When you have a lot of interest in tech, it makes sense to pursue that as part of your career. But it’s not always easy to get that career break you need to start working your way up. There are several avenues you can try. This means you can choose the path that best suits you and achieves the goals you’re hoping for. So what does it take to develop a successful career in tech these days?
Education is enormously important, but perhaps not in the way you think. Formal academic education can fall out of date very quickly in the tech world. It’s also enormously expensive. Whether you choose to enroll on a degree course or you seek to become self-taught, you will have to continually update your skills and knowledge in this fast-paced industry.
There are thousands of online courses that could be all you need to plug a specific skills gap or area of weakness. Of course, it’s worth bearing in mind that some institutions and employers will not consider applicants without a bachelor’s degree. For some positions, it is essential you have your master’s.
Even if you’re leading the way in research and development, chances are there will always be something new to learn. Keeping up with new developments is easy when you know how. Subscribe to the relevant magazines and newsletters. Join online forums, and pay attention to innovator’s websites.
There are plenty of child coders that have so little life and work experience, yet they are in high demand for project work. If you have working products or apps, chances are this will be more important than everything else. It’s proof you know your stuff and can apply it in the real world. In fact, it is prototypes and apps that might attract employers the most.
Getting that first job can be easier if you’re willing to look further afield. Don’t restrict yourself to one city, one region, or even one country. Since the Canadian fast track visa launched, more and more skilled tech workers have found their dream employment in desirable cities like Toronto and Calgary.
You can always gain further experience by working on new projects. You might find local companies that are willing to offer you a couple of days pay to pitch in on something that piques your interest. Don’t forget – entry level positions that may offer no tech tasks at all can still give you an insight into how a company is run and how projects might be managed.
It’s important you network as much as possible. You need to ensure other tech-minded people in the industry know of you and what your interests are. This doesn’t mean you have to be salesy and in-your-face. Instead, use the opportunities to ask questions and find out what they’re working on. Why not visit conventions and competitions to find the people you want to approach in the future? Their advice and insights today might guide you in your career tomorrow.