Getting into tech is one thing, but what you really want is an industry where you have room for growth and progress; you want to be part of a sector that has lots of room for development. Luckily for you, the tech sector provides just that. It’s an area where innovation and progress are daily happenings and you can expect to experience developments throughout your entire career.
You know these development opportunities are there, but how do you access them? What’s the best way to take advantage of all that tech has to offer? In this article, we’ll review some of tech’s best professional development opportunities and give you some tips and tricks to making the most of the wonderful world of tech.
Growth in Tech
You’ve definitely heard us mention how strong the tech sector is; you’ve also heard us boast about the many opportunities the sector has to offer. And that’s because the tech industry is one of the fastest growing areas with incredible predictions for the future. Why? How? Well:
Technology-related roles are no longer limited to purely IT companies; every single sector is taking advantage of what technology has to offer and hiring tech professionals to help them further their business goals. No matter your area of interest or preferred industry, tech professionals are in high demand.
The heavy pressure placed on the digital sector during the COVID-19 pandemic led to more and more companies opting for remote workers or hybrid policies; technology is one of the most flexible industries and allows employees to access more job opportunities without in-person requirements.
Tech is always changing and evolving, meaning there will always be a new set of skills or tools to master and add to your resume. For those that enjoy a challenge, the tech sector poses the unique opportunity to continue your learning journey throughout your entire career.
As tech becomes more accessible to everyone through fun tools like ChatGPT, the doors to tech also open up and eliminate previous barriers to entry, contributing to a more inclusive and diverse workforce.
Sounds pretty great, right? There’s a reason tech has grown significantly in recent years and it’s because more and more people are realizing the life-changing effects that the tech sector could have on their lives. And the best part is the advantages aren’t just limited to when you immediately enter the industry; the tech sector is full of professional growth opportunities.
How can you take advantage of them? What can you expect as a tech newbie? Let’s dive right in.
Professional Development Opportunities in Tech
As we mentioned earlier and as we’re sure you’re aware, tech moves incredibly fast. New tools and innovations are constantly evolving and being released and skilled professionals are needed in practically every industry. What does this mean for you? Well, getting that first job in tech is just the first step; entering the tech sector means you’ll need to stay on top of the latest technologies, ensuring you’re ready to tackle the next challenge.
It might seem daunting, but don’t worry: the tech sector is full of incredible opportunities that can help you open new doors. Let’s start by discussing some of the different ways you can learn about new technologies; we’ll begin with courses.
Professional development in tech: courses
Courses can take a lot of different forms and the right one for you will depend on how much time you have, how different or new the skill you want to master is, and your current role:
Formal courses: lots of universities or tech schools offer formal courses or bootcamps where you have an instructor, coursework, and a guided curriculum. These are typically reserved for learning an entirely new skill and where you’ll need some expert guidance or support; if you want to learn about a new part of tech or master something completely new, like another programming language, formal courses are definitely worth it.
Online courses: sometimes you just need to finetune your skills regarding a certain tool and an online course can easily meet your goals. With online courses, you can learn at your own pace and focus on exactly what you want to learn. These free options are a great choice if you just need your skills refreshed or basic instruction.
At-work courses: because tech moves so fast, it’s impossible for companies to hire new employees to fill every new need that arises. And even if it were possible, the costly and time-consuming recruitment process eats up a lot of time and resources. Because of this, many employers choose to upskill or reskill their current employees, taking advantage of their previous skills and ability to work well on the team.
These are all fantastic ways to meet new needs in the field, especially if you want to learn a new skill, but what if you want to continue in your current role and move up the tech ladder? Luckily for you, the tech sector offers a wide range of opportunities for this as well.
Professional development in tech: networking
The power of making connections cannot be overstated: meeting other tech professionals and creating genuine connections can help kickstart your career and introduce you to never before seen opportunities:
Conferences: tech conferences are an amazing place to meet fellow techies, find out about new opportunities, and make lasting connections. And while it might be tempting to connect with absolutely everyone in attendance, quality is more important than quantity when it comes to networking and making sure you are valuing your connections’ time and resources.
LinkedIn: LinkedIn is a great place for networking, allowing you to check out where someone works and what they’ve been up to. Just make sure you aren’t randomly messaging people for your own benefit and take the time to create real connections.
Professional development in tech: on your own
The aforementioned ways to grow professionally in tech are fantastic, but here’s a little secret: it’s totally feasible to grow on your own as well! You can study on your own with books or online videos and seek out opportunities and new technologies on your own time. This, however, will require a large amount of dedication, motivation, and effort–but it’s totally possible and is a great way to get started on new skills.
No matter the way you choose to develop professionally in tech, we’re sure you’ll find what works for you and reach new heights. After all, there’s no better place to be than in tech and in such a fast growing and evolving industry, there’s truly no limit.
At Ironhack, we’re helping shrink the skills gap by teaching our students exactly what they need to know to enter the tech workforce and advance throughout their careers with our expertly-led bootcamps in web development, UX/UI design, data analytics, and cybersecurity. Check them out today and start planning your leap into tech and beyond.