Many of today’s IT careers require not only a four year degree from a university in a technical field, but also certifications in certain software and skills. The classes, tests and training for these certifications can range from several hundred to several thousand dollars.
When you’re just out of school and starting to pay your student loans, obtaining expensive certifications, ones that need to be renewed every few years, may not be possible. Adding to the appeal of noncertified skills, a report from Foote Partners discloses that premium pay for IT certifications has dropped 4.6 percent in the last three years.
Luckily, there are several self-taught skills that IT services employers and recruiters value when searching for a candidate to fill a position. According to Computerworld's 2012 IT forecast survey, 295 of the 353 IT employers (or 29 percent) surveyed reported they plan to increase their IT staff. To increase your chances of snagging one of these jobs, work on these skills:
5. Mobile application development
If you already have HTML 5, CSS and Java knowledge, which are skills that are usually taught in computer science programs, leveraging that know-how to mobile app development can be very useful. Using your base knowledge of web design, learning how to apply those skills to Android and iOS platforms will make you standout to an employer looking for an IT professional to oversee both their hardware and mobile network.
Having the right approach to management is a skill that is not often taught in programming courses – but should be. Being able to communicate and manage a team effectively is a quality that will set you apart from other IT professions candidates. Being an IT project manager requires a good amount of finesse, leadership, negotiation and detail-orientation. While these skills can be hard to qualify on paper, you’ll shine in the interview process.
3. Web and eCommerce
This is a broad category, but having skills in this sector will make you relevant in the increasingly online marketplace. More purchases are made on the web and the retail and goods sectors are scrambling to keep up. Being proficient in programs such as Microsoft Commerce Server, .NET, Sharepoint and even social networks will help you stay pertinent and in-demand.
2. Business intelligence
The business intelligence umbrella can include several things: business analytics, business performance management and data management. IT and business are becoming more and more aligned with SaaS and CRM tools; being in IT today means being a Renaissance man or woman. Having the skills to bridge the gap between technology and the goals of the business executives will raise your value to a potential employer.
1. Security and risk management
Important applications, information and documents are increasingly being hosted on the cloud and on wireless networks. Cloud and wirelessly hosted data can be more susceptible to breaches, hacks and corruption because of the remotely accessible nature of these technologies. Being trained on network and cloud security to protect your employer from potential cyber-attacks makes you an asset to all facets of their business objectives.
Have any of these skills? Click below to see our open IT career opportunities and get started in a great career.