4 answers

Suggestions for job hunting in SF with no industry experience

Asked South San Francisco, California

My name is Chiara and I'm a biomedical engineer from Italy. I've done a double master degree program with my university in Italy and UIC in Chicago. Now, I'm on OPT (Optical Practical Training) working permission and I moved to San Francisco looking for great opportunities to start with. I do not have internship, but I had a lot of research experience and a strong background in problem solving. #research #engineer #biomedical #sanfrancisco #suggestions

4 answers

James’s Answer

Updated Portland, Oregon

Apply, apply, apply! Go for jobs that might seem outside of your experience or skill level. Go for jobs that might not be exactly what you want right now but will help you gain experience. Look into internships if you can afford working with little/no pay to gain experience.

When I switched fields and started looking for a job in the software engineering field, I had a goal of where I wanted to be in several years. But I knew in order to meet that goal I was going to have to get my foot in the door somewhere. So I applied to as many positions as I could and ultimately took a position that wasn't my end goal, but was a jumping off point. I was only there for a few months, but I gained a lot of experienced and was also able to make an impact at the company before moving on.

Congrats for your achievements and thank you for your suggestion! This is exactly the direction I'm taking right now, I want to get my foot into the door somewhere and then I'll prove my skills. Thanks

Joseph’s Answer

Updated Long Beach, California

Hi Chiara,

1) First thing is to build a resume. Recognize that you will probably not crank out a perfect resume in one sitting. Regard your resume as a living, evolving document and in the back of your mind be thinking of how to make incremental improvements. If necessary, get professional help from reputable outfits such as JobScan to get you started.

2) Once you have a decent resume (doesn't have to be the final, perfect version!), start your search on Indeed.com, glassdoor.com, which are the best job boards. You can set up daily or weekly email alerts which deliver to your inbox lists of new jobs as they become available. Wherever possible, apply through the job board, or directly on the company website. Avoid dealing with 'headhunters' who scavenge from these sites, because they make a living by taking a cut of your initial salary.

3) Join LinkedIn if you haven't already. Invest effort to build the best profile you can that shows off your education, skills, and practical ability. Include a nice portrait photo of yourself. Like the resume, the profile is an evolving document. As you build it incrementally, you can can update your resume, and vice versa. Build your network. Connect on LinkedIn with people who have the jobs you want to get. Send them an introductory message telling them who you are and why you would like to connect. Don't be afraid to ask, people are usually quite willing to connect. Connect also with 'talent acquisition' recruiters that work in this sector. LinkedIn will also suggest jobs that are consistent with your profile.

4) Join meetups of other people who share common interests in your field.

Good luck, I hope you will find a job soon!



Thank you very much for all those amazing advice! I'm working through those points Thanks again
Si figuri.

Nicole’s Answer

Updated Sacramento, California

When I was starting my job search with biomedical engineering with no industry experience, I started by applying to internships and small biomedical start-ups! Try to leverage your biomedical engineering network to find opportunities (it's better to be referred by a person than to just submit an online application) Best of luck!

Thank you!!
Hi Chiara, My advice would be create a succint resume with relevant experiences relatable to your desired job. Network extensilvely with people in your company of interest and keep applying to internships, contract, full-time etc. In the meanwhile try gaining some probono experience if possible in your area of interest. Remember most people do not have any industry experience till they land their first job. Stay positive! Good luck!
Thank you for the advice!!

Emmi’s Answer

Updated Portland, Oregon

Hi Chiara, you have received some excellent advice already. One thing that I found very helpful was volunteering in the areas I was interested in; I am in biomedical ethics, and made some great connections and experience volunteering at the Children's hospital and doing research for the emergency department. This is a good idea if you are interested in further grad school education or research as a next step, because it will give you some robust local experience to add to your resume, and you will meet people working at the places that interest you.

Start-ups can be a great place to learn, but they often don't have the most structured approach to training so you may have to create your own fun. Most larger organizations have a number of entry level positions with standard training and operating procedures, and even if your first job is not your dream job, it will give you the opportunity to learn about other roles and positions in the organization, and meet the people who c an teach you how to do the job you want. Best of luck! Rock on!

Volunteering is a great idea and I'll check the Children's hospital as well. Thank you for your help!