How to make your GitHub stand out
Tips and tricks on how to make your GitHub more memorable to employers

Posted on Jul 28th, 2020 by Ellie

TL;DR

  • Add as much information as possible to your GitHub including bios, readmes, abouts - these should have links to projects/blogs/websites if possible
  • Commit code regularly (don't have months and months with no new projects)
  • Name projects consistently
  • Add an organization (if you have one) & profile image
  • Look at other peoples githubs for inspiration!

When looking for a job in Tech, the first place potential employers will look is your GitHub.

Having spent a lot of time reviewing peoples code (much like a hiring manager would) I thought I'd put together a few tips on how to make your GitHub stand out and catch the eyes of potential employers...

Green is good!

green-is-good

The more green on your GitHub landing page, the better. This shows that you're actively coding, learning new things and keeping your code skills fresh. There are a plethora of free online courses you can do, projects you can start and apps you can build to ensure you're continually learning (little and often is key).

Always push code to GitHub - the more projects you've built means the more experience you have coding, which in turn makes you more employable.

Here is a list of app ideas to get you going.

The more easily accessible information is - the better

link-scaled

When employers are going through cv after cv and GitHub profile after GitHub profile, they haven't got time (or the will power) to clone down your repos, install your dependencies and spin up your apps.

So where possible, add links to GitHub io pages in your repo descriptions/about sections (making them easily clickable). Add info about why you made the app and what the app does as well as any pictures you have of your app to your Repos Readmes.

Adding these details saves time for potential employers and helps bring your GitHub (and you!) to life. So the more detail the better.

Keep naming conventions consistent

When people start out on GitHub they are often finding their feet with personal style and won't have learnt about camelCase vs kebab-case vs snake_case vs PascalCase.

camel-space-case

When I first started out on GitHub I was terrible for this. With projects named things like "MytoDoApp-attempt_3065-ARGHHH".

Fine for a beginner, but if you're trying to make your Github look more professional choose a naming convention and stick to it! If you're consistent in how you name your projects, employers will be more likely to assume you have the same attention to detail in your actual code.

  • Read what stack overflow has to say about GitHub naming conventions here
  • Read more about naming conventons more generally here

Add group projects as organisations in your GitHub bios

organisations-scaled

Employers instantly see this and see that you can and have worked in a team. Add links to Blogs or websites you have made here too.

Remember - the average person has an 8 second attention span (according to a dodgy study you should probably take with a pinch of salt) especially if they have a lot of GitHubs to go through (most of which will be your competitors), so offer up as much information as possible.

Add a profile image 

It doesn't have to be a photo of yourself. It could be a cartoon, it could be a beautiful landscape, it could be an inspirational quote - as long as it's different from the generic GitHub avatar, it will make your profile more personal and memorable.

github-scaled

It can also be a way to sell yourself. If you're creative you could design your own avatar or you could add text here describing something important to you.

Look at other peoples GitHubs

It took me a long time to realise you could do this when I was starting out, but it's a great way of seeing what other people are doing, sharing work and getting inspired. Tech is a community and people often Open Source their work. So take a peek - it might inspire you on things you could add to your profile, or projects you could make in the future!

Here are a few stand-out profiles from some of our Returners:

Remember: Don't make potential employers search for information about you and your work because they (probably) won't. If you've done something cool - show it off!

And if you've completed all the above and your Github's looking slick as can be... you could always find new and novel ways to shake up your GitHub: The GitHub Profile Trick

Good luck!