Workers in the information technology (IT) field are in high demand. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that employment in IT occupations will grow 15% from 2021 to 2031, which is much faster than average for all occupations.
If you already work in IT, many opportunities are available to learn new skills and expand into different roles. Or if you feel stagnant in your present career, a career in IT offers potential and fulfillment. Here are six promising IT careers to watch in 2023 and beyond.
Information Security Analysts
The U.S. is on track to experience a record number of data breaches in 2023, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center:
- There were 951 publicly reported data breaches in the second quarter of 2023, a 114% increase from the number of incidents reported in the first quarter of the year.
- The total for the first half of 2023 stands at 1,393 data compromise events.
- 2023 is on track to beat the previous all-time high of 1,862 data breaches in 2021.
Information security analysts help protect organizations against such data breaches. Their duties include:
- Creating disaster recovery plans, including steps to take if a breach occurs
- Implementing security measures that ward off breaches
- Monitoring computer networks for breaches and investigating them if they happen
“Our current cyber landscape is driving the increased need for information security analysts,” says Shaila Rana, faculty member at Purdue Global and founder of CyberSecure, a cybersecurity awareness training and consulting firm. “With the rise in cyber threats, data breaches, threat actors, and more, there's a new and heightened focus on cybersecurity, especially ransomware attacks. Organizations are investing more in cyber measures to protect their data and systems and to be compliant with a multitude of different laws and regulations.”
Information security analyst jobs are expected to grow 35% from 2021 to 2031, which is much faster than the average for all occupations, according to the BLS. For this career, the BLS recommends at least a bachelor's degree in computer and information technology or a related field.
How to Become an Information Security Analyst
Purdue Global has four programs that prepare you to be an information security analyst:
>>Read More: Infographic: Top 10 Worst Data Breaches of All Time
Software developers build computer programs, applications, and systems that run devices and control networks. Software developers must analyze existing systems and create better ways of running them with technology.
“Software developer is a really in-demand job with diverse projects,” says Rana. “You have the opportunity to create innovative solutions and contribute to the development of cutting-edge technology. Independent, creative thinkers often do very well in this role.”
Software developer jobs are expected to increase 25% between 2021 and 2031, according to the BLS, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. To become a software developer, the BLS reports that typically at least a bachelor's degree in information technology or a computer science-related field is required.
How to Become a Software Developer
Purdue Global has five programs that prepare you to be a software developer:
>> Learn More: 6 Myths About Software Developers and Development
Computer and Information Research Scientists
Computer and information research scientists aim to innovate and solve existing problems in computer hardware and software. They analyze issues, develop theories and models to address those problems, collaborate with scientists and engineers, develop new computing languages and software systems, and design and conduct experiments to test the operation of those systems.
“Being a computer and information research scientist is a really exciting job that allows people to be at the forefront of technological advancements,” says Rana. “You have the opportunity to contribute to the field and drive innovation, come up with solutions, and shape the future of computer technologies. This field is constantly evolving, so there's always new work to be done.”
The BLS projects that employment of computer and information research scientists will grow 21% from 2021 to 2031, much faster than the average for all occupations. To become one, the BLS reports that typically a master’s degree in computer science or a related field is needed. Additional experience may also be required.
How to Become a Computer and Information Research Scientist
Purdue Global offers the Master of Science in Information Technology program, which prepares you to become a computer and information research scientist.
Database Administrators and Architects
Data gives insights that can fuel a company’s growth and alerts organizations to potential trends that may affect them. According to a report from Market Data Forecast, the global big data market size is expected to reach USD 229.4 billion by 2025, up from USD 138.9 billion in 2019.
“Database administrators and architects are critical because data is becoming more valuable than gold these days,” Rana says. “Data needs to have adequate management, adequate storage, and proper analysis techniques. Subsequently, the need for database administrators and architects rises as well — and I believe we’ll see growth in this field for years to come.”
Database administrators ensure data security, back up and restore data, test database structure, and maintain databases. Database architects design and build new databases for systems and applications, code new data architecture, integrate existing databases or infrastructure, and check for errors or inefficiencies.
The BLS reports that employment of database administrators and architects is projected to grow 9% from 2020 to 2030, which is faster than the average for all occupations.
How to Become a Database Administrator
Purdue Global has two programs that prepare you to be a database administrator:
How to Become a Database Architect
Purdue Global has four programs that prepare you to be a database architect:
>>Read More: What Is a Database Administrator? FAQ Guide
Computer Systems Analysts
A computer systems analyst studies an organization’s current computer systems and designs ways to improve efficiency. They work with managers to determine the IT systems needs within an organization, research varying technologies to see if they can increase efficiency, create ways to add functionality to existing computer systems, and test systems to make sure they work as expected.
“This person plays a vital role in bridging the gap between business needs and tech solutions,” says Rana. “Historically, IT has been very siloed from the rest of the organization. Today’s computer systems analysts implement IT solutions that reflect overall business missions, goals, and organizational culture, and they address how to align IT and business values to get the most out of your IT assets.”
The BLS projects that employment of computer systems analysts will grow 9% from 2021 to 2031, faster than the average for all occupations. Computer systems analysts typically need a bachelor’s degree to enter the occupation, according to the BLS.
How to Become a Computer Systems Analyst
Purdue Global has three programs that prepare you to be a computer systems analyst:
Want to Enter the World of IT or Grow Your IT Career?
“Organizations, individuals, and communities are undergoing a digital transformation to improve efficiency, automate processes, and reduce the cost and resources to do everyday activities. This transformation requires professionals who have the knowledge and skills to manage these digital technologies, infrastructures, software, and data management systems. This is creating massive job opportunities in the IT field.”
Shaila Rana, IT faculty member, Purdue Global
Perhaps you've been working in IT for years, and you need a degree to move up in the field. Or maybe you work in another field, and you’re looking for a career change. Whichever one describes your situation, there are numerous information technology careers available — if you have the right qualifications.
Some IT pros choose to expand their education so they can move into leadership or management roles. Others may not work in IT at the moment, but the right educational foundation can help them enter this growing field.
Purdue Global offers online IT programs that enable you to continue working while you study. You can learn from anywhere in the world, as long as you have access to the internet. Learn more about Purdue Global's online IT degree programs. If you'd like more information, contact us today.