How a technology degree can give you a head start in business

How a technology degree can give you a head start in business

 

The words “technology” and “business” may not appear at first glance to go hand in hand, and it’s certainly true to say that some businesses are pretty outdated when it comes to computer use! However, there’s actually a substantial crossover between the skills learnt on a technology degree and the skills required to be successful in business. Computer science, for example, relies on strong mathematical ability – which is invaluable in the figures-focused business contexts of the modern age.

And that’s before even looking at technology as a business. This industry has been worth around 5{6689a152b9279bcdd26c91e939e58c0ecc437ab2764b593dc0336303a222505a} of US GDP in recent years – and this means that there are plenty of business opportunities available for those who want to use their direct tech skills rather than just their transferable ones. From software design to search engine optimization, there’s a whole world of tech careers available. Here, then, is just a selection of the options on offer.

Transferable skills 

Before plunging headfirst into the technology sector, it’s worth considering whether or not your skills could actually be applied to other niches. Take a networking degree: studying for this sort of qualification with an IT coursework component can give you the skills needed to take apart a network and repackage it in an optimized way, but it can also help you to think logically and solve problems. This is a handy skill for all kinds of roles across many different sectors, including business development and administration.

Software development 

It’s certainly true to say, though, that much of the focus for tech graduates tends to be on how they can directly apply their new skills in tech-related businesses. One route that some tech graduates go down in order to do this is software development. For many computer science graduates, this means heading to a start-up in Silicon Valley or elsewhere. The entire business model of the firms here is technological in nature, and software (or some kind of software-powered experience, such as a social media network) is usually their main product. If you opt for this route, then you could find yourself writing or editing the actual code – or perhaps working with the product development team to locate opportunities for the product to change and evolve.

However, if the start-up world doesn’t appeal for whatever reason, then there’s still scope to use your coding or computer science knowledge in the wider business world. Take insurance: companies in this sector rely on software to do everything from automated underwriting to client information management, and if you can come along and use your skills to make these systems smarter and cheaper, then you’re going to be in demand.

Digital marketing 

Some may believe that technology is restricted to fiddling around with pieces of hardware or coding software in a darkened room all night long. While this does happen, the technology sector isn’t just about coding languages and powerful equations. It’s also about applying digital principles to the pre-tech landscape, and as a result, professionals in fields such as digital marketing can benefit from studying it at degree level. While this isn’t the sort of career most associated with tech, it’s definitely one that goes hand in hand with a technological education.

Take, for example, search engine optimization – or SEO. This industry requires knowledge of how Google’s back-end software operates, but many who want to enter digital marketing are scared off because of words such as “algorithm”. Successful digital marketing professionals, however, know that they need to develop an understanding of this sort of phenomenon – otherwise they can’t harness it for their clients’ needs. If you already have that understanding of technology in place thanks to a computer science degree or similar, then you can be streets ahead in a field such as digital marketing without even trying.

If you’ve just graduated with a degree in a technology-related subject, then you’ve got a lot to look forward to. After all, the salaries in this career are usually quite lucrative – and you’ll certainly have plenty of cutting-edge and newsy conversation material whenever someone asks you what you do! However, your most pressing decision is likely to be which career path to take. You could, for example, leave technology altogether and use your quantitative skills in finance or a similar industry. Or you could go into the tech sector, and work in software development or a related field. In truth, your options are completely open – so you’ll be able to find a business niche that suits you.

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