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How to Break Into the Technology Industry
So, you, coming from a non-tech industry background, have decided to switch industries. The booming advancement and inspiring stories coming out of the IT and technology sphere may be the reason for this move.
Who can blame you, though!
The tech industry is thriving. It has witnessed great change over the years as technology itself continues to improve and evolve.
Computers are everywhere, and the world is coming very close to this statement in the literal sense! On an essential level, they are meant to give ease by providing answers to complex mathematical and logical problems that would take an average human an incredible amount of time to process. This analogy is valid across multiple industries that hope to achieve success and operational efficiency.
The Technology Industry: An Overview
Tech-literate people are a necessity. They are leading the way for new, meaningful innovations in the world, that impact everyone. Tech jobs have become some of the highest paying in the world and it will continue to be a hot field, attracting progressively more to the space.
But what about you, as an individual, who has no tech background or any IT certifications under their belt, having worked for most of your professional tenure in a non-tech environment?
The good news is, you can still be a part of it. Even though it is seen as one of the most competitive professional spheres, the number of computer science graduates and qualified candidates in the world is far less than the number of technical jobs available. According to a prediction made by the Obama White House, there are expected to be 1.4 million computer-science related jobs in the world by 2020, and only 400,000 computer science graduates to fulfill them. This puts you at an advantage.
By carefully determining what you need in order to step into the tech industry, you can easily land a job. Yes, it may be somewhat complicated, since information can be overwhelming for many. But nevertheless, it is not as difficult as you would imagine.
Allow us to guide you.
Analyze the Job Requirements
Before you can begin to make strides towards achieving your dream job, you must first analyze the job and your own competencies. Check out some of the job postings from the tech industry and look at the job requirements.
It is often perceived that the tech industry is full of nerds who sip coffee and/or Red Bull/Monster all day, writing computer code. You’d be right to think of them as wizards, because they are that, in their own respect. But the good news for you is that computer sciences and the tech space is not all about writing code or working hardware components.
It is also about solving complex technological situations, finding new and efficient ways and methodologies to implement in the workplace, and being able to communicate with the non-technical upper management on behalf of the technical staff.
Read up on the Latest Technology Trends
Even if you are not capable technically, you can appear to be by simply keeping tabs on the latest trends in technology. Your interpersonal skills can give you a big advantage in finding a tech-related job. It is important to be able to hold your opinion in a group full of computer geniuses who know their thing, and to contribute to the discussion.
Read up on what’s the hot topic in technology. For example, AI and Blockchain are currently the two hot topics that can let you survive almost any tech discussion, as long as you have sufficient knowledge. You don’t even need to know how to write AI routines. Begin by learning what Artificial Intelligence is. Learn about its sub-disciplines such as Machine Learning and Deep Learning, and the significant change they have brought in how businesses operate.
For example, recruiters are now implementing virtual assistants that interact with candidates. These AI assistants can answer queries, schedule appointments, and deliver messages. They continuously improve by learning through data gathered with each interaction.
Cryptocurrency witnessed a huge boom few years ago. While the market is fixated on the end product (Bitcoin, for example), tech pundits know the technology behind these cryptocurrencies is the real deal. Blockchain is a decentralized distributed ledger that connects everyone into the network. Each block is secured by cryptographic hash. Blockchain technology’s design prevents alternation of records.
Don’t be Afraid to Start Small
So you have found a new job but it is below your previous designation, and most importantly, below your pay grade. In truth, that may be one of the bitter pills to swallow as you transition into the tech industry.
Take this transition as a learning experience though. Work for a while, gather knowledge, and then comfortably move up the ladder. If you find the idea of giving up a successful career path in favor of venturing into an unknown territory risky, then start as a part-time freelancer.
Use Your Network
In the professional world, referrals are golden tickets. It is more likely for an organization to hire a person based on a reference from someone either within or outside the organization, than someone with only experience on their CV.
People whom you have worked with in the past can vouch for your hard-working and determined self.
Work with Tech Startups
Tech startups are built as a small family, and corporate culture is not strictly enforced. They tend to look for people who can learn and grow with the company, instead of established individuals who may seek a fortune as salary.
Tech startups are built by enthusiasts who know how to speak geek, but they are not good with business management and financial numbers. If you have held managerial roles in the past, you can fit in perfectly.
The great thing about living in the 21st century is that it’s never too late to learn anything. The internet is a vast resource. Online programs provide IT certifications to individuals seeking professional qualification from the comfort of their homes. With the right certification(s) you can have both the theoretical and practical knowledge to successfully break into the technology industry.