I'm one of those obnoxious people that will answer questions with questions.
Them: "How do I make this work?"
Me: "What have you tried?"
Them: "How do I learn about AI?"
Me: "What is your learning style?"
Them: "How do I get a job at my dream company?"
Me: "Have you taken a look at their open requisitions?"
Now if you were with me until that last set and got confused, let me explain.
Companies tell their secrets in who they are hiring with what skills.
If this is surprising to you, it was to me too at one point. Now its easily one of the best tools I have in my soothsaying toolbox.
Job posts may:
- Describe the exact skills you need, plus more bonus skills, for said job
- Give you an overview as to what the company is looking to do
- Inspire you to write better job posts yourself
- Show you that you need a new job
But have you thought about how job posts also tell you:
- Who is using your product, maybe even how
- Who is evaluating your product
- Who your competitors are
- Who your developer community may look like
Hold on, am I suggesting you get on job searching engines and destroy your personal algorithm by searching for roles that may apply to the product, language, or framework you are working on?
Is LinkedIn going to send you recommendations that may not make a ton of sense to your personal career path?
Are you going to be able to build a persona that may be less influenced by your existing internal ideas?
I mean probably. Depends how easily you are swayed.
My point is, if you have questions that range from competitive analysis to "is Cobol really worth learning anymore?", I highly recommend sitting down with LinkedIn, Glassdoor, Indeed, and other job search engines and looking around. This is incredibly powerful data that can help you understand what skill gaps companies have today, where your product or language sits among its competitors, and how some roles were rebranded (looking at you data scientist).
I'm in the process of building out some developer personas to guide discussions I'm having internally about our devrel strategy. I've included data from open job posts, questions and profiles I've seen on forums, and how competitors have made their products available. Let me know if you want a post about it. Happy to share my steps to help others!
Have you used job postings for something other than job seeking activities?