A whole range of career options wait for IT professionals nowadays, be it in software development, cyber security, cloud computing or in any other of the many branches which IT can be divided into. Additionally, Information Technology is an integral part of modern business now and every company needs an IT department to function. Therefore, it would be safe to say that IT professionals are not going to go out of work anytime soon!
Having said that, there are additional degrees which technical experts can consider to broaden the horizons of their career and take up higher responsibilities within a company. Consider the following educational courses and see which one suits your professional qualifications best.
A Management Degree
The MBA or a Masters in Operation Management program may not seem like the most related course for an IT professional, but if you have enough experience and want to take up higher responsibilities, you will most likely need one.
Not that they can in any way help you to solve your IT-specific problems, but leading and managing of a business would be nearly impossible to handle without some education in that department. In fact, Kettering University provides professionals with the opportunity to complete a Masters in Operation Management and MBA together in one joint course. Check it out on their site to maximize your time and investment in professional education.
It is quite possible that if you work in an IT company, you will be expected to fill leadership positions someday, in which case, a degree in business leadership or management would be highly effective in preparing a technical worker for the post. If you check, you will find that all successful IT companies have seniors and decision makers who had completed a business or operations management course at some point or the other.
Consider a Linked Career Path
Information Technology is divided and sub-divided into many branches, so when you have education and work experience in one field, try to get a degree in a related or linked field to further enhance your career opportunities. It will also be easier to complete such a course, as it’s linked to what you already know well enough.
Of course, this is a natural career path to take for IT professionals, but surprisingly enough, a lot of employees become so used to their current job that they simply put off taking an advanced or linked course for far too long.
Learn Web Development if You Have a Coding Background
Provided you have a solid background in coding, you will find that web development is a piece of cake! Proficiency in Java, C++, HTML, PHP, Python, etc. will be necessary though, but the job is quite simple if you are already used to more complex forms of coding involved in software development. It’s a great way to earn a freelance income while keeping your main job as a software developer at your current company.
Getting a Degree in Data Science Can Open New Doors
Earlier, data scientists had to rely on themselves for completing manual and repetitive tasks involved in data categorization, organization, and interpretation, which always had a few shortcomings as listed below.
- The chance of human error
- Wasted time and human resources
The need for data and its interpretation to predict results is now more important than it was ever before, but thanks to AI integrated automation, those problems of the early days are well behind us now. Completing a course in data management and interpretation will give your resume a boost, alongside keeping a new avenue of career opportunities open.
Getting an Advanced Degree in Your Field
In any field of business, the more you are qualified, the better are your chances of landing a promotion, as well as getting a pay bump. Experience and seniority may take precedence, but when it’s a competition among peers, the additional qualification will most definitely play a big role in IT or in any other career for that matter.
See if you cannot get a more advanced degree in whichever IT field that you are working in currently. It usually makes for better pay and promotions down the line, or even immediately sometimes, especially if you switch companies. More importantly, though, it will let you work on projects that were beyond you before.
Try Taking Soft Skill Courses
Having to work in the background doesn’t always mean that you have poor communication skills, or you have any problem speaking in public like pop culture often depicts! However, any professional can benefit from a simple course for improving their soft skills and employers prefer employees who have the necessary soft skills to work in a corporate environment with efficiency. Consider the following soft skills as they are known to be the most effective in passively helping careers along.
- Communication – When you are able to bridge technical gaps while communicating with non-technical coworkers and clients, you are a better worker
- Teamwork – IT projects in general, require efficient, fluent and well-synced teamwork
- Problem Solving – If you are in software development, it should be a natural skill for you
- Creativity – The tech field often faces problems that require creative solutions
- Time Management – Project deadlines are better maintained when you are well-versed in time management and goal setting techniques
- Leadership – Contrary to popular belief, even leadership can be taught, although innate leaders profit more from such courses
If the higher-ups find you to be a team player, a good communicator and a generally good leader, rest assured that you are one step closer towards grabbing that IT Head position!
In case you are considering launching a new business of your own, be prepared to face a lot of new responsibilities that simply doesn’t exist when you are an employee. But as long as you have sufficient experience in both the work and the business, along with the education, it might be time to consider that option as well. Even if it doesn’t work out, you will still have that impressive resume to rely on for getting a lucrative job offer.