Want to Get Ahead in Your Career in 2013? It’s Easy—Change!
Long ago, the best way to get ahead in your career was to have a career—and stay there. Longstanding employees were awarded seniority and tenure, and simply managing to stick around the longest usually allowed you to climb the ladder to higher and higher positions. But that’s no longer the case. Hopefully, for your own sake, you know that it hasn’t been the case for some time now.
InfoWorld ’s Julia King recently pointed out that staying "viable” in fields like IT or software development that have been rapidly changing since their inceptions requires making constant adjustments, alongside those adjustments that are being made to the environment around you.
…it's all about exiting your comfort zone and actively seeking out new and different opportunities, rather than relying on traditional organizational charts, human resources or even your own immediate manager. Your very best career strategy, experts say, is to take over the navigation controls yourself.
King later points out that the “comfort zone” that she mentioned earlier often extends outside exclusively tech-related skills, especially in today’s job market where many candidates are beefing up their résumés with a variety of experiences.
Tech staffers are migrating into new roles—frequently with non-IT job titles—throughout the enterprise, working on an array of projects that require tech savvy in addition to business and process knowledge, management skills, and more.
Evidence of King’s claims for the need for a broad spectrum of skills can be seen in Forbes projected list of the top jobs in 2013, where four of the top ten are computer related:
No. 1 Software Developers (Applications and Systems Software)
70,872 jobs added since 2010, 7% growth
No. 4 Computer Systems Analysts
26,937 jobs added since 2010, 5% growth
No. 6 Network and Computer Systems Administrators
18,626 jobs added since 2010, 5% growth
No. 8 Information Security Analysts, Web Developers, and Computer Network Architects
15,715 jobs added since 2010, 5% growth
No. 11 Computer Programmers
11,540 jobs added since 2010, 3% growth
No. 15 Database Administrators
7,468 jobs added since 2010, 7% growth
In addition to expanding your portfolio to include as many tech and management skills as possible, widening your range of potential employment fields is just as important. No longer is Silicon Valley the only place for tech jobs; many companies worldwide now rely on everything from mobile apps to enterprise-wide software solutions.
One field that’s expected to continue to make enormous investments in software development is biotech. Biotech, mHealth, and surgical software were all buzzwords throughout 2012, and all three are expected to grow not just in 2013 but for years to come.
Got any tips for securing a software/IT related job in 2013? Share them with others in the comments section below!