: Create documents, such as user manuals, training materials, and product descriptions, related to technological products and services.

While these roles require specific technical knowledge, the necessary skills can be learned relatively quickly. Additionally, you don’t need a specific degree or certification to embark on a tech career, making it possible to start a new journey in just a few months.

In the next section, we will guide you through the ten steps required to secure your first tech job.

10 Steps to Get Your First Job in Tech

Searching for a new job, especially in an unfamiliar industry, can be daunting. However, with a clear plan and the right approach, the process can become less intimidating. Follow these ten steps to increase your chances of getting hired by a tech company:

Step 1. Choose a career path that suits you best.

Gain knowledge about the tech industry by researching available job opportunities, common requirements, and positions that align with your interests and strengths. Reflect on your previous experience and domain knowledge, as this can give you an advantage when applying for tech jobs related to your background.

Step 2. Determine the skills you need to learn.

Once you’ve identified your desired career path, create a list of skills that are essential for success in that field. Browse job descriptions on platforms like LinkedIn, Monster, Indeed, or Glassdoor to understand what employers are looking for. Don’t forget to consider both technical and soft skills, as both are valued in the tech industry.

Step 3. Acquire the necessary skills.

Decide on the best method for acquiring the required skills based on your budget and time availability. Options include traditional college education, online courses, self-study, or in-person training programs. Each method has its pros and cons, so choose the one that suits your unique situation the best.

Step 4. Gain hands-on experience.

Real-world experience is highly valued by employers. Even if you lack full-time paid experience, you can gain relevant skills through volunteering, freelancing, internships, or personal projects. These opportunities allow you to build your portfolio, enhance your resume, and gain confidence, which is crucial during interviews.

Step 5. Prepare for the job market.

Before diving into the application process, take some time to prepare yourself for the job market. Develop drafts of your resume and cover letters, update your LinkedIn profile, and ensure your social media pages present a professional image. Creating a job search plan can help you stay organized, focused, and motivated throughout the process.

Step 6. Identify your priorities.

Understanding what you want from a job is crucial to finding the right fit. Consider your short-term and long-term career goals, as well as your preferences for company size, work schedule, and career advancement opportunities. Having a clear picture of your ideal job will guide your search and help you ask the right questions during interviews.

Step 7. Apply for jobs consistently.

Getting hired often requires sending applications to numerous companies. On average, it takes between 21 and 80 applications to receive just one job offer. Dedicate time each day to search for new openings, customize your application documents, and submit your applications. Even if you don’t see immediate results, remain persistent and continue applying regularly.

Step 8. Prepare for interviews.

Thoroughly research common interview questions for your desired role and practice your responses. Consider conducting mock interviews with a friend to refine your answers. Prepare questions to ask the interviewer, as this demonstrates your interest and engagement. Familiarize yourself with common interview mistakes to avoid them during the actual interview.

Step 9. Network strategically.

Networking can significantly enhance your job search efforts. Attend job fairs, industry events, and engage with professionals on LinkedIn. Your connections may provide access to unadvertised job openings or refer you to companies that align with your interests. Don’t be discouraged if you have limited contacts in the tech industry; they can still introduce you to relevant individuals or provide insights into tech positions in non-tech companies.

Step 10. Prioritize self-care.

Job hunting can be time-consuming and exhausting, making self-care essential. Take care of your physical and mental well-being by getting enough sleep, maintaining a healthy diet, exercising, and taking regular breaks for hobbies or socializing. Prioritizing self-care ensures you stay energized and motivated throughout the process.

By following these ten steps, you can navigate the path towards a fulfilling tech career with confidence. Good luck, and may you land your dream job soon!


Q: Do I need a computer science degree to work in the tech industry?
A: No, a computer science degree is not a prerequisite for a tech career. Employers value skill sets and look for candidates who can do the job effectively. While certain roles may require specific technical knowledge, many positions can be accessed through alternative learning paths or short-term courses.

Q: Are tech jobs only for young people?
A: No, tech jobs are not exclusive to young individuals. The tech industry places significance on diversity, including age diversity. Data indicates that the median employee age at most tech companies is over 30, demonstrating that the industry welcomes professionals of various age groups.

Q: Are coding skills necessary for all tech jobs?
A: Coding skills are not mandatory for all tech jobs. While developers play a vital role in the industry, there is a wide array of positions that do not require advanced coding abilities. Designers, marketers, customer support specialists, project managers, and data analysts are just a few examples of professionals who contribute to the tech industry without extensive programming knowledge.


Breaking into the tech industry is an attainable goal with the right strategy and approach. By following the outlined steps and debunking common misconceptions, you can confidently embark on a new career in tech. Remember to research, acquire the necessary skills, gain hands-on experience, and prioritize self-care throughout the process. With perseverance and determination, you will soon secure your first tech job and begin an exciting journey in the evolving world of technology.