What Tech Job Is Right for Me?October 12th, 2022 — Revature
Employment in computer and information technology (IT) occupations is growing faster than average, with an expected growth rate of 13% between 2020 and 2030, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Because computers and IT are deeply integrated into every profession, it’s no surprise that IT professionals are consistently in high demand. But with a vast array of different career paths, exploring which tech job is right for you can be challenging. Fortunately, there are technology training programs that can help align your aspirations with in-demand tech skills to start you on your career journey.
How Do I Know What Job Is Right for Me?
When you begin exploring career options, where do you start? No doubt you tried a web search, perhaps reached out to former colleagues, or found videos of professionals talking about their fields. Given the range of resources with career advice, finding the right ones can be overwhelming. A good way to begin is by learning about the most in-demand tech jobs and exploring how these positions may align with your professional goals.
In-Demand Tech Jobs
These are some of the most popular positions in tech:
- Description: Software developers are hands-on creators who spend much of their time building websites, apps, and software for employers. Organizations rely on their expertise to analyze a company’s tech needs and offer recommendations for software upgrades to existing systems. Software developers are accountable for the continued functioning of programs, meaning they’re consistently learning and adapting to new technologies throughout their careers.
- Occupation Outlook: Experienced software developers earned a median annual salary of $110,140 in 2020, according to data collected by the BLS, which projects the number of job openings for software developers to grow by 22% between 2020 and 2030.
- Description: While software developers focus more on creating software, computer programmers develop, modify, and test code and scripts to ensure that software and webpages function as they should.
- Occupation Outlook: While the job outlook is bright for many professions in computer technology, the BLS expects the employment of computer programmers to decline between 2020 and 2030, primarily due to overseas outsourcing. Nevertheless, it predicts about 9,700 openings each year for computer programmers during this decade to replace professionals who retire or change professions. As of May 2021, the median annual wage for experienced computer programmers was $93,000.
Full Stack Software Developer
- Description: The term “full stack” refers to both the user-facing side of a website or application and the back end — the server-side processes outside the user experience. While some roles are strictly either front-end or back-end, these developers work on both ends of the user experience and have a well-rounded understanding of the creativity and functionality necessary in building applications.
- Occupation Outlook: Experienced full stack software developers made a median annual salary of around $80,000 as of June 2022, according to Payscale.
IT Support Specialist
- Description: IT support specialists are problem-solvers. These positions are often customer-facing in that IT specialists work closely with individuals to help solve specific problems with computer networks, software, and hardware.
- Occupation Outlook: Openings for IT specialists continue to grow, and the BLS expects them to increase by 9% between 2020 and 2030. The median pay for experienced IT support specialists in May 2021 was $57,910 per year.
How to Get Into Tech
Once you’ve learned about the various career options available in the industry, you’ll need to explore options for getting into tech. Unlike medicine or education, a formal degree in computer science or computer engineering isn’t always required to work in tech. There are multiple ways to break into the tech industry.
Some aspiring tech professionals teach themselves. The internet offers a vast array of learning materials and tutorials. Many are free and can provide self-paced learning courses with videos, web-based software, and wiki pages on how to solve common problems. The drawback to this approach is the lack of tutoring, mentoring, and networking that come with a formal program.
Another common path for getting into tech is with a degree in computer science. College courses can teach you the essentials of programming in specific languages and equip you with fundamental theories and an understanding of how data processes function. These skills are applicable across a multitude of software languages and apps. However, an undergraduate degree takes four years to complete, includes general course requirements unconnected to your interests in tech, and can be expensive.
Bootcamps have become a popular alternative to self-teaching and the university experience. They typically require a fee and often last about 12 weeks. Bootcamps offer targeted training in the basic essentials in specific coding languages and software development. While cheaper than a formal degree, these programs can still be costly, and they may also be limited in scope.
Hand-On Training Programs
An alternative to teaching yourself or paying for a degree or bootcamp is a program like Revature’s. Revature pays associates to receive training in the specialties its clients need. The program consists of 10 to 14 weeks of intensive training in soft skills like teamwork, communication, and leadership, as well as hard skills like coding and script languages. Following a hire-train-deploy model, Revature places associates in a job with a reputable partner following their training. Associates don’t just get paid to learn a new skill — they have a job waiting at the end of the process.
Make the Switch to the Tech Sector
Experts from the National Academy of Sciences and National Institute of Standards and Technology have testified before Congress regarding the potential shortage of STEM workers that the U.S. faces. Such a shortage despite the growing number of jobs suggests the future may offer IT professionals more job security than other sectors.
Whether you’re a recent graduate or an experienced professional, it’s never too late to begin. If you’re ready to start a career in computer technology, find out if Revature’s hire-train-deploy program is right for you.