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Career Hacker: Advancing your IT career

May 06, 2014

Are you considering a career change but wondering if it’s a realistic idea? Whether you're looking to score a big promotion, change your IT career path or start out in IT, these suggestions can help you make the leap.

  • Don’t be shy about applying. Many great candidates hold themselves back simply because they don’t meet all the “requirements” in the job description. The truth of the matter is that laundry list of skills and experience is usually more of a suggestion than an actual requirement. Hiring managers will generally overlook a mismatch for candidates who bring a lot to the table—whether or not they meet every listed criterion. So if you have good reason to think you’re qualified for the job, go ahead and apply.
  • Let your network know you’re looking for a change. Touch base with your friends and peers (outside of your workplace) to let them know what kind of opportunities you’re looking for.Everyone likes to help, and you'd be surprised what opportunities your network will uncover.
  • Make sure your resume tells a story. Although your past work experience may not exactly apply to the career you seek, make sure you highlight the elements that indicate a natural interest and progression to your desired career. For the IT newbie, be sure to include points like having served on your office SharePoint committee or being the unofficial go-to guy for your department’s tech needs. Seeking an IT manager spot? Showcase speeches, mentoring, project management or other leader-like things you've accomplished.
  • Include an objective on your resume. While the objective section is generally considered unnecessary in modern resumes, it’s a good idea to include it if you’re trying to make a change. But don’t make the objective all about you, though; it must have something for the employer. An effective objective might begin like this:  "Looking to use my project management skills to obtain a position in …”. 
  • Not sure where you want to go or how to get there? offers an excellent e-book with detailed information about career paths and the certifications and training required to start.

Looking to improve or start your IT career? Need help on constructing the perfect resume, acing your interview and negotiating salary? Well, TEKsystems talks to over 100,000 people hiring IT workers every week and we know what works. We'll be sharing our information with you during our weekly career advice posts. Tune in next Tuesday, May 13, when we give you tips for starting a new IT career

If you want to learn more right now, check out our recent posts about working with an IT recruiter, answering the "What's your biggest weakness?" question or using social media in your job search.

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