You've finally done it.
After weeks (or months) of writing and rewriting lines of code, you've finished your project. It might not be pretty, and there might be several bugs left to resolve, but it works.
You're excited, you're motivated, and your future as a professional developer or engineer seems that much closer. You want to capitalize on your momentum and keep the ball rolling, but how?
Below, we'll walk you through a few potential next steps. Coding projects are valuable tools, and with the right know-how, they provide opportunities for personal and professional growth.
1. Expand on your project in a workspace
With code, a project is never done. Even once it's fully functional and you've eliminated all the bugs, there's always room for new features and optimizations.
Workspaces give you a chance to explore these possibilities. Bring your project into a workspace to experiment with new methods and algorithms to see what works and what doesn't — all without worrying about breaking things. Create a workspace to get started.
2. Get feedback from other learners
Having trouble coming up with ways to improve your project? Try reaching out to other learners on our forum! You've got an entire programming community at your disposal, and it's a great resource for valuable insights.
As an example, take this learner who turned to our forum after repeatedly running into errors while building an appointment planner project. Several people offered advice, providing code snippets and tips for how to identify the source of the error.
But you don't have to wait until you run into a problem before reaching out to the community. It's also an excellent source for new ideas. After copying your project into a workspace, drop the link in one of our projects threads on our forum and ask for tips. Who knows? Your code might even help someone else with their own project!
3. Showcase your project in a portfolio
Along with providing opportunities for you to build your skills, projects can also help you land a job. In fact, they actually play a huge role in the job-hunting process.
Projects serve as tangible evidence of your programming ability, so developers usually upload them to a portfolio to submit with job applications. You can also share your portfolio with your friends to show off your cool coding skills or add it to your LinkedIn for more visibility.
If you don't already have one, here are some tips for building a technical portfolio.
4. Share your project on GitHub
GitHub is an online repository that millions of developers use to share their work and collaborate with others. Like our forum, it's a great place to get tips and insights from professional developers, and you can also use it to share your projects.
Unlike your portfolio, which should generally contain only your best work, you can use GitHub to store multiple versions of the same project. That means you can upload new versions of your project as you create them to illustrate your progress over time.
You'll also need to learn Git to use GitHub, which might give you an edge in your job search if the position involves working with a team of developers.
5. Prepare for interviews
How well can you walk someone through your project? If you haven't tried, now's the time.
Presenting your projects to your friends and family is a great way to prepare for interviews. Your interviewers will typically ask about your past projects and experience, so rehearse until you can confidently explain the problem, your solution, the steps it required, and how you decided on them. This will help show that you know how to put your knowledge to good use.
It'll also help you prepare for technical interviews. These interviews involve solving coding problems, and you might even be asked to write your solution on a whiteboard. Presenting your projects gives you a chance to practice beforehand (and reinforce your knowledge), so you'll feel more confident as you outline your approach.
6. Choose your next project
They say you never stop learning, and learning how to code is no different. There are always new languages, new tools, new skills to learn. Once your project is polished and perfect and placed in your portfolio — move on to something else!