Technology has made rapid progress in the last two decades and now IT business is about matching proficiency in technical domains to customers’ individual and business requirements. It is important to understand the issues faced by clients and devising most effective solutions for same. At the same time, all possible improvement in existing technologies is also a prime need. Obviously then, there is a need for more and more professionals. The range of careers in IT is very broad. Professionals in this field need to deal with different aspects of this domain – computer hardware, software, maintenance, and networking. If you are a technology freak and serious about a career in this field, here are at least seven options that you can explore:
1) Computer Hardware Engineer: The job of a computer hardware engineer is to research, design, develop, and test computers and computer related equipment. At times some machines have to be developed and designed with special features for household, commercial, military or scientific use. Computer hardware engineers may also be required to administer and supervise the large scale manufacturing and installation of computers and computer peripheries. A good knowledge and professional qualifications in operational analysis, programming, mathematics and science are some basic requisites for a career in this area of information technology.
2) Software Engineer: Software technicians develop new software systems and applications and also modify the existing ones. They are the ones who actually implement the strategies laid down by system analysts and applications architects. Besides doing the coding work for the development and modifications of software, they also need to test applications during the process of development and at the final stage. In this era where innovative applications are being developed for desktop computers, mobile phones and tablets, software engineers have become the backbone of IT industry. An excellent and up to date knowledge of different languages is essential for a successful career in this field.
3) Systems Analyst: An expert in this domain has to analyze the technical and business needs of a project from the perspective of the client and offer required solutions. At times business clients may also need additional features for software or application for one or more systems in their organization – system analyst needs to ensure that these are provided in the best possible way. Once the possible solutions for developing the software and /or applications are found, system analysts document the same in form of technical specifications. Software engineers then use these specifications and guidelines to develop the actual software required. Typically, the problems that a system analyst solves include:
- Making order placing by customers more systematic on an e commerce site
- Helping suppliers minimize inventory holding costs
- Helping the marketing team understand clients’ requirements
- Helping management to analyze finance and accounts information more carefully
4) Application Architect: The internal structure of an application is referred to as application architecture. This field of IT is the science and art ensures that the suite of an application used by a software engineer to create the composite application is scalable, reliable, readily available and manageable. When such an application is sold to an organization, it can be efficiently used and troubleshooting would also be easier. An application architect needs to offer strategic guidelines for development of an app and also to maintenance teams by comprehending the apps from perspectives such as:
- Interoperability capabilities
- Performance and scalabilities
- Possible technological issues
- Lifecycle stage of applications
There is a huge demand for application architects in the IT industry at present and a very good knowledge of designing different functions of applications is essential for progress in this field of IT.
5) Network Administrator: Essentially required in all business organizations using computers, network administrators set up and maintain interconnectivity of computer systems in an office. They need to monitor and administer Local Area Network and Wide Area Network as required. In some offices, network administrators also deploy, configure, maintain and monitor active network equipment. Maintenance of file servers, VPN gateways, and intrusion detection systems is also entrusted to them. Network administrators are typically the first point of contact for employees facing any IT issues while working on office computers and laptops. They guarantee smooth and error free functioning of hardware and software across the organization and naturally get good salary packages for their job.
6) Database Administrator: A database administrator has to oversee the operations related to important databases of an office. These hold crucial and confidential business related information, payment details, details related to compensation packages for staff members and other important information that must not be available on any commonly accessed folder for the company. Database administrator is required to have an excellent knowledge of data maintenance and back up. They must develop and implement sound strategies for safe storage, backup and retrieval of files and folders containing crucial information. Database administrators stand at critical level in the hierarchy of a company and of course they do get paid well for their work.
7) Project Manager: Considered a senior level profile in the IT industry, a Project Manager monitors the development of software applications from their very inception to final development and implementation. Project Managers may have to handle several different tasks simultaneously. The chief focus is on planning of a project, customer management, project scheduling, cost estimations and budgeting, managements of IT team (comprising software &hardware engineers, application architects, and system analysts), and resolving problems that hinder project completion.
With a plethora of career options and rapid progress, the IT industry is booming and these trends are here to stay. There are many quality degree programs, like uop or other online schools, that offer great education.If you have an interest in this dynamic field, there are excellent prospects for growth and progress.
About the Author:Frank Johnson is a regular editorial contributor on technology products and services and business operation tips that help small to mid size enterprises. To know about other careers in IT, you may interact with him here