How can your tech expertise help you in your career?
The market for jobs is, and always has been, an exceptionally competitive place, and to enjoy genuine success in any profession, it is absolutely critical to have the right skills and sell these in the most effective and impressive way. Some of the most helpful skills to have in the modern jobs market are those based on technical expertise.
Getting started in the IT world
If you are looking to enter the world of IT, you need to consider a number of important factors:
- Freelance vs permanent. Freelancing and contracting are common working patterns for people in IT, and it is important to understand the differences between this and permanent employment as this is a major lifestyle change. On the one hand, freelancing offers greater scope for flexibility, freedom, and even financial reward. At the same time, there is potentially a lack of security and a requirement to personally manage certain areas that an employing company would typically take care of.
- Financial and administrative support. One area in which it is absolutely critical to establish the right support is financial management. An umbrella company can be an invaluable partner in a situation like this as they can take care of so many aspects of the financial side of being a contract worker. Such organizations will provide support with a whole range of PAYE services to freelancers and contractors, freeing up time for the individual to focus on doing what they do best and actually get on with delivering the service or product for which they have been recruited.
- Professional development. While demand for IT experts is, broadly speaking, high, demand for certain skills is particularly strong, and the most successful freelancers keep a track of trends like this in order to make sure they can sell themselves in the most effective way. With data being an increasingly important consideration for all manner of organizations, database management and analysis are currently sought-after skills, while web experts are also considered highly valuable to help companies with their online presence.
- Building and growing a network. While it may not come naturally to everybody, building and maintaining a strong professional network is absolutely critical. Freelancers, in particular, have to rely heavily on who they know in order to secure new work and win new clients. Testimonials and recommendations from existing clients are incredibly valuable, so keeping in contact and working regularly to maintain strong and positive relationships is a core activity for the most successful contract workers.
Given the potential for significant financial reward driven by high demand, combined with an opportunity to apply both creative and technical expertise, perhaps it is not surprising that the world of IT is such an attractive prospect for people starting out in their career. The drawback to this, of course, is that the market for jobs is pretty competitive. Fortunately, all it takes is a bit of research and some careful consideration of all the relevant factors to set yourself up with the best possible chances of success.