Interested in breaking into tech? Considering a field like software engineering, data science or product management? If so, then we have some tips to help you position yourself to succeed in the upcoming 23-24 recruiting season.
While it is too early to highlight specific application deadlines, the general hiring timeline for the tech industry starts in late summer and extends through the fall. “Big Tech” employers like Microsoft, Google, and Amazon tend to open applications on the earliest timeline. Like this past year, we anticipate a focus on intern hiring among big tech with the goal of converting intern hires to full-time. Many other tech employers will hire in the fall and will be on campus for our Data Analytics, Science and Tech Fair on Friday, October 13. While most established companies will recruit early, students can find opportunities in tech across industries including finance, media, and government. These positions might reflect the recruiting timelines of these industries. For example, Coding it Forward’s Civic Digital Fellowships, paid internships for technologists within the federal government, open in January. There is also a lot of tech hiring at startup organizations, which tend to do more “just-in-time” hiring. We hold the Harvard Startup Fair in the spring semester to highlight these later hiring timelines.
- See the MCS resume & cover letter page for resources, including MCS resume templates. Reference the MCS Tech Resume template.
- Have your resume or cover letter reviewed by an adviser when drop-ins resume in the fall Monday-Friday from 1-4pm. See the “Talk to an Adviser” portion of our website for more information.
Referrals and Making Connections
Tech companies sometimes incentivize current employees to recommend or refer candidates for open roles. However, getting a referral may not be as impactful on your application as it has been in the past. Companies such as Meta and Google will accept referrals, but the feedback from recruiters is that they are most impactful if the person knows you well and can speak to your technical skillset and experience. Whether or not you have an existing connection, talking to someone at the organization to which you plan to apply helps to provide insight into opportunities and prepare you for the application and interview process. To pursue a referral or build a new connection, start by setting up a career conversation with an alum, fellow student, or other professional. You can utilize the resources below:
Tech Interview Prep
- What is it? The technical interview usually involves solving problem-based coding challenges in a programming language of your choice, while being evaluated by an engineer. For software engineering, this is mainly data structures and algorithms based. Data and Product Manager roles will have different focuses for their technical assessment.
- What are they looking for? They are trying to assess your technical knowledge as well as your reasoning and analytic skills.
- How do I prepare? We recommend practicing over the summer both on your own and with friends, and alumni.
- Prep questions with Leetcode
- Sign up for a mock interview with an alum in MCS Firsthand Advisers
There are some tech programs designed for first year and sophomore students who have less computer science coursework and/or technical experience. Read more about these special programs here. For more information about the product management internships and entry level programs, check out the APM list.
Review the recording of the Tech Recruiting Job & Internship Success webinar for more detailed information and join the Recruiting and Employer email list for updates and employer-specific event and recruiting information.