Changing to a career in tech in an economic crisis

Changing to a career in tech in an economic crisis
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Global financial experts are ringing warning bells about an impending recession, and hordes of employees are quitting their positions in what has been deemed as the Great Resignation. It’s not just a different employer that people are looking for either. According to a study by McKinsey, 48% of those who submitted their resignations in the last two years are reshuffling, or making the switch to a different industry altogether.

If you’re among those, breaking into tech is not only an attractive option but also within reach even without a tech background. Let’s find out why you should consider a career in tech in the face of an economic crisis.

Why you should consider a career in tech

Whether it’s because of a general sense of discontent with the job or the need to secure higher compensation, employees across the world are leaving their jobs in droves. Some have their eyes on workplace flexibility and low-stress environments, while others are prioritizing better salaries. The ongoing trend is not simply about leaving a job but a desire for a complete overhaul of their careers in pursuit of happiness.

With the global economy in a downspin after prolonged Covid disruptions, conventional logic would suggest now is not the right time to court the risks inherent in changing jobs or careers. That may well be true in normal circumstances. But an industry that goes against this understanding is tech. It has remained one of the most stable throughout the pandemic and continues to see massive demand even as the world economy stares at a looming recession.

Technology research and consultancy firm Gartner expects global IT spending to increase to $4.6 trillion by 2023, an increase of 5.1% over 2022. This marks a resounding vote of confidence in favor of the tech industry at large. The stability of this industry stems not only from ever-increasing demand but also from the fact that it is constantly shifting and reinventing itself in seemingly small but significant ways. Its ability to adapt to a constantly-changing world enables the tech industry to maintain a strong footing even during unfavorable circumstances.

In addition to its steadfastness in the face of economic adversity, the industry has the advantage of having a diversity of businesses of all sizes and types under its domain. Technology has rapidly evolved from being a way of survival to finding applications in all kinds of fields - from healthcare and administration to finance and entertainment. This means that pursuing a career in tech has a significantly broader scope and opportunity. For example, if you have previous experience working in healthcare services, the transition to working in a healthtech startup is likely made easier.

The high demand for tech workers is not currently being met with an adequate supply of specialists. So not only do the jobs pay well, but employers are also often willing to invest in education and training to upskill employees.

For most people looking to switch careers, the tech industry is a great option. Although a blanket approach is hardly useful, the industry’s size and demand for diverse talent make it accessible to many.

Demystifying the tech industry

All career shifts are challenging, and switching to tech is certainly no exception. You’re not alone if the industry feels opaque and impenetrable. Transitioning to tech can seem especially daunting if you don’t have the right background. However, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible, as long as you have a clear vision of the road ahead and are ready to tough it out. With that in mind, let’s take apart a couple of myths that most aspirants tend to believe about the industry in general.

You need to have technical skills

A job in tech means you need to know a few programming languages fluently and be able to whip up lines of code on demand, right? Wrong! Tech companies employ more than just engineers or developers to build their products and services. There are entire teams handling the operations and business needs of these companies. These roles usually require applicants to possess little or no technical know-how, as they can acquire the basic levels of familiarity necessary for their roles on-the-job.

Even core technical roles are not all the same, with each contributing differently to a company’s requirements. Based on your interests and the tools you work with, you might be more inclined to pursue the role of a data scientist over that of a data engineer, for instance.

The tech industry is large enough in that it provides you with ample choices. This allows you to find a position that you’re most interested in.

Your previous experience makes no difference

Depending on your professional background and the role you are applying to, we strongly recommend leveraging your existing skills to get your foot in the door. Whether this is domain-specific expertise or general soft skills, make it a point to highlight them in your application if they are relevant to the position. Employers often prioritize soft skills such as critical thinking and effective communication, even for specialized technical roles. So conduct thorough research into both the company and position you are applying for and match your existing skill set to what they are expecting. You will find that you already bring a lot more to the table than you might have initially thought.

How to switch to the tech sector

A successful shift to a career in tech is not going to be a cakewalk because of two obvious reasons:

  1. Availability: Like every other sector, tech also sees periodic rounds of layoffs and retrenchment in response to economic factors.
  2. Competition: People laid off from tech jobs will compete for the same roles you might be planning to apply for.

That’s why you’ll need a smart approach to acquire the skills and credentials necessary to get your foot in the door. Short-term courses and diplomas will not be much help because they lack both the breadth and depth of knowledge that tech jobs require. Instead, structured and practice-based longer programs that are designed to impart holistic knowledge and skills can prove the game changer.

Let Turing College help you

Turing College is an online tech career school set up with applicants like you in mind. Based on skills-first learning methods, our offerings range from data analytics to web3 developer course. You can learn at your own pace and are supported by a strong community of both peers and mentors.

With a focus on discussion and project-based learning, we prepare our students for successful careers in their chosen fields after they graduate. Our mentors also provide one-on-one guidance on-demand, which has proved beneficial for the career advancement of our students. We also support students in their job search through feedback from our hiring experts and via mock interviews and group coaching sessions.

We are committed to providing high-quality tech education and helping our students pursue their career goals. To date, 100% of our students have either received a raise or been placed in the tech industry after completing courses at Turing College. Take the first step towards a career in tech. Find out more today!