Top Careers For The Tech-Minded
Are you one of those people who are always had an affinity and aptitude for the technological? A lot of us have grown up in such close proximity with digital technology that it’s only natural that you get curious about how it all works, leading to a tech education that can become a highly lucrative job. However, there are practical reasons to chose tech, too. It’s one of the most future proof roles. Technology is taking over the job market, meaning that those who make the tech are, at the moment, some of the safest workers around.
But what does a tech career look like and which is the right one for you? Let’s take a look at some of the options for the tech-minded.
One of the most in-demand skills right now is data analysis and data science. Big data has allowed organizations to pull in disparate datasets from a wide range of sources. This big, centralized collection of data allows them to make more precise decisions, insights, and predictions, but only if they have the people that are able to read it. Data scientists bring the abilities needed to sort, read, and report on relevant topics, turning a lot of data into facts and figures that organizations can then use to drive their decision making.
AI/Machine Learning Engineering
Another emerging technology that has driven a lot of interest is that of AI and machine learning. These two fields are all about empowering technology to make better decisions. Already, AI is being used in such wide ways as diagnosing breast cancer to learning customer habits to improve user interactions in all manner of retail tools. A lot of organizations are looking more closely at automating all kinds of roles, from driving deliveries to providing care. Learning the tools of AI and machine learning development such as natural language processing and image recognition could help a tech-minded worker get in on the ground floor of a job market that has grown over 300% since 2015 and is only likely to keep growing.
Programming and development
One of the most universally useful skills in the tech field is that of being able to write and test code. It’s used in a range of the other jobs used here, but those who are best at it tend to find a lucrative career in programming computer and software applications. Programmers and developers can be involved in the conception of application ideas, or they can work with specific developers and software engineers, providing the coding expertise needed to turn them into a reality. In order to become a computer programmer, it’s essential to learn at least one coding language, with lessons to learn C++, Java, and other languages being relatively easy to find on the internet, often at no cost.
IT Security Specialist
The rise of digital technology has resulted in organizations and workplaces becoming a lot more efficient, precise, and organized. However, it has also made them more vulnerable. Digital technologically is consistently and eternally vulnerable to outside threats. Though tools such as firewalls and antiviruses constantly update to prevent such threats, hackers and malware engineers find new weaknesses to exploit. With such evolving threats, is cyber security a good career? If you have not only the technical skill but also a good problem-solving nature, then yes. There is always going to be work for cyber security engineers and specialists so long as organizations rely on digital technology for so many of their needs. It’s a career that involves constant education to keep up with the trends of threats, but it’s also a highly lucrative one.
Software and app development
Programmers play a large role in the creation of any kind of computer, web, or mobile application. However, software and app development tends to not only involve the process of coding, but also elements of design, prototyping, testing, and more. There are also many different development specializations that you can go into. There are those who design software to specific needs, those who design software that they then license out as a Software as a Service business, those who work specifically on web apps, mobile apps, user interfaces for digital devices, and much more. There’s always work for those who get into software and app development, but it’s important to know what kind of applications are rising in demand to find the most lucrative work.
Most organizations have an IT section that is there to help with all things related to digital technology. This team is in charge of troubleshooting, providing security advice and fixes, and generally making sure that the tech within the workplace is working as smoothly as it should be. There are plenty of roles in these teams that can lead to long, stable and lucrative careers. However, if you also have experience in any kind of management and team leadership, then becoming an IT manager can help you find a secure position in a range of companies. A lot of technical skill is needed to manage a highly technical team, but it’s important to bring leadership skills to the table, too.
Cloud technology is another technology that has emerged to become one of the most in-demand services for all manners of organizations. Since the technology is relatively new, organizations will either hire or outsource to Cloud administrators to make sure that their Cloud technology tools are implemented and working as effectively as possible. A Cloud administrator will know how to install and manage tools that can improve collaboration and accessibility of functions across wide distances. Remote working has been increasing in all industries, meaning that organizations are looking for Cloud administrators to help provide and manage the tools that allow people to work in locations far from one another. A Cloud administrator is there to ensure the efficient and secure performance of all manner of Cloud tools.
There is no one type of support specialist role. Some computer support specialists work as part of the aforementioned internal IT team. However, you can also work as a specialist for a company that sells a specific type of software or hardware, helping their customers and clients ensure that the software and hardware are working as they should be. You can also work as a more general-purpose support specialist. This might mean providing tech fixes to consumers who are having problems with the technology at home, or you can work as an outsourced service for businesses that might not have their own IT team. Many professionals in such spaces offer IT support as part of a wider managed services operation.
Widely considered a specific type of IT security specialist, these are people who are trained specifically in the discipline of hacking. Legal hacking, also known as ethical hacking, is a service that organizations pay for in order to test their own systems and cybersecurity measures. As such, a legal hacker will work to find and exploit weaknesses in hardware, software, and networks, much as a cybercriminal would. However, the difference is that legal hackers do this in order to inform organization leaders and IT security teams of those exploits so that the right steps can be taken to plug those security vulnerabilities up. Legal hacking is one of the more exciting roles in IT security, and also high in demand.
Computer systems analysts
Most organizations do not take the time to have their own computer systems custom-built. While some organizations can afford to develop bespoke software and hardware, most of them are going to want to find the best of what is already on the market. Computer systems analysts help with precisely that. This role involves finding, designing, and installing the best systems, effectively creating the IT scope of the business. It can involve helping businesses set up their digital technology systems from scratch, choosing the hardware, software, and networks that fit their needs. It can also involve helping them choose and implement specific systems and tools, such as Cloud computing or data management tools.
Web design and development
These two different disciplines play an important part in the business of helping organizations and individuals set up their own websites. There are many different ways to get into this role. Some of the less demanding ones can include becoming proficient with tools like WordPress to help design bespoke sites built on that engine. Backend web development is a lot more complicated and tends to involve coding the different components that keep the website working. Web development is all about building the website’s functionality, while web design tends to look at not only aesthetic design elements, but also factors like the user experience, with an eye on helping a website perform as well as possible in fields like visitor retention, conversion, and search engine optimization.
Being a tech nerd is a great start, but there’s time to find out what kind of tech nerd you are and to find the career that best fits. The above examples should hopefully help with that.
JR Dominguez is the technology, finance and music editor for MiLLENNiAL. When he's not writing, you can find him day-trading stocks, playing video games, or composing commercial scores.