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How virtualization pros can land their next IT job

Virtualization pros who are unhappy in their current role would be wise to follow our advisory board’s advice. It may help you land your next IT job.

By most accounts, the economy is starting to rebound, which is great for virtualization pros on the IT job hunt. If you’ve been stuck in that less-than-ideal job, now may be the time to look for a better opportunity.

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Virtualization pros looking for greener pastures should pay close attention to the advice from our Server Virtualization Advisory Board. This month, our group of experts answered the following question:

When applying for a new IT job, how can virtualization pros make their resumes stand out from the crowd?

Rob McShinsky, Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center
Targeted skills, relevant experience and a focused cover letter will land you an interview. But personality and attitude will most often get you a spot on the team. This is not only relevant for those hiring but also for those looking for an IT job. If the fit just isn’t there, then both parties should move on.

For managers, these factors are critical, because a bad hire can lead to having to handle more personnel issues, which takes time away from the department initiatives.

In IT departments, the “team fit” is especially important, because you often spend a lot of time with the group during late hours or weekends, when problems often arise. Having someone on the other end of the phone or in the office with a similar mindset, and who genuinely cares about helping out, makes a huge difference when stress is high.

So work on your skills and let your personality prevail over your nerves. Joining an IT department is really like becoming part of a family. Making the right choice will help you avoid sitting next to that creepy aunt or uncle for years to come.

Shannon Snowden, New Age Technologies
I have found highly skilled technical people are still in demand, even in a tight economy. We are frequently looking for quality virtualization specialists, especially with VMware experience. We see a lot of resumes, but genuine, quality skill sets and experience are still a challenge to find.

I like that VMware requires certification candidates to take an official VMware class. That helps to a degree, but many people choose not to build on the class content. They just study long enough to pass the VMware Certified Professional (VCP) exam. Now there are a whole lot more VCPs in the market that know very little about virtualization. It’s so common that we created a pretty thorough technical interview process to help us determine real technical skills versus candidates with good memories that test well.

Real world experience and solid skill sets never go out of style.

Dave Sobel, Level Platforms
There’s no, single magic bullet for getting an IT job. Before I discuss the resume, it’s important to note that a personal referral will always get someone’s attention before any particular item on a resume, reference letter or contact. Focusing on building and maintaining a good network of professional contacts is critical to career development and should never be overlooked.

Beyond a personal reference, real-world experience will get a resume noticed. Certifications and tests are useful, which indicate a basic level of competence. But having real experience with deployments, outlined in a resume for a hiring manager to review, stands out. Be specific: The more we know about what you can actually do, the better!

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