What Career Is Right For Me? (Our 2020 Guide To Finding Your Next Role In IT)
The start of a New Year always incites change. Christmas is over, the decorations are boxed up and you’ve got some time to think about what you want from the next 12 months – and ideally where you want to be at the end of it.
However, if you’re contemplating a job change, what step to take next doesn’t always come as quickly as the decision to cut back on the chocolates or sign up for that marathon you keep meaning to do.
Jobs are important and each one can provide a step up towards that ultimate goal.
But what if you don’t know what that goal is? Or even, what if you have lots of skills in different areas and don’t know which path to take?
This is really common – especially within the IT industry where there is a huge amount roles all with their own technical requirements. So, it’s easy to feel unsure about which direction you should head in.
Below, we’ll take you through the key steps involved in identifying the right role for you, so that you can get started in finding your dream job.
How do I choose a career?
Define your strengths
Rome wasn’t built in a day – nor was anyone’s career profile. You need to take things one step at a time. So, assess your strengths and make a list of everything that you can currently do.
Having your skills listed out will not only give you a good idea as to where you’re currently at but it will also help you identify the areas where you can start to expand your knowledge and look to gain experience.
Learning is key
Whether you’re just starting out or have been working for a few years and are ready to take the next step, regularly expanding your knowledge base is fundamental when working in IT.
And learning new skills can also help you decide on what you want to do next.
- If you’re new to IT
If you’re starting from scratch and haven’t worked in the IT industry before, a degree in computing or a foundation course within this area is a great place to start. Not just because it will give you a general overview, but it will also help you decide on whether it’s right for you.
After that, working in a Technical Support Role is one of the best ways to start off your career in IT as you can start to see and understand the sorts of problems that occur on a regular basis.
- If you’re more experienced in IT
If you’re already experienced in IT but are not sure which direction to take next, then learning some new skills is a great way to get a feel for what area you might want to specialise in.
There is a lot of information online which you can get hold of for free – for example on Microsoft Learn. And there also third-party short courses which you can follow as well as social groups for developers who enjoy coding for fun.
Experience isn’t everything but it helps
As well as education, experience is definitely a big part of helping you decide what you want to do. So, the more you can get, the better. It might not necessarily be a job that you have had either. Internships and graduate schemes are great for this as they will help you get a wide range of experience across different fields.
Demonstrate your passion for IT
Perhaps you’re ready to dust off your coding skills or want to start coding in a language you haven’t used before. Either way, setting yourself a challenge and then completing your own project is a great way to explore your capabilities and see if you enjoy it or not!
Any coding you do in your own time will not only look great on your CV but it’s also a convenient way to get to grips with the basics, without worrying about breaking anything.
Seek out industry experts
A lot of the time, there’s no better way to find out about a particular role than to speak to those who are already in it. Seeking out industry experts is one of the best ways to get the information you need.
And while you’re busily reaching out on LinkedIn, why not take the opportunity to build up some relationships with the people you’re talking to? Find out who they work for, check out the companies and see what they do. You never know what you might find!
Don’t want to wait? We have a whole range of quick-fire Q&As for you to browse through in our blog, like our feature with Evros Service Owner Brian Duignan who works in systems administration.
Set out your goals
Once you have a feel for what you might like to do, the next step is to set out some goals. Perhaps you have a list of qualifications you want to make your way through. Or simply what to get going on that project you’ve been thinking about recently.
Either way, now is the perfect time to start drawing up a plan so that 6-12 months down the line, you’ll be well on your way to that dream job.
Talk to us
We’re extremely experienced in matching the right candidate to the right IT role. And we can help you navigate your way to your perfect job. All you need to do is ask!
Phone: (+353) 1890 911 211
Or you can send us your CV.
Want to keep reading? Senior IT Recruitment Consultant Tom Leonard talks about what he expects to be some of the most sought-after jobs in 2020. Read our Recruitment Forecast For 2020 feature here.