Skip to content
HOME >> CAREER >> How to switch to a tech career without a tech background in 2022

How to switch to a tech career without a tech background in 2022

How to switch to a tech career without a tech background in 2022 – What’s that you say? You don’t have a computer science degree?? Professors and parents might shudder, but there’s no need to fear for your career if you didn’t choose computer science as your college major. In fact, the digital world is so vast and varied that your studies and your work experience from completely different fields can actually be what sets you apart in the hunt for a tech role.

Today, tech skills are in high demand because the world is exhaustively going digital. Every business is trying to digitize and rebrand its products and services to fit this trend. Facebook rebranded itself into Meta to directly bring netizens into virtual reality and the metaverse, while MTN Nigeria rebranded to extend their digital services. This article examines how you can get a tech job without a tech background.

It’s no wonder then that lots of people are taking stock of their current jobs and wondering if a pivot into tech might not be a really smart choice. Then there are all the other benefits of a move into the IT sector, such as higher salaries, great benefits (who doesn’t want free lunch and a barista at your fingertips?) as well as endless learning and development opportunities.

A tech skill is short for technical or technological skill. They are the abilities and knowledge needed to perform specific tasks that are mechanical, information technology-related, mathematical, or scientific in nature.

But if you’re coming from a more traditional background, is it possible to pivot? It definitely is – below we take a look at three strategies for success.

1. Network with the tech community

Networking with the tech community gets you jobs, work tools and more knowledge. No man is an island, remember? This phrase is even more imperative to this community because the truth simply remains that technology especially computer technology operates without institutional authority. You need to identify people who can give you the right information to make your transition to tech as seamless as possible.

Developments in this field pop up like updates and it is so because individuals learn and advance by themselves. Knowledge can easily become outdated and universities and colleges only teach the basics. It is just like music and art, new styles come out every day and if you exit the community just for a few months, you might need a refresher or play catchup.

2. Get a non-tech job at a tech company

One of the easiest entry routes into tech is to apply for a non-technical position within a tech company that is a match for your current skill set. 

From there, you can use available professional development benefits to learn new skills, you can participate in any mentoring programs or relevant employee groups, and you’ll be able to develop relationships within teams you’d like to be a part of. 

You may also be able to offer to take on projects that will help you to upskill. Making your manager aware that you are willing and able to learn will be a great start.

3. Take a tech course related to your interest

The “interests” section at the end of a resume is often a dumping ground. Make yours count and develop outside interests that are geared towards learning and development and therefore, getting yourself a new job. 

From coding boot camps to online courses where you can learn a programming language, or delve into data science or web development, you could also start a blog and tinker about with its HTML and CSS templates. Don’t be afraid to build things and break them – it’s all part of the process. There are plenty of tech skills you can learn in your spare time, and it all looks good to a prospective employer.

4. Taking online digital courses

There are numerous boot camps and online lessons both free and paid to make up for skills you do not possess. You can choose courses that appeal to you or are in high demand such as software engineering, UX/UI design, or data science. It is possible to complete programs in 10 to 15 weeks depending on your pace.

We suggest you learn tech programs online because it’s just better and easier when doing your practical. If you really want to strike straight into getting a six-digit paid tech job then you need to really learn something about it. Also, if you don’t have enough funds you can go with a free course plan which doesn’t come along with a certificate. Certificates are hardly requested for tech jobs, experience, referrals and work portfolio is what really matter.

5. Do an internship or volunteer in a tech role to get relevant experience

Internships and volunteering help you get relevant experience. It is one way to land tech jobs with no experience working in the tech industry. Don’t be discouraged as a newbie in the tech space, you may think you don’t have experience but you actually do. While learning you must have created some files or projects during practical sessions. This is enough to demonstrate your skills and exhibit your talent, albeit it will be a different ball game when you start working.

It can be a short-term or part-time internship and sometimes it might not be paid (if you are working for a relative or prestigious organization). Garnering these experiences gets you a foot into the door, it breeds referrals and testimonials that can land you your first tech job.

6. Create a portfolio

A portfolio is the best thing that can sell you for any job. Referrals can help but glancing through an array of beautiful accomplishments is the final straw that seals the deal.

Your tech portfolio should contain all projects you have been a part of whether personal or team-wise. For this, we recommend you create an online portfolio because nothing beats the arrangement of digital accomplishments on digital devices themselves. It should be online so clients and other well-meaning individuals can gaze upon your work of art.

Be mindful, that a portfolio is not your CV. A CV is a summary of your skills, biodata and work history while a portfolio shows the project or jobs you have done. If you are an app developer, the designs of the apps, who commissioned them and where they can be found on Google Playstore or Apple AppStore.

You can get a lot of nice templates online to create a perfect portfolio. It should contain links to your projects if they are online or vice versa.

7. Revamp your CV

Prune and refine your experiences and skills and make them fit for the new industry by focusing on transferable skills. If you choose to hone and rely on soft skills, that is okay too, but you can also choose to add new skills or courses, volunteer experiences etc.

Remove anything that might confuse tech recruiters and employers. Update your LinkedIn profiles and portfolios regularly as your progress.

8. Re-tool your job

In some cases, it may be necessary to go back to college to gain a professional certification, and juggling everything that an intensive course requires along with a full-time job is going to be tricky. 

Having a chat with your current employer could be a good idea: can you compress your working week so that you can complete five days in four? If you can afford it – and your employer agrees – it may be possible to go part-time while you’re studying. 

Ask if there’s any budget for professional development, bearing in mind that employers generally only pay for courses that will benefit them too, and you may be required to stay at the company for a set period afterwards.

The most important thing to keep in mind is that there are incredible opportunities out there. With a plan and some determination, you’ll make the perfect pivot. 

9. Apply for jobs

Now that you have implemented the tips you received from your network, and developed and relevant experiences, you need to start looking for jobs. Some of the best ways to get tech jobs are through LinkedIn, a referral from your network and talking to tech recruiters (in some cases, a tech recruiter will reach out to you if your profile fits the bill).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.