Stay relevant. Be competitive. Keep your skill set up-to-date
In today’s competitive IT industry, IT pros must keep learning and constantly update their skills in order to survive. As the technology is constantly moving and changing, you need to stay on top of trends, and to make sure you are not just keeping your skills up-to-date, but also being able to see which skills will keep you competitive and will offer you stability few years from now.
Why it is so important to have the right skill set?
- Stability – the IT industry as of today, is extremely dynamic. As the technology keeps on evolving, if you don’t keep updating your skill set, you can become irrelevant faster than you might think. The IT industry becomes more and more competitive, with more quality candidates on each good position. By constantly enhancing your skills, you can stay competitive and relevant and gain job security.
- Getting your desired job – today more than ever, employers are looking for the right skills in your CV. Statistics show that recruiters spend only 6.25 second on average looking at a candidate’s resume. If you don’t have the required skills they are looking for, you are out of the game.
- Get higher salary – identifying the trends and being among the first people to acquire the most recent upraising technologies may get you a higher paying job as the demand for qualified people will be much higher than the availability.
- Become an expert – keeping up-to-date with your industry is key for building expert power. By developing expertise in your job and your industry, you’ll earn the trust and respect of the people around you.
Which skills are relevant?
As the benefits of keeping your skill set up-to-date are clear, knowing which skills are most important is not trivial. Technology is moving so fast nowadays that the potential skill toolbox is huge. It is extremely important to be able to identify which skills are required in for your desired job, and even more, to be able to know their importance.
How can you tell which skills are most relevant for you?
- Ask an expert – use your network to find the people you know that can give you the right advice for developing your career in the right direction. The technology experts can provide insights on the latest upraising technologies and most required skills.
- Forums – Membership sites and discussion forums can be full of insider-information tailored around specific topics or industries; and talking with other professionals in your industry can help you network and grow your skills, especially if you’re in a technology field such as IT.
- Meetups – meetups are a great way to meet relevant people from your industry face-to-face, to grow your network, and to be able to learn about the recent trends. You can find great meetups from your industry near you here.
- ReSkill – ReSkill’s analytics engine is gathering and analyzing vast amounts of data from the employment and education markets in order to provide users the best insights and the latest trends. It identifies the most required skills for each position and can provide personalized guidance as to which skills are most important for you to learn.
Learning alongside your work
Maintaining a career in the IT industry means that you usually have to work long hours every day. That doesn’t leave much time for studies and for gaining new skills. Saying, ‘I’m too busy to study right now’, is probably the easiest solution. There is no really optimal time for a professional to learn new skills. However, there are practical solutions that will allow you to learn alongside your work:
- Online courses and tutorials – there are numerous online courses, both free of charge and paid, many of them high quality. The main advantage is that you can learn in your free time, during the evenings or even on your way to work.
- YouTube – there are many free of charge tutorials that can give you basic (and sometimes even more than that) knowledge of the skill you want to acquire.
- Coursera, EdX, and Udacityoffer free classes from top-notch universities.
- Udemy – a repository of online course, with a large variety of courses for today’s most required skills.
- com is another repository for online tutorials, which you can use to brash up your skills.
- Bootcamps – programming bootcampsare full-time coding schools designed to train students without programming skills for a job as a Junior Programmer in 6-16 week periods by providing a highly focused learning programs in an immersive programming environment. You can search and compare bootcamps here.
- Professional books – another great way to acquire a new skill is by professional books. You can find great books for almost any skill at Amazon.
- Night courses – if you prefer frontal courses, there are many schools that give night courses for working people.
As there are many skills to acquire, and many learning resources out there, you can use ReSkill to get a training program tailored especially to your needs with hand-picked learning resources.
The learning process should never stop. It should be an integral part of your career and there is no right time to start enhancing your skills. The best time to start is now.