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Is an IT Job Right For You?

Becoming an IT specialist is a strategic career move. With enormous job opportunity, IT jobs provide many individuals with job satisfaction and financial security. Before switching to any career, however, it is important to understand what the job entails and whether or not pursuing an IT career is a smart decision for you.

Daily Duties of IT Specialists

IT jobs vary greatly, and professionals continue to specialize in specific areas. IT jobs include: hardware servicing, network maintenance, troubleshooting, education, and military. Professionals often work in corporations, schools, government offices, and non-profits. The main duties of IT specialists are either developmental or maintenance.

IT jobs surrounding maintenance require specialists to keep computers and networks in proper working order. To keep computers and other machines working properly, IT specialists ensure systems are updated, scan for viruses or malicious programs, and update computers’ internal hardware as necessary.

IT jobs in business usually surround the maintenance of internal computer networks. The system links computers or machines within the company in an “intranet.” It is the job of the IT specialist to join all of the devices to the network. The network is kept safe through a series of passwords, firewalls, and other methods to protect important company information from being leaked or hacked.

When computer or network problems arise, it is the duty of an IT specialist or the IT department to troubleshoot and problem solve. Specialists can teach users how to use a machine if a problem is user-related, reset passwords, and retrieve missing data. If a problem is due to malicious software, IT specialists must debug the affected computer or machine.

Necessary Skills for Success

IT jobs are often complex. Professionals who are successful must be knowledgeable about technological systems and keep their knowledge current as the field evolves. Individuals who succeed in IT continually focus on building or improving technological systems. Increasing a system’s usability and efficiency is the goal of every IT professional, no matter his or her field of specialty.

There are ten skills growing in the IT industry: programming, technical support, networking, mobile applications and device management, project management, database administration, security, business analytics, cloud computing, and interpersonal skills are the ten most demanded skills. These are the IT jobs’ area of focus.

There are personal skills IT specialists need to be successful as well. Individuals who want a successful career in IT must possess critical thinking skills and patience, particularly when a task involves troubleshooting and problem solving. Individuals must also have strong time management skills; when a network or system goes down, a company loses money. This places a lot of stress on IT specialists to get networks up and running quickly.

Most IT jobs require a college degree or years of field experience. Much IT work is learned on-the-job, but individuals looking for IT jobs must be prepared to keep their skills and knowledge up-to-date. This may require specialists to take continued education courses. IT jobs are changing rapidly and various certifications are now available. Certification programs benefit individuals who want to grow their career goals and be more competitive in the job market.