Looking for a job? There's a whole industry out there looking for you. Even if you don't know an algorithm from a server farm, you should think hard about looking for employment in the technology sector. That advice comes from Judy Madden, Vice President Global Human Resources for Apttus, a software-as-a-service company that supports procurement for B2B sales. Apttus, which has grown from 30 employees to 600 in seven years is so committed to the idea of hiring non-techies that it actually provides an eight-week training course for many of its new hires. And it's not the only one. If you're considering a job or career change, here are some reasons why the world of tech may be the right place for you.
1. It's where the jobs are.
Other industries wax and wane but, tech bubbles notwithstanding, the tech industry is adding jobs at a dependable clip. Last year, Pew Research published an analysis showing how tech sector jobs had nearly doubled from just over 2 billion jobs in 1997 to just under 4 billion in 2012. And head counts have only grown since then.
2. They need your non-tech skills.
No matter what you do, there's a tech company out there that needs your skills. Know how to make a really good cream puff? Big tech companies like Google could use your baking skills in their famed cafeterias. Or take me. I'm a writer, with a Masters degree in English and no tech training whatsoever. But when I'm not writing this column, most of my work is writing about technology and IT management for big tech publishers and/or big tech companies at sites like this one.
3. Your career can grow rapidly.
Just imagine for a moment what kind of advancement opportunities you might have in a company whose head count has grown by twenty times? And while Apttus is certainly a very fast growing company, it's by no means alone. Small, fast-growing start-up companies are a great place for this kind of rapid advancement. (We at Inc. think these are the best kinds of companies anyhow.) But there are plenty of large tech firms that are still growing, and may offer more benefits.
4. You're passionate about what you do.
I know because you're reading this website. Either you love what you do, or you dream of having a career you could love. That kind of passion works very well in a tech company. "People who are successful at Apttus, with or without technical backgrounds, are passionate, have an adventurous nature, and are willing to try something and fail at it," Madden says. "I have someone who works in recruiting. She doesn't have a technical degree. She pursued a career as an Olympic luge athlete. Did it work out for her? No. But I looked at that intensity and perseverence and thought I would take a chance on this person."
5. Tech culture is fun.
If your idea of the ideal workplace is one where people wear suits and speak in hushed voices, you should probably stop reading this column right now. Unfortunately, you should probably also stop reading if you want a job that you can leave at 5 pm on the dot every evening. 2. You have the right personality 3. They want to train you