So you want to be a software developer? Great idea. Good developers are always in demand and the salary is well above average. It’s exciting as well, you could work on projects that change the world – and once you’re in, you can take your career in any direction you choose.

But, how do you find that first job? There are so many out there - how do you know which is the right one for you? Here’s how to find your first job in development.

Before you start

Before you start looking for jobs, you need to make sure that when you find a job, you have a chance of getting it. We put together an article on this which you can read here. Briefly, here are some things you need to do:

  • Create a portfolio of the best coding work you have done so far – create your own portfolio website and build out your GitHub account
  • Build connections in the industry that can point you in the right direction – sometimes it’s who you know, not what you know
  • Take on some freelance work to keep your skills sharp while you apply

You should also think about the kind of employer you want to work for. What sectors interest you? Corporate giant or small startup? Do you want to work from home?

You should also think about your values when you search for jobs. Can you find a company with a culture that aligns?


One option when looking for your first job in development is to call up some recruiters. This sounds like an attractive option – to let them do the work for you! Your recruiter will find out what kind of role you want, then arrange interviews for you until you land that perfect job. Right?

While there are some brilliant recruiters out there who put the interests of their candidates first and foremost, you have to know that not all recruiters are like this. Recruiters get paid when they place candidates – so, they might put you forward for totally unsuitable jobs, because they need to earn. They might just be trying to find you a role, not the perfect role.

A brand new solution

Haystack is a great new way for aspiring developers to find their first roles in the industry. When you create a profile on the Haystack app, top tech employers can comes to you.

  • Once you’ve created your profile, tell Haystack what you are looking for, this could include the tech stack you want to use, or whether you want remote working
  • Our algorithm will  match you with the right opportunities. The Haystack score shows you exactly how suitable each job is for you
  • Browse your opportunities – make sure you check out each company’s tech stack, engineering practices, culture and more
  • Complete your profile and you can apply for your ideal opportunity through the Haystack app
  • Plus, if you tell us you’re interested, top employers have the chance to connect with you

We understand that there are lots of aspiring developers right now. So to help people looking for their first job in the industry, we introduced a new feature that shows the level of each job using five increments – Graduate, Junior, Mid, Senior and Advanced. This helps you filter out any irrelevant jobs for you.

Find out more from Haystack

Knowing where to start in software development is difficult, but you can find that ideal opportunity for you.

To find out more about Haystack and download the app today.

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