If you’re an IT pro on the job hunt, there are fields to look into that might surprise you.
The push toward greater operational efficiency and more effective communication has seen diverse industries increase their IT infrastructure budgets, meaning IT pros are more in demand than ever. These five fields aren’t the most obvious sectors to look at for IT positions, but that’s exactly why you should consider them.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the healthcare industry, which was one of the few industries that came out of the recession relatively unscathed, is poised to grow further in the coming years. An aging Baby Boomer generation and the Affordable Care Act, which has made healthcare accessible to more people, have increased the pressure on medical facilities to streamline their operations.
Additionally, the federal government has mandated that the prevalent ICD-9 medical coding system be upgraded to the ICD-10 version by October of 2013. This entails an addition of close to 70,000 new codes, which necessitate sweeping changes in databases like Electronic Health Records (EHRs), billing systems, reporting packages, and other analytical frameworks that drive the IT infrastructure in a healthcare establishment. The industry has to make the deadline, and thus is in dire need of IT pros.
The manufacturing sector is steadily picking up and according to CNN Money, there is a fantastic demand for professionals with specialized skills.
The IT infrastructure in a typical manufacturing unit spans multiple levels of complexity. These range from systems that directly control the equipment and the mechanical processes within the production cycle, to frameworks that control various production operations, such as scheduling, dispatching of orders, data collection and analysis, reporting and analyzing, and tracking inventories. The IT infrastructure in a manufacturing unit has to also execute and streamline enterprise-level applications, such as asset management, supply chain management, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), and customer relations management.
In an increasingly interconnected world where production processes and business operations have to run round-the-clock and there is a heavy price to be paid for downtime, it is evident that the IT infrastructure forms the backbone of any manufacturing unit. At a time when the manufacturing industry is racing to reclaim its status, it is natural that IT pros would be recruited in large numbers and offered the driver’s seat.
It was back in 2001 when the Massachusetts Institute of Technology showed the shape of things to come in the domain of learning. The school launched the OpenCourseware Movement wherein it recorded classroom sessions and made them available as free online courses. Fast forward to 2013 and Apple’s iTunes U supports more than 500,000 courses in 1,000 universities from all over the world and sites like Coursera and Udacity are growing. The future IT-ization of education is clear, and it seems that the world is becoming perfectly content to learn in a teacherless environment.
There may come a time soon when all learning resources will be available on the Internet, teachers will become coaches or mentors with digital avatars, and the classrooms will no longer be confined to buildings. The education industry is gearing up for this revolution and right now, there is a pressing need for programmers, systems designers and architects, and network administrators who can design and devise the learning modules, implement these on the virtual domain, and spread them all over the world.
IT marketing is an extremely specialized field where the marketer needs to have a sound knowledge and understanding of the trends shaping the IT world, while having a hand on the pulse of the market in order to promote a company’s products and/or services. After all, the end user of an IT product is usually quite knowledgeable and knows what he/she wants. Users won’t just fall for glitzy packaging or gimmicky ads but would rather probe into the circuitry of the gadget or the features of the software. In such a case, a marketer who can explain the internal workings of, for instance, a tablet to a potential customer will surely score more brownie points than a counterpart who only knows the 4Ps.
A marketer who has written code, tinkered with servers, dealt with data security, or has worked hands-on in any IT domain can bring skills to the field of marketing research as well. After all, knowing how a particular IT device works definitely helps in gauging the target audience’s response to the product.
So, if you are an IT pro, this is just the right time to market yourself (the pun is unintended) in a way different from your peers.
With increased digitization of virtually every industry, including music, IT pros now can sing and dance to different tunes. IT pros are much in demand within the music industry to create simple beat maker applications and complex music production software programs used in recording studios. You do not need to know your B majors and C minors or even learn to play an instrument to break into the music industry. Your passion for music and your skills and training as a programmer will suffice.
The above-mentioned five industries are steadily growing, and there is a real demand for IT pros. What’s more, these industries have not yet been overrun by competition from your peers. Your chances of making a mark here are higher than in the traditional IT sector, where supply far overshoots demand. Make hay while the sun shines!