A lot of jobs exist where they just want to know you can code and assume you’ll learn what you need as you go along. Experience in their languages seems most important.
By the time I got back out on the market ten years later, I was already 35 and I was able to talk about projects, architecture, trade offs involved in shipping, etc and I was applying for mid level roles - partially because I had become an expert beginner “engineer” even though I was good “developer” and they were getting me cheaply.
Eight years and three jobs later, my engineering skills had caught up with my age and I was applying for jobs where they needed a “change agent” or “someone who could speak experience into the team”. Now, I rarely get asked any programming questions. It’s mostly architectural and soft skill questions.
But, in the grand scheme of things. There are only two reasons anyone is interviewing for a job. Either they are being forced to find another job because of a layoff or the current environment has become inhospitable or they are choosing to find another job for more money/new challenges.
In the former case, where I need to find a job now, I need my resume to be buzzword compliant so I can find a job/contract fast. I also need to be ready to for more technical interviews especially for contracting.
In the latter case, I can be more picky and find jobs where they are looking for “principal developers”/team lead type of positions and the interviews tend to be more architectural/theoretical.
On a side note, I’m not sure what I want to do next. If I choose the cloud consulting/“digital transformation consultant”/“enterprise solution architect/consultant” route. Knowing a little about everything will come in handy - including something like Graph QL.
I like the insight here about the two types of job and looking back at my jobs I think this is spot on.
There is another reason to change jobs which is for lifestyle reasons. Moving country, changing to a work from home/digital nomad would come under that. In the lifestyle case you are probably trading other factors for the lifestyle factor, so that would also more likely lead to the buzzword compliant route.