Whether it is the technical résumé, promotion portfolio, or social media profile, techies need to articulate their “personal brand” message.
Increasingly, technical professionals must translate how their IT/technical skills and experience provide valuable solutions to business needs and deliver that personal brand message successfully across both traditional (résumé) and social (LinkedIn, etc.) media. Stephen Van Vreede, President of ITtechExec, a career services firm for IT/STEM professionals, says that “personal branding” often turns off many technical pros with its ties to product sales/marketing, but when done in an authentic way, it “should focus on offering solutions, the very thing employers look for.”
Van Vreede, a former telecom director who has been preparing résumés and promotion portfolios since 2001, has watched the demands of the job market evolve with the increasing influence of social media, especially LinkedIn. “Today, messaging is a key component in career advancement, whether you’re an active/passive job seeker or looking for internal promotion. Résumés still play an important role but in conjunction with your LinkedIn profile, web bio, and other social media engagement. You may want to avoid it, but doing so works against you.” As he points out, recruiters, employers, and colleagues use social media to vet their business contacts.
“Therefore, what you are communicating online is an important part of the current networking environment,” says Van Vreede. “And it is wise to prepare a strategy.” That is why ITtechExec, which caters exclusively to executive-level technical leaders, also hosts sister site NoddlePlace specifically for emerging IT/technical professionals. “Our goal at NoddlePlace is to help guide Gen-X/Y techies who until now haven’t given much thought to personal branding and online messaging, and to show them how it can be done in an authentic way.”
To do that, NoddlePlace showcases a writing team that specializes in IT infrastructure, network engineering, manufacturing, systems administration, telecommunications, programming/software development, and more. “Once the personal brand has been crafted, the next step is to build a résumé around that message and then carry that into the LinkedIn profile and beyond, like marketing briefs and personal website bios, creating a complete portfolio,” says Van Vreede, who has been quoted on industry sites like CIO.com, TechRepublic, and Dice. “Companies want to recruit top technical talent, and therefore, there is a ‘war’ for this talent. The winners in this battle will be those who can do what is often hard for techies: communicate well on ‘paper’ and ‘online.’ Get the messaging right, and opportunities are out there.”
NoddlePlace is a division of ITtechExec, a premier career services firm for technical professionals. With ITtechExec guiding the careers of technical executives, NoddlePlace focuses on the career advancement of emerging IT/STEM pros, customizing personal brand messaging for résumés/cover letters, LinkedIn profile optimization, web bios, personal marketing/project highlight briefs, and more. Both ITtechExec and NoddlePlace also assist with technical recruiter matching campaigns.