While your education and skills are essential aspects of your CV, your hobbies can actually be the thing that lands you the job.
When you’re on the hunt for an IT job opportunity, it can be easy to focus more on your skills and qualifications and forgo other aspects of your experience such as your hobbies. But did you know that what you do in your spare time can actually help you get a job?
As IT professionals, many of our interests outside of work are also tech-related, and even seemingly unconnected hobbies can provide great benefits for your employability. So here are some reasons why you should invest in your free time to impress employers more than ever.
Grow your skill set and show your passion
If you only gain expertise from qualifications and on-the job-training, you probably have the same skills as everyone else. To differentiate yourself from other candidates, you can use your hobbies to cultivate unique and valuable abilities.
If you like to build computers in your spare time, the knowledge you gain from this could prove to be very useful when your next company has a hardware issue that disrupts their operations. In addition, Mashable says that your hobbies can exhibit your passion for the field, showing hiring managers that you are dedicated to what you do.
Interestingly, having hobbies can actually influence how you perform at work. For example, a study published in the British Journal of Occupational Therapy revealed that people who regularly knit actually display increased cognitive function. This boost to your brain will be invaluable when trying to read patterns in code or decipher a set of statistics.
Become more adaptable
Industry news site IT World claims that your interests can also enable you to adapt many different organisations and use your skills to give them a competitive advantage. In today’s technology-driven business landscape, almost all companies can benefit from a skilled IT professional. Combining your technical expertise and your interests can qualify you for unexpected positions, giving you a much broader range of job prospects.
Finally, the Wall Street Journal argues that being successful in your hobby, such as winning a tennis trophy or an award at an art show, can help to establish your drive to reach new levels of accomplishment. Every employer wants their staff to be motivated, so show that you can bring the same ambition into the office as you do to your spare time.
Next time you’re writing up your CV for an IT vacancy, take our resume advice and don’t skip your hobbies – use them to your advantage.