These are some of their responses on how to gain valuable experience, to enhance your prospects and gain your dream job:
Administrator at a Global CRM Implementation Company:
“One way to expand your CRM experience, is through volunteering. It’s a good deed that also looks great on your CV.
There are some great not-for-profit organisations out there, that could really benefit from assistance that a good Administrator could bring to the organisation. Not to mention it also offers you the scope to work on multiple projects that differ considerably in size and industry. The salesforce.com foundation might be a good place to start when it comes to volunteering your services”.
Business Analyst / Certified Salesforce.com Administrator for a Global Medical Company:
“Catchafire.org currently has several projects for Salesforce.com Administrators. Of course, these are all pro-bono opportunities, but they can provide great experience and they need help!”
SFDC Consultant at Independent Cloud Consultancy:
“The single most valuable activity I found to prepare for making a transition from SME to GE is to network with people who are in the role you want, both in and out of Salesforce User Groups.
I reached out to several companies in my area that are Salesforce.com customers, had a global presence, and had someone in a position similar to the one I was to migrate to and set up a shadowing / knowledge share / interview meeting. This was an invaluable resource to better understand the playing field at the global level in all areas. This was only achievable by asking a high volume of well-prepared questions. I have found success with simply holding lunch meetings with people who had the experience I was looking to acquire and asking basic, general questions that don’t infringe on confidentiality. This helped prepare me with a good foundation for making the transition.
Shadowing and knowledge sharing with people currently in the role you want to migrate to is often the best way to prepare oneself for the challenge of making the transition. Not everyone has the time or willingness to share their experiences however if you are persistent and patient the right person and opportunity always presents itself”.
Client Engagement Manager at a CRM Consulting Company:
I found a lot of information is already out there if you know where to look. From access to the salesforce.com developer forum; online courses; free training material, such as those found on YouTube and iTunes or even wiki docs”
Finally, industry forums and online groups are a great resource. The key is finding those specific to your needs and then seeking out like-minded people to chat with; exchange ideas, tips and best practices.
It might take awhile before you start to engage with such individuals, but it is a small price to pay for those nuggets of gold that really kick start your knowledge and learning process. Patience and perseverance are essential”.
We would also recommend engaging with a reputable recruitment consultancy who specialise in the industry you are looking to get into.
If you can demonstrate that you are hardworking, trusted and reliable, your recruiter should be able to make introductions to companies in your chosen industry, where you might be able to gain hands-on experience and increase your skill set by offering your services on a voluntary basis.
Image from http://www.freedigitalphotos.net