The IT industry is an ever growing, ever changing beast that is becoming increasingly interesting as technology advances by leaps and bounds. It is becoming more competitive and employers are looking for more qualifications from their candidates.
When first starting out in IT, whether it is as a first job, or from another unrelated field entirely, you have to be willing to work your way up.
If you have absolutely no technical background, you will most likely not be getting a position as a Team lead for the Tech Support Department overseeing 10 other people and doing hands on network management. It is important that your skillset legitimately translates into the position you are applying for. Five years of typing documents in Microsoft Word or sending thousands of emails does not make you an expert in the Office Suite, but it can mean that you have “written communication skills and experience”. Even if your technical skills are not advanced, there are plenty of skills that are universal, such as good communication skills.
If you are lacking professional technical skills, talk about hobbies that illustrate your general interest in technology.
If you are a techie and build your own computers at home, don’t be afraid to list that skillset even if it is just your hobby. If you were the go-to-guy for IT help at your last job because you knew about the latest technology or were very familiar with their machines and network, list that as well. Be honest and realistic about your technical involvement.
With the growth in the IT industry, a willingness, and eagerness to learn is imperative.
You may not know about the latest development in a company’s chosen software, but you have all of that knowledge at your fingertips in the form of the web and tech publications. Expressing your learning style to your prospective employers can prove to them your willingness to meet them halfway, even if you don’t have an in-depth background.
Certifications are a MUST, whether it is Network+, A+, CCNA, or any number of other applicable certs.
If you do not have certifications, you need to be willing to get them. There are employers out there that will hire someone who has a willingness to get certs, and even pay for the test as long as they get them within a certain timeframe. Even if you have a certification or two under your belt, they may require that you obtain one that is specific to their needs in order for them to maintain partnership statuses with companies like Microsoft.
With the competitive nature of today’s IT industry, work with Vaco and be prepared to compromise on your first technical position to get a foot in the door and to get that experience under your belt.
Consider a contract position because it will offer you a chance to develop some fantastic skills, or a contract-to-hire position because most likely, there’s room for growth, a learning opportunity, and an outstanding way for you to meet your long term IT goals. The IT industry is an exciting field and it is made up of people from all walks of life. When you decide to take the plunge, be sure that you are ready for it.
Shelton, Ashleigh. Tues, 14 Mar 2017. “IT is Ready for You! Are You Ready for IT?” linkedin.com. Article Retrieved from: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/ready-you-ashleigh-shelton?published=t