There are many reasons why you might be considering a career in technology. It’s a wide, ever-expanding field that crosses over into many different sectors of work and government. It appeals to the young as it’s forward-looking and all about the new. IT in particular is seen as youthful, vibrant and dynamic. It’s also well-paid and there are many opportunities for interesting and rewarding work.
Today’s teenagers have grown up with technology and so it’s natural that the subject might be something they want to study and eventually work in. These days even the smallest businesses know the benefits of technology, but not everyone has the skills or the theoretical knowledge to specialize in it or to be able to fix it when it goes wrong.
If you want to work in technology then it’s better to take a fairly general degree initially rather than specializing too much straight off. Most employers look for graduates with a simple computer science or software engineering degree rather than one that’s specialized in game development or data analysis. That’s because for these more specialized roles they’re likely to look for more experienced candidates. With new graduates they’d rather employ someone with a good all-round knowledge and train them up on the job.
Web or app developer
A good entry level tech job is one that will allow you to learn and grow while also making an impression. As such, consider going for a position as a website or application developer. Every kind of business and service requires a website these days, so you can choose a sector that you’re interested in while still developing your IT skills. If you develop a website from scratch it also acts as a great portfolio for your skills that can be viewed from anywhere in the world.
Working as an app developer is possibly an even better way to showcase your ideas and abilities, and to grow and develop your skills. You’ll work on a number of apps, and hopefully each one will be better and more impressive than the last. You’ll also be working on the latest mobile platforms and learning how to work with relevant coding languages.
If you don’t want to be tied down to doing the same job day after day, going into the same office at the same time, and would rather manage your own schedule and work-life balance, then setting up as an independent IT contractor could be the job for you. You’ll generally be able to command a better hourly rate than you would as a regular employee, but on the down side you won’t have the same job security, or in-work benefits like sick or holiday pay. For many though the benefits of being their own boss far outweigh any down side, and working through an umbrella company makes it easy to take care of your finances and to get help with IR35.
This is a job that you could do on a freelance basis as a contractor (see above) or working in-house for one particular company. Basically your job will be to evaluate computer systems and to come up with the most efficient and cost-effective way of utilizing them. You’ll also doubtless be called upon to do some regular trouble-shooting. Eventually you may want to develop your own specialist niche area to cover as a consultant.
Managing “The Cloud” is currently one of the highest paid IT jobs, as this virtual location is where most of the world’s information is heading. Taking care of this space and ensuring that it remains secure, connected and accessible is therefore extremely important.
There are many different roles within cybersecurity, from designing and installing security systems to being a computer forensic investigator, retrieving legal evidence from within computer systems. This area is only going to grow in importance and scope as cyber threats become more widespread and sophisticated. Business, government and essential services all need to stay one step ahead of terrorists, spies and criminals using computers to launch potentially devastating attacks, and cybersecurity specialists are manning the front line of defense.
Whatever role you choose to go for, it’s a fact that science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) graduates command the highest average starting salaries. Research companies you’d like to work for, find out what kind of tech stack and coding languages they’re using, and set up alerts on job sites for job titles or descriptions you’re interested in. You could soon be on your way to a fascinating and rewarding tech career.