IT is becoming more and more vital by the year: everything from safety when making purchase online to ensuring office systems keep running, to coding ­and programming – our modern world needs the people who work in this industry. If you’re interested in this fast-moving, forward-thinking sector, and have logical and mathematical skills, then IT could be the place for you.

Jobs in IT: hardware

People who choose to take the hardware career path work with the physical parts of computer apparatus. They deal with motherboards, desktop units, servers and computer peripherals. There are a wide range of different jobs in this area, including technical support engineers, network engineers and infrastructure architects.

Jobs in IT: software

People who choose to take the software career path work with computer programmes, which make computers function effectively. They deal with operating systems, programmes, applications, websites, databases, computer games and so much more. There is a vast variety of different jobs in this area of IT including web designers, software developers and software testers.

Other jobs in IT 

Alternatively, some people who work in IT choose to work in a less hands-on technical role and become involved in IT consultancy careers. People in these positions simultaneously analyse and assess other companies’ IT systems and their business requirements. They then offer expert advice and planning services to help companies use IT solutions to improve their productivity and achieve their business goals.

IT specialists are needed in all kinds of companies. Some work for technological companies such as Microsoft, Apple, BT or Oracle; some work for IT consultancy firms like Capgemini and Logica; some work for smaller specialist IT solutions companies; and many people work for non-technological companies, such as public sector departments, investment banks and energy companies.

Cyber security and coding are among the most future-proof careers out there: companies will always need them, in fact demand is growing all the time.

IT apprenticeships

School leavers wanting to walk in IT could do Intermediate Apprenticeships after their GCSEs, in roles like support technician, setting up new equipment, or a helpdesk professional; even data administration, working to enter and edit data and writing up reports.

IT Advanced Apprenticeships are also available, for those with A-levels or who have completed Intermediate Apprenticeships. If you fancy being a software tester and trying out computer games, or a software developer creating apps, these could be the programmes for you. Another career path an Advanced Apprenticeship could open up is website management –designing websites and ensuring a smooth user experience.

Higher Apprenticeships are available too, offering routes into jobs that would usually be reserved for those who go to university. You could undertake a Higher Apprenticeship as an IT security analyst, or working in cyber-crime – even work at MI5 and MI6.

There are also IT Degree Apprenticeships, for school leavers who have achieved high grades at A-level. Your employer will pay your tuition fees and a salary, for the work you will do alongside your studies. 

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