Guide to Changing Careers – You may be considering shifting occupations if you’ve decided it’s time for a change or lost your company or employment due to the coronavirus outbreak. Learning computer skills can benefit your career (regardless of the job you select). Full-time employment in the Information Technology industry is expected to reach more than 62 million positions by 2023, making a midlife career transition advantageous. Even though it appears complicated, a career change in IT is well within your grasp. You can locate a tech career that meets your abilities, interests, talents, and preferences if you want to work in the field. There’s a strong probability that many of the soft talents you possess apply to an IT profession.
Another advantage of IT employment is that you can choose from various options. As a result, you’ll need to figure out which is best for you and devise a strategy for gaining the abilities and expertise you’ll need to sell yourself.
How the COVID-19 Affected the Public’s View of the Tech Industry
As the coronavirus began to impact and transform our lives in March 2020, tech businesses were ready and eager to adapt. The epidemic will have a long-term impact, and many of the changes we’re seeing are due to technological advancements and increased connectivity. Work, entertainment, and education are the areas that have changed the most (and will continue to change in the future).
Businesses have relocated to mansions, high-rises, townhouses, and suburban apartments. Many of their employees are learning new job skills and working methods. Although there are no specific figures on how many individuals work from home, the rising internet traffic suggests that the number is relatively large. According to Comcast, upstream traffic grew by 33%, while wireless data usage increased by 40%. Working from home has become the norm for some since the internet’s inception. On the other hand, new-wave employees are finding better work methods.
In terms of education, universities have halted classes in favor of online courses. Rice University, for example, had only three online courses accessible when the first staff member tested positive for COVID-19. When classes resumed in late March, the number of online courses was 1,906. Teachers and academics worldwide have begun to teach online, many of whom have never done so. Although online learning has been available for a while, many universities have yet to embrace it.
During times of global health concern, online shopping, robot delivery, contactless and digital payments, remote work, online learning, telemedicine, online entertainment, supply chain 4.0, information and communications technology, and many other tech solutions have shown their value. The coronavirus highlights the importance of digital preparedness, which is why many businesses focus on staying current with the latest technology and developing the infrastructure to support a digitized world.
Breaking into the Tech Industry
It’s no secret that the IT industry nowadays provides many job options. Nonetheless, only a few job seekers take advantage of this opportunity. According to Indeed, 86 percent of organizations need help acquiring digital expertise. According to some reports, just 400,000 eligible applicants are projected to be available for hire, even though over a million available tech roles exist. It’s a massive void that is filled. The best part is that you don’t need a computer science degree to participate. You only need to be an eager and open-minded student to take advantage of the numerous courses, training programs, and online communities available.
Even though people from many areas of life can pursue a career in technology, determining the best path to an IT professional can take time and effort. The truth is that getting a job in IT must be difficult. Despite the online learning choices, boot camps, and college degrees available, there are ways to get an IT career in a shorter time. You can break into IT if you are a problem solver or a creative searching for more demanding assignments and a stable job.
What It’s Like to Work in Technology?
IT jobs typically entail breaking down complex processes and ideas into manageable chunks and a significant emphasis on problem-solving. The clichéd image of a programmer huddled over a computer for 6-8 hours a day while chugging gallons of coffee is far from reality. Because solutions are not delivered by people working alone but by teams working together through action plans, life in the IT business may be significantly more fascinating and diversified. Even though they work alone, IT professionals are not “doomed” to operate in isolation. With this in mind, musicians and artists may make excellent coders since they understand what it takes to turn a notion into reality. Furthermore, IT positions are frequently flexible, appealing to various lifestyles and personality types.
In 2022, here are some suggestions for changing careers.
The IT business will provide more appealing, well-paying positions as it expands. You can get these jobs even if you have yet to gain prior experience in the tech field. It is feasible to move into it with dedication and hard effort successfully.
Is it the best option?
The first step is to determine whether this is the best option. Switching careers is a significant decision, and you must be sure it is correct. It is simple to leave your current employment if you are bored or trapped in a rut. You may feel you require a drastic change to relieve the monotony, but there may be a better solution than a new career. Consider it carefully and reflect on your actions. If your gut tells you that a career shift is right for you, you should be prepared for all the changes ahead.
Speak with your friends, family, and trusted individuals. Seek guidance that can help your career progress more smoothly. You can also look through your LinkedIn contacts for people who have the job you want and contact them. Contact them to schedule a call or to see if they’d like to meet for a quick conversation or informational interview. They can explain how they got the job and assist you in determining the actions you should take to land a similar position.
Do you have what it takes?
You might be considering a career change into technology, but how can you know if you’re cut out for it? Before working on your new goals, consider whether you’re willing to keep expanding your skill set and learning new ones.
Another thing to consider is the expense of transitioning, which is higher in this industry than in others. People who pay to master new skills needed for IT jobs spend roughly $38,500. (on average). However, because these occupations pay well, most IT career changers could repay their investment. You don’t need extensive technical knowledge or strong arithmetic abilities to work in IT; you only need a basic understanding of computer architecture, database systems, object-oriented programming, and networking. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an information security analyst is one of the fastest-growing careers.
Depending on your preferred professional path, you could dabble and test various things on your personal computer. Build your computer or website, create a database, or experiment with open-source software. You may learn a lot of what you need to know for an IT job by using your current computer skills (through trial and error).
What do you want to gain from a career in IT?
From a professional perspective, what makes you happy? Being able to use your imagination? Problem-solving? Taking care of others? How much money do you wish to make? What are some of your interests and passions? Do you wish to achieve a better work-life balance?
These are all questions you should ask yourself when researching career opportunities in the IT business. It would help to choose a career path that corresponds with your values and goals. To determine which position best suits your needs, talk to IT specialists, examine IT job descriptions, and attend instructional webinars about tech developments and IT employment. You can also attend alum gatherings and learn about the success stories of previous attendees. When it comes to research, there are a variety of methods to use.
Determine if there is a chance for a job role crossover.
It is the most critical advice for any job seeker over 50. Networking and research might assist you in determining the broad direction you wish to go. There are undoubtedly multiple obvious professional choices, but the good news is that none are required. Pick a starting point and work your way up from there. Keep track of your transferable talents and strengths as you investigate positions and specialties that will allow you to blend previous knowledge with new concepts and experiences. You can always change positions once you’ve established yourself in a company and discovered what you’re truly good at.
Finding a suitable crossover job can help you select the appropriate training courses and connect with teachers, role models, mentors, and career coaches who can offer career guidance, support, and assist you with career planning. Because not everyone will understand or accept your decision to change occupations, you’ll want to have a support structure in place before, during, and after you make the decision.
If you’re having trouble deciding which job route is correct, you can even take an online career questionnaire to help you figure out what path is right for you (or at least get some indication). Once you’ve determined which career roles you’d like to pursue, restrict your options to a few. You’ll get more significant results if you focus your job search and reskilling efforts on one general topic.
Certifications and training
Many IT positions only require confirmation that you can execute the job rather than a two- or four-year degree (through prior experience and certifications). Hiring managers only consider individuals who have a bachelor’s degree. You can determine what training you require and then enroll in that class or program. You can also pursue numerous related certification alternatives; assess which certifications you require to make yourself a more marketable job applicant. Having the correct certifications might significantly impact if you’re changing careers drastically.
Suppose you want to work in cybersecurity, for example. In that case, you’ll need to show that you’ve worked in a networking, technical support, or help desk function and that you’ve completed cybersecurity training. Hiring managers often prefer candidates with certificates such as CySA+ (CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst). If you’re new to IT but want to work in cybersecurity, CompTIA A+, CompTIA Security+, and CompTIA Network+ are good places to start. You can prove your talents by acquiring a CySA+ certification after gaining adequate experience.
Remember that some IT jobs may require you to return to school. If that’s the case, consider looking into all of your alternatives at a university. More colleges are offering online classes, which can be a more flexible alternative (especially now, amid the COVID-19 pandemic).
Determine where your skills are improved
Assess which abilities you have obtained after completing a training program and receiving the appropriate certificates. Then, compare your present talents to the requirements given in most job advertisements. If you still have deficiencies in any areas, use other career resources to fill them. In all areas of establishing a feasible job change plan, various resources are available, including articles, tools, case studies, and career guides.
Obtain some practical experience.
Internships, part-time jobs, apprenticeships, and volunteer positions can all help you gain experience in your preferred IT field if you still need to. It can be from something other than full-time employment, so look for groups that could benefit from your assistance while also allowing you to learn on the job. Most IT jobs do not provide training for individuals just starting, but some do. If you’re looking for a job, see if training is an option.
It would help if you concentrated on networking in addition to training, finding a mentor, and setting up informational interviews. Attending conferences, networking, and professional association events allows you to meet as many tech professionals as possible. LinkedIn is a beautiful place to start, but make sure your profile is correctly constructed and contains up-to-date information. Always submit a LinkedIn connection request to everyone you meet at a networking event. Knowing the proper people in the IT business who can introduce you to hiring managers can help you with your job search. Most LinkedIn job seekers find work through networking, so go to work and start building your network.
Adapt your resume to the IT industry.
If you’re reinventing your career, you’ll need to update your resume to match your IT job search. Because many talents are transferrable, much of your experience is still relevant, even in a new industry (exceedingly soft). Your leadership and organizing skills, for example, will be helpful if you make a successful career move from business administration, human resources, fashion design, or real estate.
When making changes to your resume, be sure to emphasize the talents you have that are relevant to the jobs you desire and use the same terminology as job descriptions. Ensure to emphasize your soft talents and other transferable qualities, and learn how to create a suitable career transition cover letter.
It is a Whole Industry
Big data, cybersecurity, cloud, system and network management, mobile, social media, and other aspects of technology have impacted everything from operating our organizations to socializing. When considering IT careers, we frequently concentrate on companies such as Uber, Snapchat, and Airbnb. However, the truth is that the tech sector is no longer isolated from the rest of the economy. For example, a mobile app has become essential in the service industry. E-commerce has become commonplace, and most businesses now require a website. Digital marketers must locate clients online since people search and spend time on Facebook and Instagram. Companies considered giants in today’s industries compete for individuals who can establish and maintain digital techniques and assets with young, inventive startups.
Because you’re considering a job in IT, you’ll have a leg up on the competition because your possibilities aren’t limited to tech cities or startups. If you want to avoid working for a startup, there are plenty of openings in established, reliable companies. And if you want to move to Atlanta, Dallas, San Diego, Denver, or Minneapolis, you’ll find IT opportunities there. There will be many opportunities for you to seize if you have the necessary skill sets, credentials, experience, attitude, and portfolio.
Don’t be disheartened if you’ve never considered yourself an IT expert; you don’t need to be an expert in math to program or become a cybersecurity specialist. Things are becoming easier to comprehend and more accessible. Because everyone else is learning all the time, now is always the perfect time to start. Your one-of-a-kind blend of skills will help you stand out from the crowd. Hiring managers can always find people with strong technical skills, but your professional and educational background will set you apart.