The technology sector is becoming more appealing every day. As technology progresses, the potential growth of the sector will continue growing exponentially. There are a plethora of jobs available, with more accessibility than ever before, and with great salaries to boot – so what’s stopping you from following your dream into tech?
Technology is seen as the forefront and future of the economy. In the UK alone, £28bn has been invested into technology since 2011.
This investment into technology has meant it has become a major contributor to the UK economy. The digital economy, which is growing at twice the rate of the wider economy, now contributes around £97bn a year. This success suggests more money will undoubtedly continue to be invested, only increasing the appeal of working in this industry.
A report by Tech Nation highlights further statistics demonstrating the growth of the digital economy. The turnover of the UK digital tech industries was estimated at £170 billion in 2015, a growth rate of 22% (or £30 billion) in five years. Over the same period, the total number of UK digital tech businesses grew by 28%, more than twice as fast as non-digital businesses.
This rise in the number of businesses has been a clear contributor to the rise in the number of jobs available. The number of digital tech jobs across the UK has grown at more than twice the rate of non-digital tech sectors in 2015 and more than half a million new digital jobs are expected to be created in the UK by 2022. Not only are these jobs highly skilled, they are also highly paid, and the starting salary is sky high for top candidates in tech roles.
However, this increase of technology focused businesses has led to a fear that there will be more jobs than those qualified to fill them, thus helping people break into tech is more important than ever to create additional tech talent.
Luckily, this awareness of a need for new tech talent has increased the accessibility of gaining skills needed for a career in technology.
A relevant degree from a great university is usually the key to clinching a job within technology, and the popularity of these degrees has risen in recent years. However, University degrees have already seen an increase of tuition from £3000 to £9000 a year in 2012, and with the looming potential of increased student loan interest rates, it’s no wonder people are searching for other avenues to pursue their interests.
There are many examples of self-taught mobile app developers, website designers and IT specialists who have moved into tech, such as David Karp, founder of Blogging site Tumblr, and Jack Ma, founder of alibaba.com. According to the recruitment site hired.com, a quarter of technology workers are self-taught. There are also a variety of free resources and coding courses dedicated to helping people break into code, including First Code Girls, Break into Tech, and of course, us here at She Can Code.
More focus also has been placed on apprenticeships, to ensure jobs are filled, as well as an understanding that University is becoming less accessible to some. Major companies such as O2 have an annual scheme dedicated for apprentices, which continues to expand year-on-year, giving students the required digital skills they'd need for a variety of tech-focused roles. O2, along with BT, Ericsson and Vodafone are to expand a mentoring scheme launched last year to encourage girls into Stem careers. Many companies, such as BT, also offer a Degree Apprenticeship, where you work and earn a wage, whilst studying a degree at the same time. Your fees are paid, meaning that you come out at the end of the apprenticeship with no debt.
With this abundance of apprenticeships and self-study courses available, tech careers are open to anybody who can think logically and creatively and enjoys messing around with computer code. This, alongside with the increased growth trajectory of the sector and number/variety of jobs available, shows that now is most the time to get into tech, and the easier accessibility opens this career option up to more people than ever before. If you have a passion and interest in technology, know that there is so much opportunity out there and don’t give up on your dream. Now is the time to pursue and prosper.
Charlotte Anderson is a marketing enthusiast with a First Class Degree in Business from the University of Sussex. Currently she is working as a digital marketer for an engineering company involved heavily with social media marketing and content creation, and hoping to gain further knowledge in coding and website development. Having written many essays around the subject of gender equality and representation in the media, she hopes to convey the passion for the subject through her blog posts with SheCanCode.