The pandemic was a daunting time for jobseekers as businesses were on a slowdown, and opportunities took a backseat. Pay cuts and job losses were more common than ever, making the situation challenging even for highly skilled professionals. However, the vaccines brought a turnaround with businesses getting on the road to recovery. Thankfully, opportunities are thriving again, even amid the ongoing pandemic. If you are an IT professional, you can expect good times ahead.
IT services are in high demand, so most companies in the domain have open positions right now. It means that the new normal may just be the right time to take your career to the next level. But everything boils down to picking the right opportunities at the right time. It is easier said than done because one misstep can push you down the growth ladder. Here is the best career advice to advance your IT career in the new normal.
Rethink Your Career Goals
The new normal brings fresh challenges and opportunities for IT professionals. You can expect more competition to start with, and the apprehension of uncertainty abounds during the ongoing pandemic. There is much more on the opportunity front, with digital transformation being the need of the hour for businesses. Expect your skills to be in high demand, but you will also have to acquire new ones to stay relevant. Both ways, you will have to rethink your career goals for the foreseeable future. Crunch the numbers to decide where you want to be in terms of salary expectations and growth timelines.
Realign Your Remote Skillset
Realigning your remote skillset is crucial if you are serious about advancing your career in the new normal. Think beyond being adept at using virtual apps and collaboration tools. You must embrace the right mindset to be hybrid-ready. Every organization will have to work on the hybrid model for the foreseeable future as the virus is here to stay. Unless you have the right skills to adapt to this model, you cannot get the best job offers. Showcasing good communication abilities, dedication, and passion is vital because these are the qualities employers want. Of course, your hard skills matter, but these soft skills make you a complete package.
Be Ready To Work On A Contract
As businesses operate in the new normal, they have a more flexible mindset. IT companies, in particular, are keen to explore diverse hiring models. Professionals ready to pick contractual roles are in a better place to get the best opportunities. You may not find the idea too great on the surface, but there’s much more if you scratch the surface. You have the freedom to pick more than one project and enhance your skills down the line. You never have to worry about feeling bored or facing burnout when working on different projects with different companies. Not to mention, you can make big money without being tied down to a 9-to-5 job.
Broaden Your Horizon
Even as the pandemic disrupted global travel, it has made the world a smaller place. IT professionals have a chance to broaden their horizons by picking opportunities anywhere as virtual employees. If you live in New Zealand, you can explore it recruitment Australia for a broader reach. The best part is that you need not even move to another country yet get to work with an overseas business and understand how global companies operate. You may even consider moving there later if you find the grass greener on the other side. Try your luck with overseas opportunities, and you may end up striking gold.
Network With The Right People
Networking is the key to a thriving career, whether you are in the IT sector or any other industry. But you have to embrace the concept of smart networking in the new normal. Pick the right kind of people to connect with. Ideally, these should be from your industry. Look for ones who inspire you to grow and learn in some way. Diverse perspectives are crucial to growth, so pay attention to things they share at events and social media communities. The idea is to grow your circle but focus on quality rather than only numbers as you extend your networks.
Build Relationship Capital
Experts recommend that IT professionals think beyond extending their networks and also work on building relationship capital. Essentially, it is about people you work with regularly. These could be your mentors, colleagues, and recruiters. Look for anyone who can suggest opportunities and help you capitalize on them. Even better, prioritize people who can recommend you and share referrals down the line. Growing your network gives you a good start, but only the strongest links can boost growth. Consolidate them, and you will definitely get the best options with less effort.
Be Kind To Yourself
The final piece of advice is to be kind to yourself. It is easy to have unrealistic expectations when you are in a thriving industry like IT, but you may press yourself too much with them. Practice patience as good opportunities may not come as fast as you imagine. Stick with what you have because it is the best way to sustain yourself financially through a crisis. You can wait for better to come, but do not lose your patience. Consider picking a side hustle that gives you more exposure and helps you ramp up with a new skill. Collaborating with IT recruiters is a good idea as they ensure your profile is visible at the right places. Most importantly, invest in self-care because you need it the most now.
The new normal may be the best or worst time for your IT career. It depends on the approach you take. Opportunities are coming in abundance, but you must be visible at the right places to get them before the others. Also, ensure that you have the relevant skills to be an in-demand resource. Focus on upskilling while you wait for the best opportunities to come. You will be in a better place to secure them!