A career change to IT? Here are 5 things you should know.

IT is one of the most exciting and well-paid industries, and it’s no wonder that many people are looking to change to a tech career. The rewards are limitless but as with all career changes, switching to IT can be a challenging process. Here are a few tips that can help you with your journey:

Take certified courses

Many people might think a short online course is enough for them to slide effortlessly over into a more technical role. Whilst short courses are helpful and in some cases is enough to get your foot in the door, unfortunately the competition is fierce, and you need as much leverage as you can to compete with experienced professionals. More structured and lengthy courses are taken seriously and show the effort and commitment to your new career path.

Be prepared to do a lot of self-study

Certified courses will help you immensely but if you really want to stand out in the crowd, self-motivated study is the way forward. It won’t be a smooth sailing process and learning all the tech lingo can even appear scary but persevere and your skills and knowledge will be at a decent level in no time.

Be willing to start from scratch

When transitioning into any new career, sometimes you will have to take a step back before you go forward. You will be fresh in the field so you have to be mindful that you might not get paid the same as your current or previous role. You will most likely receive a lower salary than your current package but remember that this isn’t permanent. Your general life experience and transferrable skills from previous work won’t go to waste. You should be able to propel yourself forward in your new career once you’ve started.  

Try alternative routes

You might not be able to jump right into your new dream role. Hiring managers may not be willing to invest in you and applying what you’ve learnt on paper can be challenging if it’s your first time. An alternative route to get your foot in the door can be a good start before jumping into the deep end. As an example, if you want to be an IT Business Analyst, you could look for jobs such as an IT Project Administrator or Co-ordinator to start with. You can build up your experience and knowledge and by the time you’ve progressed into the role you want; you will be able to execute it with confidence.

Be patient

Your career transformation won’t take place over night. It will take some time and dedication. Even after you have achieved your certifications, the job search will be a journey in itself. Your first role in IT might not even be the role you aspired for. This is all part of the journey to achieving your dream. You must remain patient and logical during this time. It’s important to see the bigger picture and everything you are working towards is for the long term.

Technology covers so many different areas that it’s impossible to generalize each person’s journey.  Every person’s situation is different, and some will get there quicker than others. In many cases, switching to an IT career can be a long process, and without the passion and motivation to succeed, it can be difficult to get your foot in the door. You have to work that little bit harder to prove you are the right person for the role and that you are just as capable as someone who has worked in the industry for a longer period of time.  However, once you break through, it can be an extremely rewarding experience.

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