IT Career Advice from the Professionals
Taking the right decision to build your career in IT is not an easy task for many reasons. The rapid change in the IT industry due to the accelerated pace of innovation and evolution of newer technology may confuse you to select the right career path in IT. Furthermore, there are different and diversified areas of IT like Hardware, Software, Database, Networking, Virtualization, Cloud Computing, Data Science and so on. Such a wide range of options may also distract you from picking the right working area for you, as well. That is why it is recommended to take advice and suggestions from IT professionals to know the best options for your IT career path.
The following discussion is an outcome of advice from over eight thousand (8,000) IT professionals that will help you select the rightmost path for your IT career.
- Stay Tuned to Adapt the New Technology
Constant and continuous change in the IT industry is now being considered a never-ending process. New technologies and innovations are changing the paradigm of IT industries across the world in a continuous manner. As a result, the adaption capacity is highly recommended for IT professionals. For example, you may have to work as a team member of your organization and that team is assigned with a new task to move the entire business process to Cloud Technology. You must keep your eyes and ears open and be willing to learn new aspects of IT and earn the required experience to become a good fit in the IT industry.
The key to the success of an IT professional is the ability to adapt and adjust to such changes without facing much trouble. You should also have the mindset to earn certifications and join the training programs to work with the new technologies. For example, you may need to learn a completely new programming language to cope up with relatively new technologies like Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Data Science, Virtualization, Cloud technologies and so on. IT professionals also recommend that you have a comprehensive understanding of how to use new technologies to accelerate the business process of the organization you are working for.
- Enhance your Communication Skill
A significant number of IT professionals have made the mistake of not focusing on their soft skills like verbal and/or written communication. It is a wrong conception that only technical skills are good enough for anyone to move along their career path in the IT sector. According to a survey, a significant number of CIO (Chief Information Officer), CEO (Chief Executing Officer), COO (Chief Operating Officer) and CTO (Chief Technology Officer) working in the IT industry suggested the IT professionals of entry-level, mid-level and even top-level are needed to enhance their interpersonal communication skill.
It is expected that you are good at the technical field in which you are working. Still, excellent communication skills will help you to lead the team of a development project and communicate effectively and efficiently with the team members, end-users, and other stakeholders. The success of almost every business depends on the satisfaction of the customer and/or the end-users, and the IT business is no exception to that. That is why a good communication skill is so important for any IT professional to explain the details about the service or product to the end-users and take effective and immediate measures upon receiving any feedback from the client.
- Nourishing the Customer Service Skill
Satisfaction of the customer is the key to success even for IT businesses across the world. Almost every IT business has room for a job role, commonly known as ‘Desktop Support Technician’. You may misinterpret the importance of this position by looking at the job title. Still, a significant portion of the business’s success depends on the performance of the IT professionals working in this position.
You might have got an idea about the type of tasks required for this position. The key role of this job position is to serve the customer most professionally. The customer and/or end-user may or may not have enough technical know-how, but you should have the skill and experience to explain both the technical and non-technical issues to them, the way they can get it.
An excellent piece of advice from IT professionals is that you may not have the answer for every query, but you must know how to deal with such queries, even if you don’t have the answer for them. This is a technology translation task for both the support technician and the end-users, and excellent customer service skills can change the game towards the success of the IT business.
- Harness your Specialization on a Specific Topic
No IT professional can know every detail of every subject matter relevant to IT due to the large number and much detail of each topic. IT professionals recommend being a master in at least one or more specific topics. It could be a programming language, database management, network administrator, virtualization expert, a specialist in Artificial Intelligence and/or Machine Learning, a Data Science expert and many more. Though it is recommended to have a comprehensive idea about almost every aspect of IT, specialization in one or more specific topics is a must for any IT professional to accelerate their IT career.
At the same time, you must also adapt to the changes of the specific subject matter, as mentioned earlier in this discussion. IT professionals know it very well that you can never be the master of all IT related topics, but they prefer you to have special skill on one or a few IT-related subject matter.
- Be Responsible for your Skill Development
It is your responsibility to continuously develop your skill in any particular subject matter and/or the specific IT-related subject on which you have a special skill. IT professionals recommended spending a minimum of thirty to forty-five minutes after learning new technical skills. Spending time after earning an IT certification is another great way to accelerate an IT professional career.
Sometimes, an expert and experienced IT professional may help you to get ideas and knowledge about new things related to IT and/or relevant subject matter. You may find a much better way to accelerate your career in IT through discussing with other senior IT professionals. Experienced and senior-level IT professionals suggest surrounding yourself with people who are more experienced and smarter than you. Such practice will push you harder to move forward and explore the chances to be familiar with newer ideas and technologies.
- Stay Focused on Quality, Not the Quantity
The most difficult part of an IT career is to stay focused on the quality of the job you are responsible for. You must put the best of your effort to complete the assigned task in a perfect manner. It is not uncommon for IT professionals to mess up with the task they are assigned for. The most important part, in this case, is to admit the fault and at the same time develop and deploy a new plan and/or strategy to correct the mistake.
Before being responsible for any project work, you must have enough confidence in the skill and experience of the relevant subject matter. Experienced IT professionals always recommend not being part of any task where you do not have adequate knowledge, skill and experience on the relevant subject matter.
- Relate your Job-Role With The Business Process of The Organization
Five working days from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm may not work out effectively if you failed to relate your task with the purposes of the business process. It does not necessarily have to be an IT business, but it is important for you to understand the business. In the case of IT professionals, the priority of relating the job role with the business gets higher priority than the other business. The IT industry is one of the most fast-paced, tech-driven places, where you should have a clear understanding of why and how your accomplished task helps the business.
- Be Speculative About Your Career
To become a successful IT professional, you should concentrate on the subject matter you are passionate about. A significant number of entry-level IT professionals make the mistake of chasing after the salary structure rather than their preferred subject matter. According to experienced IT professionals, both the recognition and money will come to you once you can settle yourself at the right place with the right job role on the right subject matter. This is where careers in the IT industry differ from other industries. The organization you are working for could also get the most out of your sincere effort once you know why and how to be speculative about your career.