January 27, 2016
Ah, Google. A job-seeker’s fantasy. No.1 on Fortune’s Best Companies to Work For list six different times. And so desirable that people spent $12 just to watch a bad movie about internships there.
Too bad they only hire computer science majors, right? After all, the company was founded by two PhD computer scientists. And it has more than 16,000 CS majors on staff.
Don’t tell that to the nearly 17,000 Googlers who majored in things like economics, political science, or even English literature.
Wait a second. Who are these non-coding Google employees? And more importantly, how did they get in without knowing how to code???
To answer that question, let’s look at five paths into Google that don’t involve even a whiff of programming:
1. You’ve got business skills
It turns out that coding makes up just a part of all jobs at Google. Because as brilliant as Google’s engineers are, they still need someone to manage their code, sell their code and protect their code. And that’s where you, the experienced business professional, comes in.
Let’s say you’ve been a management consultant for a few years. Well, it turns out that Google needs you to help develop strategy for its new products.
Or maybe you’ve been recruiting top talent yourself. In that case, a company growing as fast as Google could definitely use your help on the HR front.
No matter what you’ve done, chances are you can find a fit between your past experience and a business role at Google.
To learn more about these different roles – from BizDev to BizOps – check out my free book on 12 tech jobs that don’t require technical skills.
2. You’re in school
But what if you don’t have any skills yet because you’re still in school?
Don’t sweat it!
Google actually has tons of internship opportunities for students still honing their skills. For instance, the BOLD program is specifically designed for students who want to explore fields like marketing, sales and HR.
3. You just graduated
Uh-oh. You’re stuck in recent grad limbo. Too far along to get an internship (Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughan’s example, notwithstanding) but too inexperienced to land a regular job.
Game over, right?
Nope. Because, believe it or not, Google actually has special programs just for you.
Want to explore a career in marketing? Try the Associate Product Marketing Manager Program.
Is sales more your style? How about the Business Associate Program?
Either way: no experience, no problem.
4. You know someone who knows someone
How does Google stay sharp even when it’s grown from a tiny startup to the second-most valuable company in the world? By letting its current employees serve as a filter for future employees.
Instead of just hiring a bunch of random people from the outside and hoping for the best, Google believes that one great hire will lead to another, so it puts incredible stock in referrals. So much so that Google interviews are 75 percent more likely to come from referrals than interviews at Apple, Amazon or Microsoft.
But what if you don’t know a current Googler? No worries. Just run this search on LinkedIn. Now you can find a friend of a friend who does work at Google. Once you do so, just have your friend make the introduction and ask for a referral.
It’s the quickest way in. And it doesn’t require a single line of code – just a little bit of social engineering!
To get more tips on networking in tech, download my free book on the 7 essential secrets of the tech job search.
5. You’re desperate
OK, but what if you don’t know anyone who knows anyone? And you’re not that experienced? And you’re not even a student or recent grad???
Your Google dream must surely be over.
Not necessarily. Because the one thing that Google relies upon, more than anything else, to keep its business growing is a steady stream of new leads. Specifically, other businesses that might want to buy advertising from it. And so Google requires a steady stream of people to do the hard work of finding those leads.
That’s where you come in. If you’ve got the tenacity to work the phones, set up meetings, and ultimately get results for the sales team, you could be just the sales development representative the company is looking for.
It’s not the most glamorous job but, just like working the mailroom in Hollywood, it’s a foot in the door. And sales development reps get to eat the exact same food and jump in the same ball pits as every other Googler!
So there you have it, five ways into the most desirable company in the world. And not a drop of code between them. Just a little hustle and ingenuity that would make Owen and Vince proud!
Jeremy Schifeling is the CEO of Break into Tech, a site for anyone who wants to launch a tech career, regardless of background. Learn how Jeremy landed jobs at Apple and LinkedIn through his free, step-by-step course.