The Road to IT Professional: Common Obstacles and How to Overcome Them
Items of value don’t come easy, and a job in the IT field is no exception. The current job market is competitive,1 which could make it difficult for newcomers to get in and secure a good job. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of 5 common obstacles you may encounter on your way to securing an IT job, and what you can do to avoid them altogether.
1. Don’t Discount the Power of Networking
Regardless of where your interests lie, it is absolutely essential for you to always be networking. 2 Who you know is important in a competitive job market and it may be key to securing a great job in the IT field. Attend conferences, take classes, and talk to everyone you know about your career goals—you never know who may be the one-degree-of-separation3 standing between you and a major IT executive.
Online networking is also an important factor. Linkedin, a social networking platform for professionals, is a great place to connect with professionals in the IT field. You can also follow tech companies you’re interested in working for someday.
2. Education Is Key
Whether you’re just beginning to consider a career in IT or you’ve been working in the field for some time, it is never too late (or too early, for that matter) to start taking classes and considering the best degree for the position you want. Most colleges offer courses and even degrees that will help strengthen your IT skills, making you a more marketable candidate for some of the top jobs in the industry. In an industry that’s constantly changing, it’s important to continue learning new skills to maintain your value and relevance.
3. Maintain the Proper Certification
Prior to applying for a new job, do your research and find out the types of certification4 that are necessary to get the position. The last thing you want is to find your dream job just to learn you’re not properly certified to hold the position, or that a certification that you have has expired. Make a spreadsheet to keep track of your certifications and their expiration dates to avoid this mishap.
4. Keep Your Resume Updated
As with maintaining your certifications, it’s important to keep your resume5 up-to-date and ready to send out when a great opportunity arises. If you’re in college, start building a strong resume now. It’s a lot easier to update your resume as you further your education than it is to try to remember every relevant certification and class you’ve taken or project you’ve been a part of.
Monster6 has a library of free resume samples for a range of IT careers.
5. Don’t Take Just Any IT Job
The IT field is pretty broad, 7 which makes it a unique career field to enter. Jobs within this field range anywhere from working the help desk at a small business to building computers and writing software. Determine the aspect of IT appeals to you most, and seek out jobs that fall within that category.
Get Started Now!
Problems will inevitably arise along the path to securing an IT job, but now you know what to do to avoid at least a few of them.