Transitioning Your Career Toward the New E-conomy: Part II

Generally speaking, the IT industry is young compared to other disciplines such as medicine and law. Employers are often more concerned with work experience, enthusiasm, achievement, extra-curricular activities, and of course reliability rather than degree content. Aline Cumming, a consultant in IT and Education suggests that career changers need not worry about having a first degree in IT or Computer Science, citing that many employers provide training for new recruitments in the specific technologies used within the work place and provide additional personnel tooling as
new technologies come on board. But there are also many ways in which you can ease your entry into the IT field while increasing your prospects to be successful at a career change.

If you are seriously considering a new career path, try to broaden your experience and familiarity with what is happening in the industry today by taking advantage of additional training or even part time training. There are many opportunities to take courses in specific IT technologies at the community college or university level. It is often not required to go through the entire prescription of courses to attain an additional or associate degree. Of course a joint degree is not frowned upon but rather open college credits are encouraged and show interest, determination and the
ability to learn new skills to prospective employers. If you can, take time out to study full time and grasp as much of what is going on on the market place as possible. Other non-traditional training is also available and is usually set with the career changer in mind. These offer diplomas or certificates in various subject matters and are often more voluntary and less academic in nature. Many are vendor specific and are tailor for the short term in order to get the individual up to speed as quickly as possible. Information Week cites that companies such as Microsoft, Oracle, Novell and others are committed to filling the skills gap by providing qualified
individuals to fill positions in their specific technologies. For example this year alone, Microsoft is expected to train approximately 1.2 million IT professionals while Oracle plans to train an additional 520,000 in specific technologies through instructor led training programs. In traditional institutional education venues enrollment for all level of degrees in technological fields are up anywhere from 71% to 108%.

An often-overlooked route for career transition preparation lies in apprenticeships, temping or in seeking one's transfer into a technology department within the workplace. This approach provides an opportunity to test the waters so to speak, to see if your career aspirations are really a match for your talents and personality. In taking the less committed approach an individual may also examine if a career in IT is also in synch with personal preferences relating the work place environment,
professional and leisure time relationships, and commitments. Often careers in IT require the ability to rise to the occasion in terms of longer work days and overtime in order to achieve certain project deadlines. Making …