IT Jobs: A Comparison Based on Industry Affiliation
Over the past decade or so, technology has not just infiltrated every aspect of our daily lives, but it has also completely transformed the way companies operate their businesses. Trends such as online banking and online shopping have forced companies to streamline their operations – and transition from hardware infrastructure to the “cloud” – as they meet the increasing demand for secure data transfers and storage. At the same time, coding or software development has seen a similar impact on industry. From system software used to operate businesses to the mobile apps we use every day, software development has become an integral part of every business.
This “digital transformation” of our economy has created millions of jobs requiring IT or coding skills. These are IT jobs such as Software Application Developer, Computer Support Specialist, System Analyst, Software Systems Developer, Network Systems Administrator, Data Scientist and Cloud Architect to name a few. If you are an IT Professional or Developer – or if you have an interest in becoming one – there has never better time for job prospects in the IT industry than today.
But here’s something you might not know. These opportunities abound in both the IT industry and in non-IT Industries. In fact, there are more jobs – almost 60% according to industry organization CompTIA – requiring IT or programming skills outside the IT industry than there are inside the IT industry. This provides more options than ever for IT professionals as it opens up industries such as banking, transportation, healthcare, retail, entertainment media and many more.
IT Jobs Within the IT Industry
IT is its own thriving industry. While the IT industry includes tech manufacturers, telecommunications/internet services, and research and testing, the areas that are adding the most tech-related jobs are Software Development and IT Services. These last two are the “makers, creators, integrators or supporters of technology products and/or services” according to CompTIA. Software Developer companies create software that other companies use to run their businesses or software apps that both businesses and consumers utilize. And, they come in all sizes. For example, Cerner, one of the largest companies in Kansas City, develops software that hospitals all over the world use to manage their electronic patient data and operating systems. On the other hand, Shot Tracker is a local startup that has created an app to help basketball players improve their shooting accuracy.
IT Service companies generally specialize in some area of technology that helps non-IT industry companies design, implement and manage their technology needs. This runs the gamut from network systems to cloud operations to data management to security as well as developing proprietary software solutions for specific businesses. In Kansas City, Valorem Consulting is an example of an IT Services company that partners with Microsoft to provide cloud and infrastructure solutions to businesses of all sizes. Blue Ocean Consulting is a Software Development company that builds complex websites and proprietary customized software solutions for companies.
Working directly in the IT industry has many pluses. IT industry companies are generally on the leading edge of IT trends, technologies and products which can be very exciting and provide great industry experience. These professionals generally work with – and become experts in – specific technologies that they apply in different ways to different industries. IT companies – especially the Software Development companies – often have a more relaxed and flexible culture that is often associated with the Googles of the world.
If you choose to work in the IT industry, you’ll learn how IT functions on a broad scale, and how this translates into different industries. You’ll become familiar with various types of hardware and software setups used in the field. If you have a general interest in IT, this may be the career path to choose. However, it is not the only option available.
IT Jobs Outside of the IT Industry
As technology increasingly impacts all companies, those outside of the IT industry also need technology services. That’s why almost all companies have some type of technology employee on their staff and all larger companies have diverse technology teams. They understand that technology is a critical component in today’s world. In fact, Alaska Airlines CIO Veresh Sita went so far as to say, “We are no longer an airline. We’re a software company with wings.”
While many tech employees inside the IT industry become experts in specific technologies as applied over many industries, the non-IT industry tech professionals learn to adopt many different technologies to the specific business of their company or industry. In other words, they work with technology while focusing their efforts on the needs of a single organization or industry.
These types of jobs also provide great opportunities for advancement for an individual in any industry developing an interest in IT. It presents the opportunity for them to utilize their industry knowledge to apply technology to their company’s initiatives.
Which Type of Job is Right for You?
Should you focus your efforts on jobs within the industry or should you lend your skills to companies that don’t focus solely on information technology? Truthfully, no one option is superior to another. The answer depends on which direction is right for you. It is really no different than the factors one must weigh in deciding on a career in general. This choice comes down to your preferences. But the most important fact is that there is great opportunity in the field of technology – no matter the industry you choose. To find out more about IT, contact us online or call 913-322-7044 today!