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Information Technology (IT) needs no introduction. IT is rapidly changing the way we live, positively affecting every component of our daily lives.
As the fastest-growing field in the past year, the IT career, therefore, is a lucrative path that students are taking – especially with its large job salary outlook.
The information technology industry is the highest employer. It employs nearly 6 million individuals across industries such as technology, healthcare, finance, and education.
How is this so?
The truth is that there is no industry in this age that doesn’t apply IT to its operations.
Not only does the IT career salary serve as motivation but also the personal satisfaction of being an agent of change that IT professionals get.
Information technology or IT is the use of computers to store, retrieve, transmit, and utilize data or information. IT is a subset of Information and Communications Technology (ICT).
However, the IT system is still all-encompassing. It is an information system, a communications system as well as a computer system that is operated by a limited group of users.
The information age brings with it advances in computer and communication technology which we refer to as “the information revolution.” This revolution leads to greater demand for access, management, and transformation of information.
Even though people interchange computers and computer networks for Information technology, IT encompasses other information distribution technologies. Television, telephones, computer hardware, software, electronics, databases, websites, they all are part of IT.
As hinted earlier the IT job salary and the personal satisfaction of taking part in something that changes the world may lure you to an IT career. However, there are other reasons why you may consider an IT career path. Here are some of them:
An IT expert main job role is to monitor and manage computer hardware, software, and networks within an organization.
Do to the technical view of this career, the job attracts attracts potentially lucrative salaries and offers a range of possibilities for personal growth.
Here are the steps to take if you want to become an IT specialist.
The minimum academic requirement you need to become an IT expert is a bachelor’s degree. You can choose a degree in Information Technology, Computer Science, Computer Engineering or Information Management Technology.
All of these programs last four years and cover topics such as IT systems analysis, risk assessment, IT management, information security, and data networks.
If you want to become a respected IT specialists and seek to have an excellent academic qualifications, you may need to go beyond a bachelor’s degree.
You can enroll in a master’s degree or even advance to a doctorate. A master’s and doctoral program broadens your perspective in computer science and trains you on how you can apply your information technology knowledge in real-life situations.
Once you graduate, look for a job, even if it doesn’t pay you well. Take work as a stepping stone to bigger things, rather than a source of income.
You can start by working as a technical support analyst or as a project management assistant. This exhibition will help you understand how information technology infrastructures work and develop your problem-solving skills.
Also, you can decide to get a recognized business. It can be an IT consulting company, a government entity, or even the military.
Once you have acquired the appropriate academic qualifications and experience, you must apply for certification from a recognized professional body.
No one will take you seriously if you don’t have a professional certification.
Top certifications include Project Management Professional (PMP), Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA), Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), and Certified Information Security Manager (CISM).
These certifications will increase your chances of obtaining advanced, well-paying jobs.
The IT field is very diverse. If you don’t specialize, you won’t become an expert at anything.
You can specialize in a particular product, in an area of information technology such as mobile computing and data networks, or in a brand such as Microsoft, Cisco, or Apple.
The key is to identify something that is very popular and that interests you.
Once you’ve identified the area of expertise, reach out to people, and become the person they all turn to if they have a problem in that area.
You need a wide area network for your name to be known. Without it, no one will know that you are an IT expert.
In the end, you will not receive any job offers. Go there and tell people what you are doing. Or you can open a Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn account and interact with people.
So, we’re back to where we began. What exactly are those highest paying IT jobs? What can I become in an IT career that will earn me a huge salary?
Here is a list of IT jobs that guarantees you a high salary:
Now, let’s discuss each of these IT jobs in the order of their salary – from the highest paying to the least paid.
These are IT specialists who are responsible for the company’s technical direction.
The CIO sets forth the technology goals of the business. He also plans and oversees key IT projects like budgeting, personnel, and equipment procurement to achieve organizational goals.
Meanwhile, an effective CIO must have an agile strategic mind, show strong leadership ability as well as possess high acumen in both technology and business.
For this IT career path, you should have at least a bachelor’s degree. However, many companies prefer you to have a graduate diploma as well.
However, the average salary for this IT career job is $153,082
Also, the CIO employment growth projection is 12% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT professionals who plan and design computer networks.
While Network Administrators manage and support the network, and Network Engineers build and repair it, Network Architects plan and design data and communications networks.
Furthermore, these professionals need to understand the company’s business needs in order to design an efficient, secure and scalable network that aligns with strategic goals.
To become a Network Architect, you need to have at least a bachelor’s degree as well as five years and above hands-on networking role.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $120,940.
Also, the Network Architect growth projection is 6% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who protect and defend an organization’s Information Systems.
There are high cyber threats emanating from sophisticated cyber warfare which warrant organizations to be vigilant. They need to combat attackers and protect their information assets.
Therefore, IT security specialists utilize a rich understanding of cybersecurity threats, technologies, and countermeasures to guarantee secure computer systems.
For this IT career path, you need to have at least an associate or undergraduate degree in information security or a related field of study.
However, IT job experience and security-centric certifications will boost your chances of securing IT security specialist positions.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $117,537.
Also, the IT security specialist growth projection is 28% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who analyze business data for actionable intelligence.
Data scientists mine and analyze data from customer transactions, clickstreams, sensors, social media, as well as other data sources. Their work is to also unlock valuable and predictive insights that will influence business decisions and increase competitive edge.
To become a Data Scientist, you’ll definitely need an advanced degree, such as a Master’s, MBA, or Ph.D. Some companies accept undergraduate diplomas in analytical concentration like Computer Science, Math & Statistics, however.
However, the average salary for this IT career job is $117,345.
Also, the Data Scientist employment growth projection is 32% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who research and develop new technologies.
A Computer Scientist is a driving force of modern computing advancement. They merge deep technical insightfulness with creativity and scientific research skills to invent new information systems as well as improve existing ones.
Meanwhile, these professionals can work in a hardware and software design companies, the federal government defense sector, as well as IT research firms and academia.
For this IT career path, you should have a graduate degree – Master’s or Ph.D. – in computer science (CS) or a related field of study. However, the military or federal government takes a bachelor’s degree for entry-level computer science jobs.
Meanwhile, IT applicants will have to pass some rigorous security/background checks.
However, the average salary for this IT career job is $111,405
Also, the computer science market employment growth projection is 19% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT professionals who develop computer systems and applications.
Software engineers design, develop and improve upon the computer programs we daily such as operating systems and social networks. Also, Software engineers could be Applications Software Engineers or Systems Software Engineers.
While the applications software engineers analyze an end user’s needs and develop a custom program to meet them, the systems software engineers control the creation, maintenance, and expansion of an organization’s internal computer systems.
For this IT career path, you need at least a bachelor’s degree in software engineering or a related programming field of study.
However, a portfolio with documented samples or live links to your best applications and software development projects is an advantage.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $106,845.
Also, the Software Engineer growth projection is 24% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who create software for mobile devices.
Mobile devices and applications are changing the way we live. Every important function of our lives is now attached to our mobile devices.
The focus of mobile developers is to write programs inside of a mobile development environment using Objective C, C++, C# or Java programming languages.
To become an IT security specialist, you need to have at least a bachelor’s degree in software engineering or a similar programming-centric field of study.
However, you’ll need a portfolio with samples of completed mobile applications as well as your best development projects boost your pay.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $105,137.
Also, the IT security specialist growth projection is 31% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT professionals who create designs and build computer systems.
The Computer Hardware Engineer or Computer Designer, with their skills to develop the next generation of computer systems, will always remain in high demand. This is because technology continues to play a vital role in our everyday lives, and will continue to in a very long time.
For this IT career path, you’ll need to have at least a bachelor’s degree in computer engineering. You may also have a degree in electrical engineering or a similar computer hardware-focused field of study.
However, the average salary for this IT career job is $103,810.
Also, the Computer Hardware Engineer growth projection is 5% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT professionals who plan, direct and support IT initiatives.
They make sure that their team or department operates optimally and in tandem with organizational goals. The IT manager also works closely with senior executives and department heads to identify, develop and support new technology solutions.
To become an IT manager, you need to have at least a bachelor’s degree education in IT such as computer science in addition to some level of technical experience.
You’ll need a Master’s of Business Administration (MBA) with a technology concentration to succeed in this role.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $97,461.
Also, the IT manager’s growth projection is 12% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT professionals who oversee large-scale technology projects.
The IT project manager, or IT Operations Manager, ensures that complex technical projects like systems upgrades are completed on time and in line with the budget specifications.
They also plan and coordinate the efforts of the internal project team, third-party contractors as well as consultants to see to the successful completion of projects.
For this IT career path, you need to have at least a bachelor’s degree. Some employers will require you to possess a graduate diploma though.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $97,312.
Also, the IT Program Manager growth projection is 12% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT professionals who organize and manage a company’s data.
Database administrators oversee the business data to make sure it is accurate, available, and secure. Because the corporate database is the heart of key business systems these professionals are crucial to organizations.
Therefore DBAs are recognized and rewarded for the role they play in the organization’s success.
For this IT career path, you’ll need at least a bachelor’s degree in computer systems analysis and other related fields of study.
Even though an MBA in Management Information Systems (MIS) or CIS will advance a DBA’s career, you may still need to get certificates in one or more database management systems (DBMS).
However, the average salary for this IT career job is $93,538.
Also, the database administrator growth projection is 11% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who design and create robots as well as robotic systems.
However, robotics engineering falls into Computer-Aided Drafting & Design, Building, and Research & Development.
To become a Robotic Engineer, you need a strong aptitude for the sciences to first gain acceptance into a relevant robotics engineering degree program.
There are presently no specific robotics undergraduate degree programs, however. Prospective college students study mechanical or electronic engineering instead.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $89,481.
Also, the Robotic Engineer growth projection is 7% from 2016 to 2026.
These are specialists who shape the way we interact with the digital world.
User interface (UI) developers, or UI Engineers, combine programming, psychology and creative design to create user-friendly controls for software and hardware.
To succeed in this field, you must be able to build an interface that behaves as users would it expect.
For this IT career path, you need at least a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science or any related field of study, as well as a strong portfolio.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $77,379.
Also, the User Interface Developer growth projection is 19% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who create web pages and web-based applications.
Web developers build web pages and web-based applications that make up the Internet. Also, a basic web developer role includes collecting, planning website layout and navigation, coding the web pages, and then testing and optimizing for superior user experience.
Furthermore, a skillful web developer is fluent in the programming languages that run the World Wide Web.
To become a Web Developer, you will need to have hands-on experience and mastery of the programming languages your prospective employer is using.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $75,487.
Also, the Web Developer growth projection is 15% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT professionals who manage IT solutions to drive business goals.
Computer systems analysts equip themselves with an understanding of both business and technology. With these, they analyze the organization’s current computer systems & procedures, as well as recommend strategic changes to steer the organization forward.
However, the systems analyst’s main objective is to maximize the return on investment (ROI) of an organization’s IT expenditure.
To become a Computer System Analyst, you’ll need at least a bachelor’s degree in computer systems analysis and other related fields of study.
Meanwhile, as this IT career path deals with both business and IT, you may require a Master of Business Administration (MBA) as well.
However, the average salary for this IT career job is $74,285.
Also, the computer system analyst job market employment growth projection is 9% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who merge creativity, technical skills and a passion for gaming to create top-notch games.
To fit into this IT career job, you need to love gaming as well as nurture a desire to learn the latest programming, art, and media production skills.
However, most video game designer jobs fall into Game Artist, Game Designer, or Game Programmer.
To become a Video Game Designer, you will require a degree or certificate in game design and video game development or software engineering. You may also need to have a specialized two to four-year game art degree or traditional art degree.
These certifications/degrees depend on your area of specialization, however.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $73,182.
Also, the Video Game Designer growth projection is 30% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT professionals who manage networks & communications systems.
The Network administrator installs, supports, and manages the networks and computer systems that guarantees smooth information flow.
They also implement and maintain network hardware and software, troubleshoot network problems, as well as ensure network security, availability and performance standards.
To become a Network Administrator, you need to have an undergraduate or graduate degree in computer science or any related field.
Networking certifications, such as CompTIA’s Network+ and Cisco’s CCNA will also give you an edge.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $68,156.
Also, the Network Administrator growth projection is 6% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who write the code that runs computer operation.
Computer programmers interpret project specifications from software and systems engineers into a script of logical instructions for computers to function with. In other words, they make computer systems and applications work.
To be successful in this IT career path, you’ll have to be knowledgeable in a range of programming languages because each language has a specific set of strengths.
For this IT career path, you need Hands-on programming experience. The more program language you know, the better your chances of securing bigger spots in this IT career path.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $67,090
Also, Computer Programmer employment growth projection is 7% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who create 3D motion graphics and visual effects.
Computer Animators creatively design stunning visual animations for film, television, video games, mobile apps, and even websites. By the job title, you should know that these professionals use computer software and hardware to do their jobs.
Furthermore, this IT career path is ideal for entrepreneurs who don’t wish to work under anyone.
To become a Computer Animator, you should have at least a Bachelor’s degree in computer animation, multimedia design, graphic design, or a related field of study. However, to qualify for a job in this career IT path, you’ll need your demo reel and portfolio to speak for you.
However, the average salary for this IT career job is $51,463.
Also, Computer Animator employment growth projection is 8% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who fuse creativity and technology to create visually engaging graphics that passes a message.
The graphic designers’ duties include designing web pages, laying out catalogs and newsletters, designing logos, as well as any other interactive medium your clients want.
Furthermore, Self-employment opportunities are abundant for talented designers with an entrepreneurial spirit and take their job seriously.
For this IT career path, you’ll an undergraduate or graduate degree in graphic design or a similar field in the creative arts. Meanwhile, hands-on graphic design experience may be more important than your degree.
However, the average salary for this IT career job is $48,561.
Also, the graphics designer growth projection is 4% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who provide technical support for IT end-users.
Help desk technicians are crucial to the IT workforce of every organization. They not only keep the technologies that organizations rely on for running the business up-to-date but also running smoothly.
Basically, their job is to provide technical support and troubleshooting services to end-users who need assistance with either their computer hardware or software. An organization may have an In-house technician or a Remote one, or both.
To become a Help Desk Technician, you don’t need a degree certificate. However, a specialized certificate in PC repair or IT/help desk support, as well as a degree program in computer information systems (CIS) will raise your salary.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $44,402.
Also, the Help Desk Technician growth projection is 11% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who manage Electronic Patient Data.
With large-scale federal funding and aggressive legislation for medical practices to adopt standardized electronic records in the U.S, it’s a good time to be a Health Information Technician.
These professionals use specialized computer programs and administrative techniques to ensure that patients’ electronic health records (EHRs) are complete, accurate, accessible and secure.
Medical Coding, Medical Billing, and Cancer Registry are some of the highest paying IT jobs in this career path.
To become a Health Information Technician, you’ll need to have at least an Associates’s degree in health information management (HIM), healthcare IT, or health informatics.
You may need to get certification from the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) to be better qualified.
Meanwhile, the average salary for this IT career job is $44,401.
Also, the Health Information Technician growth projection is 13% from 2016 to 2026.
These are IT specialists who design technical schematics for products & structures.
They use Autodesk’s drafting and design software to prepare 2D and 3D technical drawings. However, these drawings become blueprints for constructing products and structures such as buildings, machinery, toys, and microchips.
Meanwhile, AutoCAD drafting professionals hold a range of job titles such as engineer, drafter, estimator, and architect.
To become a CAD drafter, you should complete at least a two-year associate’s degree program at a technical school or community college. However, a bachelor’s degree program can boost your career, as well as architecture or engineering programs.
Meanwhile, CAD drafting coursework includes mathematics, science, drawing, and design.
However, the average salary for this IT career job is $44,000
Also, CAD drafter’s employment growth projection is 7% from 2016 to 2026.
Information technology or IT is the use of computers to store, retrieve, transmit, and utilize data or information. This is a subset of ICT that is ruling the world.
Its application spans all industry and the salary for this career path is substantial. Not only does an IT career pay you rewardingly for your skills but it also gives you intrinsic satisfaction.
Therefore, if you are IT-oriented, we believe our list of high paying IT careers aids your career decision.