IT is a magnet for millions of job seekers. Strong salaries, in-demand jobs, spectacular growth, and an opportunity to make an impact are just some of its advantages. The sheer number of options is confusing, though. Should you become a web developer, an information security analyst, or a network architect? Here are eight tips to help you build a career in this exciting industry.
Identify your own strengths. To choose the right avenue, you need to understand your values, interests, soft skills, and personality. For instance, if you detest teamwork, you should find a job where individual effort matters the most.
Evaluate your strengths and weaknesses with self-assessment tools. Today, there is no shortage of career tests on the internet. They allow you to understand your personality type and create a preliminary list of fitting jobs. You may also work with career development professionals.
Make a List of Possible Occupations
Now, it is time to get organized and polish your master list. Narrow it down to 10 – 20 options. Here is how:
- Create a blank document and type in jobs highlighted by several assessment tools. These will be your occupations to explore.
- Identify jobs you know most about and jobs to research.
Research Careers on Your List
Google job descriptions and requirements for each position, including education, training, and licensing. Discover opportunities for advancement. Using official labor market information, you may find out the average salary and job outlook.
Create a Short List
Now, you have enough information to make the list even shorter. Delete the careers that no longer look appealing or suitable due to educational or other requirements. In the end, you should have 2-5 jobs left.
Conduct Informational Interviews (If Possible)
Do more research, but increase its depth. Arrange to meet with professionals working in your target occupations. Collect first-hand knowledge about the careers. Reach out to your network contacts on LinkedIn to find such people.
Make Your Career Choice
At this point, you will probably be ready to pick your perfect occupation. Choose a career that is likely to bring the most satisfaction based on prior research. You may change your mind in the future, and this is perfectly normal. Many professionals switch careers at least a few times.
What are you hoping to achieve in the short and long run? In the short-term scenario, goal setting will help you chart the right course, so you eventually land the dream job. Long-term objectives are your achievements in 3-5 years.
Base your analysis on the previous research. Learn more to fill in any gaps concerning education and training requirements. Think strategically.
Write a Career Action Plan
This is your roadmap. A career action plan contains the steps you will take to attain your goals. It is your strategy to get from point A to point B and then to C and D.
Begin by writing down the objectives for the short-term and the long-term. Then, work how the steps necessary to achieve each one. Note down any barriers as well. What could potentially stifle your progress?
Does this sound daunting? Working out a career plan is time-consuming. However, its importance may not be underestimated. When you know what you want, forging a path is much easier.
Job Diversity in IT
Today, information technology is found in any industry from retail to healthcare. You can find your dream occupation in an insurance firm, a bank, and an aerospace company, etc. IT provides the tools and infrastructure necessary for any organization to work and grow.
Job roles are also varied. All modern industries need multimedia, software, hardware, and business applications. The work of developers and designers is crucial for streamlined workflow and innovations. At the same time, companies need someone who can manage the inner workings of their corporate systems and provide support.
To conclude, roles in the IT industry are extremely diverse. These jobs are not limited to giants like Facebook, Google, or IBM. Follow an organized process to identify the position most suited to your educational background, skills, and personality.