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I'm a mid-level web developer (4 years of experience) with most of my programming background in PHP and MySQL. Recently I have gotten interested in C# to expand my knowledge and I have grown fond of it. but I'm encountering a problem in looking for an appropriate job that reflects my interests. In the job listings I frequent (Dice, Craigslist) there are no entry level openings at all for C# programming that don't need prior experience in it. That is, I want to know if there are places out there that would hire someone who has experience in other languages but want to break into the programming language that the company wants.

The way I have my resume set up, I state that I want to do back-end programming work. Most of my web development has been frontend stuff but I am much more interested in the backend logic of building websites and programs. I am already learning C# and working on personal projects, mostly with XNA which is a multimedia framework geared towards games. However, I feel like it's good enough to showcase my object oriented knowledge which a C# .NET job would require. Besides PHP, I also know how to code in C++ picking up the object-oriented knowledge I started out with PHP. If I code a few sample websites with .NET would it be enough to get noticed by companies?

So long story short, been working at several PHP-focused jobs, have competent object oriented skills, and want to transition into C# to get hired for C# web development work.

Edited by JustCC: n/a

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Last Post by Narue
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First, beggers can't be choosers. You're not likely to end up doing what you're really interested in with an entry level job. The point of an entry level job is getting some practical experience, not landing your dream job. ;) Even if you want to do back-end stuff, it's smarter to leverage your front-end experience in getting that first C# job.

Second, job listings are depressing. Employers will ask for more than they'll accept (sometimes even the impossible). A better approach, in my opinion, is to network with the people you've met in your current job. Alternatively, hoof it to actual locations and ask if they're hiring.

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First, beggers can't be choosers. You're not likely to end up doing what you're really interested in with an entry level job. The point of an entry level job is getting some practical experience, not landing your dream job. ;) Even if you want to do back-end stuff, it's smarter to leverage your front-end experience in getting that first C# job.

Although I have had 4 years of work experience in developing PHP sites (at least 2 of those with object oriented coding) and I was hoping to leverage that for my first C# job. I'm not a total beginner in my career, just at C# programming work.

I didn't say that I'm looking for a dream job. But I want to grow my expertise and expanding my options by getting experience in other languages. If you want to shift focus to programming in X and you have only programmed in Y, what is the best way to get hired for that?

Second, job listings are depressing. Employers will ask for more than they'll accept (sometimes even the impossible). A better approach, in my opinion, is to network with the people you've met in your current job. Alternatively, hoof it to actual locations and ask if they're hiring.

Yeah, I've seen those types of jobs with laundry lists of mix and match languages and tools. I don't put too much thought of that... if a job description looks appealing I bite the bullet and send them my resume. Is it more realistic to just get hired for doing PHP, what I've always done, but at a place that's more open to using different tools, and just learn the new tools/languages at that job? I once had an opportunity to learn C# from a senior developer who specialized in that, but his contract schedule was very sporadic and he hardly showed up to the office to do his work.

Visiting the companies in person is an idea, but having the time to do that can become a problem. But I have been going to web developer meetups which are more friendly to a 9-5 work schedule.

Also I've considered offering my C# programming as a temporary internship for starting out. Someone told me you don't have to be a recent college grad to intern, and it would be useful to do when you want to break into another area in your career.

Edited by JustCC: n/a

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I'm not a total beginner in my career, just at C# programming work.

Let's not kid ourselves. As far as the employer is concerned, you're a beginner. The PHP experience can be persuasive on a resume, but the headline will be "No .NET experience!". Treat your job search as such, and you'll likely have decent results.

Is it more realistic to just get hired for doing PHP, what I've always done, but at a place that's more open to using different tools, and just learn the new tools/languages at that job?

That's one option, though you risk not hitting your target. That's not to say that a job where you wear a lot of hats won't help, but even in those jobs people still tend to specialize, so you may be plugged into a PHP hole against your will and be right back where you started.

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u're a beginner even with all ur certs
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Humble yourself. I feel you're asking for so much recognition just because you know OOP. No employer considers that and in a work place, there is hierarchy so even if you know so much, you may just find yourself under a bloody novice.

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Thanks for the answers everyone. I mention OOP because I know working with a .NET framework requires good knowledge of OOP. But I know that it's already a given to have without anyone needing to ask for it.

However, I would like this question also answered, which is the primary goal for me.

If you want to shift focus to programming in X and you have only programmed in Y, what is the best way to get hired for that?

And to clarify, by "have only programmed in Y" I mean professionally. In my spare time I have learned how to code C# and have done several C# projects in Visual Studio.

Edited by JustCC: n/a

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But I know that it's already a given to have without anyone needing to ask for it.

You'd be surprised. In my experience conducting interviews, confirming foundation knowledge is best done as a first pass, even if competent candidates might feel insulted by it. It's amazing how many bumbling yahoos manage to get through to an interview. ;)

However I would like this question also answered:
"If you want to shift focus to programming in X and you have only programmed in Y, what is the best way to get hired for that?"

Have a good portfolio of either your skills with X, or a portfolio of your experience with Y that will transfer over to X. Be able to successfully convince someone that despite not having experience in X, you can become competent at it quickly due to experience with Y.

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