Article

Cloud & Technology
16/04/19

HOW TO CREATE A DEVOPS CV THAT STANDS OUT

When it comes to DevOps jobs, many approach it with a traditional IT mindset.  But although there is high demand for DevOps professionals, it doesn’t mean that you don’t have to invest in your CV, especially if you want to secure a great DevOps role.

DevOps is a growing area, and many IT professionals want to make a sideward move into it.  However, many don’t have direct DevOps experience.  But this doesn’t have to preclude you; it’s all in the value you can inject into your CV.

As recruitment experts in the placement of DevOps professionals, we see a fair few DevOps CVs.   We’ve looked at the ones which stand out and come up with a top 5 to help you really get value from your CV. 

 

1. Customise your CV

Putting the same CV out repeatedly is the job search equivalent of throwing mud at a wall. 

Eventually, some of it may stick, but most of it will fall off.  This is because CVs must be dynamic.  It’s no longer good enough to consider it done and dusted and keep reusing it.  They must be tailored to each job.  For example, consider the following non-DevOps-specific skills and experience that could be useful in a DevOps position.

  1. Technology expertise. If you are experienced in Bash scripting or python, you may want to bring that to the fore of your CV if the DevOps role places significant value on automation.  If the potential employer needs to be aware of any application, programme or system you can use, make it crystal clear on your CV.

  2. People management experience.  This is vital to highlight if you are applying to a role where managing a team is as important as your DevOps skills.

  3. Specific industry experience. Don’t assume that potential employers will know what sectors your previous roles have been in.  They might not know the company names.  So, make certain that you highlight this if the job adverts are seeking experience from a particular sector.

Your CV has 2 seconds to pique the interest.  The keywords and technologies should pop out to the reader quickly.

 

2. Clearly demonstrate how your experience translates to DevOps

This is where traditional IT skills need to be put into context for the reader.

This is especially true if you are making the move across to DevOps.  You might expect a potential employer to be able to identify transferable skills, but the reality is often they only do so if they are clearly stated.  Therefore it is important you do this job for them.

For example, System Admins are often in high demand for DevOps roles.  If this is the case, you should highlight your ability to build and administer infrastructure, as well as being able to demonstrate the commercial impact of this work.

It’s equally important that you showcase your soft skills here too.  For example, team working.  Give examples of who you partnered with on a project and again what the outcome was.

 

3. CV proof

If you’re focused on transitioning into a new DevOps role, it’s important that you consider what might be lacking on your CV.  If possible, try to seek out these opportunities in your current role and look to take on additional responsibilities. 

This will also help you during any interview as it will allow you to sow a deeper understanding of how DevOps methodologies fit in with the wider strategy.  Being able to showcase multi-stakeholder collaboration and good relationship management will put you in good stead.  Similarly, if you sought out opportunities in other areas, such as cloud migration, agile methodologies, development, and integration, then you are once again creating opportunities for yourself.

If a role presents itself that is either purely a DevOps specialism or a general IT role with a DevOps focus, you will be equally as capable of applying to either.

 

4. Prepare for DevOps interviews

It’s important to think about the types of questions you will be asked in an interview and tackle these on the CV. 

Therefore it’s also important that your CV is not just a shopping list of DevOps related keywords.  It needs to tell a story about how your career to date has shaped you to be an asset in any DevOps team.

So if you were involved in a department that implemented DevOps methodologies across an organisation, focus on the benefits the solution had and the efficiency gains seen.  Be sure to highlight your involvement not just the team’s collective efforts. Employers like a DevOps engineer who will roll their sleeves up and get on with projects.

Above all, think clearly about how you can passionately communicate DevOps.  Employers want to see DevOps professionals who understand the bigger picture, who see the commercial benefits

 

5. Silence is golden

It’s important to know what to leave out from your CV too.  For example, the vast number of organisations implementing DevOps methodologies are innovative and ambitious.  Afterall, DevOps has grown because organisations wanted to break free from siloed methods of working in IT that did not sit with digitisation.

DevOps is all about pushing technology to its limits to drive an organisation forward and embracing the changing technical landscape.  You’ve got to show you are that person.

If you focus too much on traditional ways of working and show you still have not fully embraced the new DevOps world, you will not get far. 

What was seen as a strength previously, i.e. a steady hand, is fast being seen as tired.  Hiring managers are looking for DevOps engineers who are innovative, and entrepreneurial in thought.

One way you can show this is in the language you use.  Make sure you don’t give the impression that you are not ambitious. 

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