Information technology has been the most lucrative career field since 1980’s that has pervaded growth and development in professions across globe. IT industry may give you many options depending on your line of study till your graduation and post-graduation. Information technology is applied in all sectors as banking and financial services, health and insurance, railways, agriculture, manufacturing, education etc. IT industry has career options in every stream such as HR, Accounts and finance, Information Technology, Business development, Marketing and Sales, Quality etc.
1. Human Resource Management
If you are an MBA in HR or possess any degree or diploma in Human Resource management then there are multiple career options in HR. The various kinds of roles in HR include hiring, staffing, talent acquisition, sourcing, management and administration of human resources. The HR function requires recruiting and hiring employees, coordinating employee benefits, thereby, helping organization adapt to the global work environment in alignment to corporate objectives. Managing human resources department requires one to be knowledgeable in labor laws and regulations.
Following are some of the new roles in HR that have caught attraction:-
- Strategic partner where HR person contributes to the development and accomplishment of strategic business plan and objectives.
- Employee advocate where the HR person shows his expertise in creating a work environment in which people choose to be motivated, contributing and happy.
- Change Champion where the HR professional contributes to the organization by effectively implementing change strategies to assess effectiveness of HR function in achieving organization goals.
2. Banking and Financial services
Professionals with accounting and finance background are always in high demand in IT industry as accounts are not only the backbone of any IT organization but it also serves heavily to banking and financial service sectors. The overall IT software and services industry in the past year is estimated to have a 41% share of revenue through banking, financial services, and Insurance sectors. Roles for finance professionals in IT may involve the following:-
• IT Consultants
• Back-office maintenance professionals
• CA and Company Secretaries
• Accounts, finance and tax audit executives
This may involve positions from executives to managers, senior managers, general managers etc. The various relevant skills, courses, trainings, and certifications in the stream are as follows:-
- Financial modelling, CFP, FRM, MS Office, Tally
- MBA finance, CA, ICWA, BCOM, ACCA, CIMA, IFRS, CFA, CPA etc
- PGP in Management Accounting, Financial Analyst and Modelling, Financial Planning Wealth Management
3. Business Development, Marketing and Sales
People with prior experience or interest in business development, marketing and sales may find potential career in IT. IT software sales and business development is the front end customer facing roles that involve high responsibilities in establishing client relationships, achieving sales targets and bringing business to the organization. The various roles are Business development executive, Business development manager, Manager – IT Sales, Pre-sales leads and managers etc. The role involves conducting market research, lead generation, sales prospecting, qualifying prospects and converting them to profitable business.
Quality professionals having a background in quality and process improvement are also high in demand in IT industries, as customers and organizations now are highly demanding in terms of quality in software services and product deliveries. The job in software quality assurance requires assessing product readiness, level of quality, risks and results of quality audit of softwares. While a consulting role in Quality assurance involves implementing quality processes and standards, verifying adherence to organization quality standards in all customer deliveries. The various roles are Quality Manager, Quality Assurance professionals, Head-Quality assurance, QA lead etc.
Professionals interested in pursuing a career in Quality may enhance skills and gain certifications in Six Sigma, TQM (Total Quality Management), Lean, CMMI, CSQA, ITIL, ISO 9001, ISO20000, software development methodologies like waterfall, iterative, Agile and Scrum etc.
5. Information Technology
IT is a vast field enabling technology and media to manage information and data catering to all industries. Career streams in IT may be broken down into Networking, Information support & services, Programming and software development, Interactive media.
As networks are configured in many ways, network systems and data communication analysts are needed to design, test, evaluate and manage systems, such as local area networks (LANs), wide area networks (WANs), the Internet, intranets and other data communication systems.
7. Information Support and Services
Careers in information support and services involve IT deployment, including implementing computer systems and software, providing technical assistance and managing information systems.
8. Programming and Software Development
Careers in programming and software development involve the design, development, implementation and maintenance of computer systems and software, requiring knowledge of computer operating systems, programming languages and software development.
9. Interactive Media
Careers in interactive media involve creating, designing and producing interactive, multimedia products and services, including development of digitally generated or computer-enhanced media used in business, training, entertainment, communications and marketing.
|Stream||Roles||Certifications & Degrees|
|Networking||Network Design and Administration
Data Communications Analyst
Information Systems Administrator
Information Systems Operator
Information Technology Engineer
Network: Administrator, Analyst, Architect,
Network: Operations Analyst, Security Analyst,
Specialist, Technician, Transport
PC Support Specialist
Systems Support Lead
Systems: Administrator, Engineer
Technical Support Specialist
User Support Specialist
Telecommunications Network Technician
|Cisco Certified Network Associate(CCNA)
Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE)
Certified Novell Engineer (CNE)
Nortel NetKnowledge Certification
|Information support & services||Database Development and Administration
Data: Administrator, Analyst, Architect,
Management Associate, Modeller, Modelling
Database: Administration Associate,
Administrator, Analyst, Developer, Manager,
Modeller, Security Expert, DSS (Decision Support Services), Knowledge, Architect, Senior Database Administrator, Systems, Analyst, Systems Administrator, Analyst, Tester
Desktop Publisher, Document Specialist,
Documentation Specialist, Editor Electronic Publications Specialist, Publisher Instructional Designer, Online Publisher
Technical Communicator, Editor, Publications
Analyst, Call Centre Support Representative,
Customer: Liaison, Service Representative,
Help Desk: Specialist, Technician Maintenance Technician, PC Support
Specialist, PC Systems Coordinator, Product
Support Engineer, Sales Support Technician,
Technical: Account Manager, Support
Engineer, Support Representative
Enterprise Systems Analysis and
|Oracle Certified Professional (OCP)
CompTIA A+ Certification
Microsoft Certified Database Administrator (MCDA)
Associate Degree of Science in Technical Support
Bachelor of Science in Information Science
|Programming & software development||Applications: Analyst, Engineer
Business Analyst, Computer Engineer, Data
Operating System: Designer/Engineer,
Program Manager, Programmer, Programmer/
Analyst, Project Lead
Software Applications: Specialist, Architect,
Design Engineer, Development Engineer,
Engineer, QA Specialist, Tester
Systems: Analyst, Administrator
Test Engineer, Tester
|Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer
Associate/Bachelor of Science in Real Time
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
Bachelor of Science in Information Science
Master of Science in Computer Science
Sun-Java Developer Certification
|Interactive media||Digital Media:
2D/3D Artist, Animator, Audio/Video Engineer,
Designer, Media Specialist, Media/
Multimedia: Author, Authoring Specialist,
Producer, Production Assistant, Programmer,
Streaming Media Specialist, Virtual Reality
Web: Designer, Producer, Specialist
Web Development and Administration
Web: Administrator, Architect, Designer,
Page Developer, Producer, Site Developer,
Specialist, Webmaster – Level 1 & 2 (C)
|Certificate of Webmaster Technology
iGeneration™ Certified Creative Producer
WOW (World Organization of Webmasters)
Certified Professional Webmaster Associate/
Bachelor’s Multimedia Communications
Scope of IT professionals
• Professional, scientific and technical services industries (largest – computer systems design and related services)
• Internet service providers, web search portals
• Financial institutions, Banks and financial services industries
• Government agencies
• Insurance companies
• Educational institutions, universities
• Telecommunications companies
• Software Services companies
• Wholesale and retail vendors of computers, office equipment, appliances and home electronic equipment
• Manufacturing - Manufacturers of computers, semiconductors, other electronic components
• Self-employed, temporary or contract basis, Independent consultants
What do Employers Seek?
Technical Skills: A highly specialized technical skill set related to specific programming languages; database, networking and operating systems and other technologies. These technical skills can be combined in many ways.
Experience: Hands-on, real-world experience in the application of the technical skill set; sometimes, experience related to the application of IT in a particular industry setting.
Soft and Business Skills: A range of soft skills and business skills, such as oral and written communication skills, ability to work in teams, leadership and project management skills.
Formal Education: Generally at least a four-year degree, a post-graduation, often a technical degree.
Technical Skills in Various IT Disciplines
Database Development and Administration: Oracle, SQL Server, DB2/UDB, Sybase, Informix, Access
Network Design and Administration: Cisco Products, Novell Netware, Windows NT/2000, Unix, Linux
SNA, IPX, Routing, LAN/WAN, TCP/IP, Ethernet, Ethernet Switching, 10 Base-T Switching, Virus protection, firewalls, Client/server technology, Data network protocols, Internet connectivity, Intranets, Wireless, Proficiency, in basic computer applications (word processing, design and use of databases, spread sheets, desktop publishing and graphics) in basic data communications, accessing Information from electronic sources and e-mail, in basic computer user support (identifying technical support needed and providing technical assistance/training to users), in installing and configuring software programs, evaluating their utility in meeting, user needs.
Technical Support: Windows, NT/2000/98, Unix, Microsoft, Applications, LAN/WAN, Novell Netware, TCP/IP, PC Hardware.
Emerging Trends in IT
The emerging areas in IT these days are business analytics, cloud computing, data management, mobility, social media and security. According to NASSCOM HR 2013 survey, apart from IT skills, domain and soft skills are also increasingly sought by companies.
Top 5 mainstream technical skills in demand: C#, ASP.Net, PHP, Java, Oracle
Top 5 tech skills in demand: data scientists, cloud/virtualization, mobile apps, platform engineering and user experience.
Top 5 Domain skills in demand: Banking, law, mathematics and statistics, Healthcare and Economics.
Top 5 soft skills in demand: Leadership, customer interaction, communication, problem solving and presentation skills.
IT Career guide by Red River Centre, for watershed education
CXOtoday.com, IT perspective for decision makers