If you’re trying to find a great job in Utah, you might be under the impression that you need to know how to write computer code or have a medical degree. In reality, no matter your skill set, Utah could be the best place in the U.S. to launch a career today.
“Utah has had the fastest-growing labor force of any U.S. state since January 2010,” notes a recent Wall Street Journal article. And during that time, the state’s labor force grew at three times the pace of the national average.
Even in the midst of a labor and employment boom, one challenge is simply knowing the types of opportunities available.
For example, BioFire Defense is a Utah-based firm that blends the lines among the technology, health and biotech fields. Creating and selling equipment that detects pathogens and emerging infectious diseases, BioFire Defense provides job opportunities in areas like manufacturing, engineering, software development, sales, marketing, IT/IS, accounting and more.
So even if you can’t write code and you don’t have a medical degree, you can enjoy benefits akin to the healthcare or technology industries like potentially lucrative pay and job security, all while making a positive difference in the world.
So if you are trying to break into Utah’s thriving job market and don’t know where to start, here are some tips for helping you land a great job.
Develop your skills
Whether you are a math whiz, you enjoy developing ideas or you like to build things with your hands, take advantage of educational options available. Utah has traditional universities, vocational training, business schools, private colleges and more. Many allow you to earn professional certifications that can boost your hiring qualifications even as you work toward a degree.
In the aforementioned Wall Street Journal article, Davis Smith, co-founder and CEO of Cotopaxi, explains he located his company in Utah because of the young, growing and well-educated population.
“There are 200,000 full-time students that live within a one-hour radius of our office here in Salt Lake,” he said.
As with most job opportunities, it often comes down to who you know, not what you know. If you want to work in healthcare, for example, network with others in the field, both online and face-to-face. Finding a well-connected person in the healthcare industry who can act as a mentor will go a long way in boosting your job opportunities.
As for online connections, the Center for Allied Health Education suggests creating a professional social media profile to network with healthcare professionals. Include a resume, a professional-looking photo and recommendations from former teachers and employers, if possible. Time spent on a carefully crafted LinkedIn profile might prove to be the difference in whether you’re hired for a particular job.
Also, remember that potential employers will most likely do a web search of your name and view your social media profiles, so be mindful of what you post.
Even if you've never had a job in biotech, healthcare or at a tech firm, there are ways of ensuring your resume stands out above other potential candidates. Anything that highlights your experience or interaction with working professionals can give you an advantage with potential employers, according to Top Resume.
This might include volunteer opportunities or internships to gain hands-on experience. Part-time or temporary positions can also help you gain a foothold and can help you learn about available opportunities within an organization or industry.
And remember that a single company often has diverse needs and opportunities. BioFire Defense currently has openings for interns with knowledge of chemistry, biochemistry or molecular biology. For other openings, they need people with writing and communication skills, and individuals with attention to detail and fine motor dexterity.
For workers in Utah, the opportunity has never been brighter for the chance to find a quality career with good working conditions and great benefits. If you are resourceful, think outside the box and are passionate about what you do, apply for a position with a progressive company with a bright future like BioFire Defense.