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The Benefits to a Diverse Skillset

Benefits of a Diverse Skillset

A skillset is your ability to complete a task in a given amount of time. It involves the knowledge you have already gained and can apply to a project.

Employers today are moving away from hiring one person for every specialized position. Instead, they are looking for staff who have a broad skillset and can perform multiple duties within the organization. This saves the company money and time.

And if you aren’t hired with a diverse skillset, you may be asked to obtain additional skills once employed. In fact, many companies are asking their current employees to expand their knowledge and skills based on the needs of the company, rather than hiring someone new.

Employers are looking for people with both soft and hard skillsets.

 

Soft Vs. Hard Skillsets

Skillsets can include both soft and hard skills. Soft skills refer to interpersonal skills and they often determine how well you can relate to others. Examples include communication, flexibility, time management and problem solving.

Soft skills can be learned but mostly tend to come naturally. They can be compared to personality traits or innate talents. While you can put soft skillsets on your resume, they are more difficult to show to an employer who is interviewing you for a job.

It’s important you be able to share examples from times that you have used soft skills. And you will need to continue to show these abilities while on the job.

Hard skills are those you have been taught and you have proof that you learned them. Proof can come in the form of a diploma, class completion certificate, or achievement letter. Examples include the results of a typing exam, computer programming certificates, licenses, or speaking a second language.

Having a diverse hard skillset has many benefits, especially when working within one industry.

 

Diverse Skillsets Add Value

Every employee wants to feel valued on the job. Having a diverse skillset gives you this value. The more duties you can perform, the more needed you will be to an organization. For example, if a person has the hard skills of a marketing degree, combined with the soft skills of leadership and teamwork, you will be able to perform many tasks.

You can supervise and lead others, as well as implement marketing plans, analyze data, and help promote and sell products or services.

Having a specialized skill is still important but having a diverse set of specialty skills makes you more valuable.

 

Diverse Skillsets Motivate and Engage

When you are equipped with multiple skillsets, you can avoid getting bored on the job. Those with one specialized skillset may be excellent workers but get burned out on repetitive tasks. Yet, they do not have any other tasks they are able to complete.

Diverse skillsets allow you the variety within a job that can keep you engaged and excited to complete tasks. This variety keeps you motivated because each day on the job may be different, bringing new challenges.

 

Diverse Skillsets Make You Adaptable

Being an employee who can adapt to many work situations is desired in today’s market. Executives and leaders are looking for staff who can be assigned to a variety of work projects without the need to provide training or hire additional help.

Having diverse skillsets means you can adapt to the needs of the company. For example, if you have a business degree, you can perform tasks in areas such as marketing, management, accounting, finance, sales and more.

Your employer will feel comfortable moving you among departments because you have the skills to meet the needs of each.

 

Diverse Skillsets May Lead to More Pay

Having diverse skillsets does not mean you will automatically get more money for a job than your competitor. However, it does give you more ammunition when you go to request more pay for the duties you perform.

Once you have built a strong resume and have proven yourself within the company, you will have numerous examples of how having your diverse skillset has benefited the organization. This is what you can use to ask for an increase in pay.

If your company does not see your value, then you can use this same information to apply for a higher paying job with another organization.

You may also want to start a side job with your diverse skillset. You could provide consultation services to non-competitors within the industry. Or, you could have a home-based business after hours and on the weekends.

There are many entrepreneurial opportunities available when you have a diverse skillset.

 

Diverse Skillsets Help You Leave a Job

Everyone would like to find their perfect job at the beginning of their career, work there until retirement, and leave with a great pension that will support them until they die. This happens less and less with each year.

People are switching jobs, seeking better opportunities much more frequently. Some reports show the rate of people changing jobs is higher than ever, with some claiming to change jobs every two or three years.

If this is true, having a diverse skillset is only going to help you when changing jobs. It could possibly give you that edge over other candidates fighting for the same job.

When you are interviewing for a new job, make sure you emphasize your diverse skillset and provide examples of how your skillset can benefit their company specifically.

In conclusion, having a diverse skillset has many benefits professionally. It also can benefit you personally. Learning useful skills and knowledge can give you personal confidence that is needed on the job. Knowledge truly can be empowering.

There are many ways to acquire a diverse skillset. Professional training opportunities within your company, attending conferences, and specialized continuing education.

One of the best ways is to attend your local college who offers certification and fast-track training programs in your specialty area, keeping you up-to-date on the latest improvements that can benefit your company and keep you valuable to the organization.

Maintaining a Balance Between School and Work

Balance between school and work

If you are attending school and working at the same time, then you know how stressful this can be at times. You may have found your work responsibilities interfering with your school duties, or vice versa.

This can lead to a feeling of being overwhelmed, disorganized and frustrated if not managed correctly. It can even make you feel like giving up.

But do not give up. There are many steps you can take to maintain a better balance between your work and school. Below are just a few examples you can implement today.

 

Schedule Help

No one has super powers. No one can do everything in a day or even a week without help of some kind. It is more than okay to ask for help from others. Or, pay someone for help. For example, if you have children and need a few hours of quiet time to complete homework, hire a family member or friend for those hours.

Allow them to watch your children while you work. If you can’t afford to pay, try bartering. If cleaning the house or grocery shopping is taking up too much time, hire someone else to do it.

Figure out which parts of your life can be entrusted to someone else, and then ask for help.

 

Enjoy Work and Studies

Many claim that if you choose to work or study in a field that you find fun and enjoyable, the work you must do will not feel like work at all.

Choose a program to study based on what you can envision yourself doing for many years to come. Choose something that makes you feel rewarded and valuable. Choose a program that offers you joy.

Do not choose to work in an industry just for the money or because someone else thinks you will be good at it. Make your choice based on what will make you feel fulfilled and happy.

 

Implement Time Management Strategies

Time management means you know where your time is spent throughout each day. You know this because you have planned and prioritized your time.

Making a to-do list, getting organized, and you have left a buffer time in between appointments to give you a little extra time when needed. Other great time management strategies include saying “No”. You must avoid saying yes to every request made of you.

If you continue to do this, you will not be able to maintain a balance between work and school.

Use calendars, alarms and during times where you find yourself waiting, make that time count by answering emails or calls.

 

Make Your Health a Priority

If you are not healthy both mentally and physically, you will struggle to do well in both work and your studies. You must agree to treating yourself well by eating healthy foods, getting proper sleep and finding some time for exercise.

When you are unhealthy, you may find it difficult to concentrate and stay focused. You may become more irritable and frustrated easily, making it hard to complete your work.

Poor health will eventually lead to missed days at work and school, putting you behind deadlines in both areas.

Make the efforts to treat yourself well. Participate in simple activities that are known to improve mental and physical abilities. Take long baths, eat more fruits and vegetables, drink herbal teas, meditate and practice yoga. These are a few examples of how pampering yourself will lead to better results at work and school.

 

Setting Goals

Short-term and long-term goals are important at work and school. They show you whether you are making progress and if not, they show you why not. Short-term goals should be geared towards what needs to be done in the next few weeks or months.

Long-term goals center around what you want to accomplish in the next year or more. Goals can even have sub-goals that can help you reach your major goals. For example, if you have a long-term goal of finishing college, your sub-goals can focus on taking certain classes, practicum, job shadowing and more.

Goals should be organized and have a time and date attached to them and when you accomplish a goal, reward yourself.

 

Reward Yourself

Rewarding yourself each time you reach a goal or milestone is a great way to maintain balance between school and work. Rewards show you have made progress and for that progress, you deserve something special.

Rewards can give you something to look forward to as well. And they don’t have to be huge, over the top events. You don’t want to give yourself a cruise to the islands when completing one course or one project at work.

Instead, find smaller rewards, like a new pair of shoes or a movie and dinner night. You have earned these rewards. Enjoy them.

 

Communicate Your Needs

No one can read your mind, not at work and not at school. If you are struggling, tell someone. Speak to someone about what you need.

Communication can happen in many different forms. You can call someone, meet with them in person, email, or even text someone.

If you do not tell your boss you are feeling overwhelmed, he or she may continue to give you more work. If you don’t talk to your professors and explain why you need extra time on a project, they will not be able to help you.

Don’t be afraid to open up and express your concerns with others who can help.

 

Believe in Yourself

You can succeed at balancing school and work. Look at all the great things you have done to get you to this point.

Remind yourself that going to school and working at the same time is a temporary situation. You will be graduating from college one day and the stressors of balancing school and work will no longer exist.

Find ways to affirm yourself and keep your confidence high. Never stop believing you can accomplish the goal of going to school and working. You can do it.

What to Keep in Mind When Choosing a Major?

Choosing a Major

Choosing a major is a big deal. It will determine your career path and future life decisions. But choosing a major often sounds much harder than it is. Many people get overwhelmed due to the number of decisions that need to be made to start your journey to getting a college degree.

You must choose which school to attend and how to attend, either online or on-campus. You must choose if you will attend part-time or full-time. You must decide how you will pay for college and whether attending classes will affect your lifestyle.

If you break down the process of choosing a major into small steps, you are likely to find it easier to narrow down your options.

Below are some of these small steps. They will help you focus on more than just a major that sounds okay. They will help you dig deep and search for answers that may help you avoid wasting time in the wrong degree program.

 

Natural Talents

Recognizing your natural talents is one way to help you when choosing a major. You want to pick an area in which you can use your talents in some way. When you are already good at something, learning and growing becomes easier.

To find your innate talents, make a list of your strengths. Think of all the times that people have complimented you on a task you completed or something you achieved. For example, your teacher told you many times that you are a good writer. This is a sign that you have a natural writing talent.

There are many employers, in many different fields, looking for people with great writing skills.

 

Interests and Passions

Combined with your natural talents, your interests and passions should be considered. Interests can be the things you enjoy doing in your spare time. Consider hobbies and activities you feel drawn to do because they make you feel good.

Interests leave you feeling positive and happy. When you are finished doing something and you say to yourself, “I’d like to do that again” is an interest.

Your passions are things you feel drawn to do to serve others or make a difference in your community or in society. Passions drive you to help making someone else’s life better. Some people are passionate about supporting literacy, others want to improve situations for the homeless.

Passions can be based on your personal missions for living.

 

Job Outlook

Once you have established your passions, interests and talents, it’s important to try and match those with a degree program that has potential for long-term stability and growth in the market. You do not want to choose a degree program that will lead to a career that may fade out after a decade.

Research jobs through the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, or interview individuals in different industries to gain enough knowledge regarding stability in your field or fields of interest.

 

Wages and Salaries

You will put in a lot of effort and time obtaining your college degree. You are deserving of a job that pays you the wages and salary that meet the lifestyle you wish to live.

Take into consideration what a job will pay before you choose a degree path. You may say that money is not the most important factor. However, in ten years from now you may have a different outlook. So, it is best to at least consider a degree program that will allow your finances to grow as you grow.

 

Time You Want to Spend in College

There are many degree program paths today. Some choose to attend a two-year or associate degree program. Others choose to get a four-year, or bachelor’s degree, and some continue an additional year or two to acquire a master’s level degree.

Today, many local colleges offer fast-tracking training and certificate programs that last less than a year and get you into the workforce the quickest.

Once you decide how long you want to be in school, you can begin searching programs that match your interests, talents, passion and salary expectations.

The list of options should be narrowed down at this point. To further narrow it, look at the cons of each degree program and the careers associated with them.

 

The Cons

You have likely already looked at the pros of the jobs and degree programs you are considering. Looking at the cons is just as important when trying to make a big decision.

Weighing the cons against the pros can speed up your decision making. What are the disadvantages and advantages of each potential degree program? What aspects pop out that make you grimace or think to yourself, “that is not what I want to do”?

Once you have thoroughly analyzed the cons, compare them to the pros. Do the pros make it easier to accept a negative factor? Or is there not a fair trade off between the two? When the cons outweigh the pros, your decision just became easier.

 

Who Can Help You?

Another positive step you can implement when choosing a major is to reach out to the professionals who can help guide your decision. Academic and career counselors have many tools and assessments that can help you narrow down your number of options.

Assessments take information based on your interests, passions and talents and develop several areas of degree interests that match your data.

You can also reach out to professionals already working in the field. Interview them to see they like their job and which degree did they obtain to help them reach their career goal.

In conclusion, there are many steps you can take when choosing a major that can help you develop a great list of guidelines. You will also learn a lot more about yourself, your dreams and your goals.

These are all characteristics to keep in mind when sorting through the many degree programs. They can help you narrow your options and eventually arrive at the perfect degree program for you.

How the Availability of Online Classes Has Changed Education

Availability of Online Education

Since the early 2000’s, online education has been changing and improving education in many ways. When it first began, students used email and even discs to communicate with teachers. Since then, programs like Blackboard and Canvas have transformed online education.

They offer many benefits including online resources, teleconferencing, webinars, discussions with classmates and much more. These benefits are the reason online enrollment continues to grow each year.

According to Inside Higher Education, nearly one-third of all students take at least one online class. In addition, they report the number of students enrolled exclusively online grew by 15% in the last few years.

To many, this means the traditional way of going to college is declining and for colleges who do not offer online education, they will notice the biggest decrease in enrollment.

There are many reasons for these changes. Keep reading to discover details on how online class availability has changed education.

 

You Can Attend from Anywhere

If it is your dream to go to college in California, but you live in New York, don’t worry. You can attend college online from across the Nation and around the world.

Online college eliminates the requirement to live on or close to campus. This benefit satisfies the desires of many students who want to attend a college that is a better fit for them, even if it is far away. For example, a student wanting to take a fast track business program at a local college in California, rather than the four-year program at a college near their home, can do so.

They can also choose when they take the course.

 

Eliminates Time Constraints

Many people have wanted to take college courses but due to work or family responsibilities, they were not able to attend a class on-campus during the specific course time limits. Most traditional campuses offer several courses, day and evening, but they are based on times that are good for the school.

Taking an online class allows the student to go to class when it fits their schedule. This is a huge advantage to those who have many other responsibilities. They can pick the best time of day to complete their coursework, based on their lifestyle.

 

Better Accommodates Those with Disabilities

Those with physical disabilities attending traditional universities must prepare in advance to get to campus for classes. They may need special transportation, the classroom may need to be rearranged, and help getting in and out of buildings, the parking lot, and more.

Online classes eliminate all those steps by enabling the disabled student to take a class at home, in their environment, that is already set up for their success.

Even students with visual or hearing impairments have the computer systems in their homes to accommodate their needs, while many classrooms require extra efforts to set them up.

 

Makes Research Easier

Before the advancements in online education, to research for a paper or project a student would have to travel to the campus library and spend hours looking for specific information. They had to do this within the time frame of the library’s set hours.

For some, this meant several trips to the library.

Online education has made it so easy to research any topic. With just a few clicks on the keyboard, you can access an enormous amount of information.

If a student is going to the library today, it is most likely to use the computers to access the internet. There are many companies online that offer free books to students, free access to refereed journals, and unlimited use of other resources.

 

Enhanced Study Groups

Before the internet, study groups took place at an arranged location, at an agreed upon day and time that suited all students attending. Some students would have to miss the opportunity of a study group.

With the use of the internet today, study groups can take place online, at any time of the day. If the students want to meet at midnight, they can log in and meet at midnight, from wherever they are. They can also record the study group session so others, who couldn’t attend the original group, can watch the discussion later.

 

Saves Everyone Money

Attending traditional style education costs a lot of money due to the need for added expenses. As a college, they have staff and faculty expenses, liability insurance expenses, laboratory expenses, electric and utilities expenses, and much more.

When a college offers online courses, they cut down on all these expenses. They can save money by offering virtual coursework.

As a student in a traditional college setting, you also have expenses. From transportation to textbook and lab fees, they cost more on campus.

As an online student, however, you can access cheaper textbooks and have zero expenses when it comes to traveling. Furthermore, online courses cost less than on-campus courses per credit hour.

 

Adapts to Your Schedule

Obtaining a degree once meant you had to choose between attending college classes every day during the daytime or finding a job after high school graduation. As time went on, night classes were offered. This meant you could work full-time and go to college, but that you would miss out on family time and you would likely be exhausted at the end of each day.

Online education allows you to work full-time and take courses when you are rested and have the time to take them. You do not have to sit in a classroom for a specific number of hours each week.

Online, you can stop and start your classwork as your time permits. If you get half way through a lesson on your lunchbreak and finish later in the evening, that’s okay.

In conclusion, these are just a few of the positive ways online classes have changed education. Ultimately, these advantages are motivating more people to get a college education. It is giving anyone, no matter their situation, the opportunity to gain more knowledge and improved skills, a win-win for everyone.

The Benefits of an MBA Over a Bachelor’s Degree

Why MBA Over Bachelor's Degree

In the field of business, having a master’s degree gives employers many reasons to show interest in you. You will be equipped with many skills that can set you apart from those who may have a bachelor’s degree or less.

A bachelor’s degree is great to have but extending your knowledge to include master level courses is better.

While in your bachelor’s degree program, you learned the basics of all areas of business administration. You learned the basics of accounting, entrepreneurship, economics, human resources, marketing and finance. Getting an MBA increases the knowledge you have in each of these areas.

You become more of an expert in the field in which you choose to specialize.

Other than setting you apart and expanding your expertise, MBA degrees have many other benefits. A few of these are discussed below.

 

Quick Return on Your Investment

According to US News reports, a person who chooses fast track programs, or programs less than one year, to receive an MBA may be able to recoup the money they spent in two and a half years.

There are few other programs of study that can offer a return on investment like this. Other degrees can take five or ten years to see the financial aspects pay off. There are still others that take longer than that.

With an MBA, your earning power can increase dramatically in just a few short years. This is one of the first ways you can show you know how to make wise financial decisions on smart investments, like your education.

 

Improve Communication Skills

Great leaders in every business know how to communicate with customers, employees, contractors and with friends and families.

Effective communication is a skill. It does not happen overnight. In fact, it takes a lot of practice to hone your skills to the point they enhance your business.

In fast track MBA programs, you will learn how to communicate what you want, in a way that will get results the fastest. You will also learn to listen well to others, which is an essential part of communication.

You can figure out what skills to use to build relationships within your industry. Every person you work with may have a different style of communication. You will be able to learn how to adapt your skills to get the most out of each relationship you build in your professional life.

 

Increased Chances of Getting Hired

According to Poets & Quants, those with an MBA are getting hired by close to 80 percent of employers. These statistics have risen over the last few years.

This means employers find a great deal of value in an MBA and they are searching for specialists in the business field. This could also mean having an MBA could give you a competitive edge over someone with similar experience but less education.

 

Increased Networking Opportunities

Some of the students in your MBA program may already be working in lucrative businesses who are looking for additional employees with MBAs. Being in an MBA program will give you plenty of opportunities to network and show your assets to classmates, as well as professionals in the industry.

Each person you meet while in the MBA program may be able to offer you something positive, from an insider tip to a full-time job or promotion. But it is up to you to capitalize on all the networking opportunities available.

Pay attention to campus calendars and company events. Choose activities that will give you an opportunity to implement your communication skills, as well as have fun and be remembered positively by peers and leaders in your field.

 

Niche Down to the Right Field

With a business degree, you receive a broad range of skills through a broad range of courses. You learn the basics of almost every field in business.

By getting an MBA, you can choose a specific area of study, a niche. Niching down means you choose one or two areas to focus on and become a specialist in. For example, rather than being a graduate with a master’s degree in business, you can become an MBA graduate with a specialty in finance or accounting.

 

Improved Self-Confidence

To be successful, you need to believe you are successful and that you have the skills necessary to do a great job, no matter what field you are in. There may be times when you don’t have all the answers but the confidence in yourself to get those answers will help you in reassuring customers or staff.

Getting a graduate degree can give you a feeling of accomplishment, personal achievement, and self-assurance that you are able to get the job done. When you are confident, others notice. Your peers will notice and may look to you as a resource on the job.

Your employer will notice and may consider you first for a promotion. You can become an influencer, help improve productivity, help others have a positive attitude, and can handle stress at work better than if you didn’t have confidence.

Having a healthy self-confidence can assist you in making good decisions when it comes to taking risks, as well as being able to get others to support your ideas.

 

How to Start an MBA Program?

One of the greatest benefits of an MBA program is that getting started is easy. Your local college will likely have a program to meet your needs. The best local colleges offer a fast track program that allows you to receive your MBA in about ten to twelve months.

In addition, you will be able to take classes online, in a classroom, or both. Depending on your lifestyle and your needs, an MBA program can be tailored so that you will be successful. They will also have a system in place to help you apply for financial support, if needed.

You can start your graduate program journey as soon as today. Reach out to your local college and you will be on your way to becoming an effective leader in your chosen field of study.

Interviewing Etiquette

Interviewing Etiquette

When discussing etiquette for interviews, it means there is a certain way you should behave in the interview. There are rules to follow so that you do not offend your potential employer or the interviewing committee.

This doesn’t mean lie to the interviewer or hide your true personality. It simply means take positive actions that will show you know how to balance your professional and personal lives appropriately.

While there are numerous ways to promote interviewing etiquette, the ones listed below are ones you can easily implement.

 

Show Up Early, But Not Too Early

Arriving ten to fifteen minutes early to an interview, and even once you are hired, is a good way to let your employer know you appreciate your job. It lets them know you care enough to make sure none of their time is wasted.

If you are late to your interview, they may think this is a sign that you will be tardy for work. And this is something employers want to avoid.

Avoid showing up too early, however. You don’t want to sit for a long time, getting bored. Your boredom may show. You also do not want to put pressure on the interviewers and make them feel rushed, especially if they have an interview before yours.

 

Dress Appropriate for the Job

Your appearance can make a positive or negative impact on your interview. It’s important to dress according to the companies dress code. By now you have researched the company and the job for which you have applied.

If you are interviewing for an office job, where a nice suit. If you are interviewing for a maintenance or landscaping job, a suit might be over the top. Instead, wear nice pants and top. Make the effort to find out the proper dress code before you go to the interview.

 

Watch Your Mouth

What you say and how you say is important when interviewing. Using slang, cursing or making jokes of any kind are not appropriate etiquette.

Introduce yourself, answer the questions they ask, and avoid rambling or jumping to non-relevant topics. The interviewers do not need to know everything about you, only what they ask.

When you leave, it is always a good idea to thank each member of the interview committee. Show appreciation for their time, even if you aren’t feeling like the job is right for you.

Another tip, never talk on your cell phone during an interview. And unless your interview is taking place over a meal, do not eat food or chew gum during the interview.

 

Don’t Show Up Empty Handed

This does not mean show up with a gift, as this would not be good etiquette. However, showing up with proper paperwork that is essential to the job is a good thing to do. Have copies of your resume, letters of reference, and any other documents that show you are a good fit for the job.

You may not know in advance how many people will be interviewing you. It is okay to take more copies than needed.

 

Show Your Positivity

Employers want to hire people who are going to bring positive vibes to the work environment. Show them your positivity by smiling, acting eager to learn, and being interested in them personally and professionally.

Do not speak negatively of previous employers. Do not roll your eyes if they say something you don’t like. Do not argue with the person interviewing you. Know the difference between answering assertively and aggressively.

 

Prepare a List of Questions

Before the interview, jot down some questions you would like to know before leaving your interview. Some of the answers may come naturally during the interview. You can ask them anything that doesn’t come up.

Make sure the questions are appropriate to the job. Be ready to explain the reason for the question. For example, if you ask about flexible scheduling, be ready to explain your other priorities that require your hours to vary.

 

Know Yourself

Don’t wait until the interview to figure out if you are a good fit for the job. Learn all you can about the job ahead of time and practice answering the question of why you are the right person for this job. Most likely, interviewers will ask you what makes you the right choice.

Know your answer to this question long before the interview begins.

Be confident and truthful in your answer. Connect your skills to the requirements of the job. For instance, if you are applying for a manager position, explain how you have managed other people or events in the past.

Be able to tell them how well-rounded your experience is. Don’t forget to share how participating in athletics or debate clubs have helped you build leadership skills. Tell them how your volunteer works have helped you gain compassion.

Find ways to help the employer see you will be a good team player but can also work independently. Show them you can follow directions but also lead when necessary. If you don’t have work related experience to show these qualities, use your experiences from other activities in your life.

 

Follow-Up

The interview doesn’t end when you leave the interview room. It’s proper etiquette to follow-up with the employer to thank them for the time they spent with you, learning more about you, and considering you for hire.

Don’t just send an ordinary thank-you note, however. Send one that stands out. Remind them of why you are right for the job. Introduce new ideas on how you can help their company grow and thrive. Tell them what you really love about their company.

While most people send a letter, you may consider sending a brief thank-you video, or in some way that is relevant to the job. This is another way you can showcase your skills and creativity. Just make sure it is professional and appropriate.

Now that you have an idea of proper interviewing etiquette, you can start your search for that dream job you deserve.

 

Computer and Network Support Training Teaches Applicable Skills for IT Jobs

Computer and Network Support for IT

Information Technology (IT) jobs can vary within the industry. Some IT jobs include installing and maintaining software systems, while others involve creating databases. One of the greatest things about obtaining a degree in IT is that you have so many jobs you can pursue once you graduate.

Because the field of IT is so broad, this means you will need to hold a broad range of skills. Employers will want you to be able to complete multiple tasks within their company. They want to get a lot of expertise for the money they are paying.

They do not want to hire two IT people when just one could do the job for both. Having the right IT skills can benefit you and your employer. The way to obtain these skills quickly is through a computer and network support training program.

Below are a few of the applicable skills that may help you get that IT job for which you have been seeking.

 

Microsoft Networking

Employers will want you to be able to install a network for a Windows server and any workstations that are connected to that server. This means you can set up the programs and monitor them to make sure they are running well and maintaining the server.

Skills in this area also mean when a problem arises, and it usually does, you will be able to troubleshoot the problem and figure out how to fix it without costing the company extra time or money.

 

Network Design and Administration

As a network designer and administrator, you will be weighing the needs of all the users within the system. You will be developing a program that has easy access for some but also strict security and privacy.

You will design a system that is prepared for both breakdowns and the unexpected, as well as room for growth when the company wants to expand.

Other things you may be asked to administer is the backing up of files, connectivity with wireless access points, ethernet cables and more. Having a disaster recovery plan will be essential to an employer who prefers to be prepared rather than taking risks.

 

Server Configuration

Every server is built using multiple technological components. Some of these include hardware, software, memory, hard disk, floppy drives, modems, CD-ROMs, monitors and even the windows operating systems.

It will be good for you to know how to compile and configure all these components in an order that will maximize benefits for the company.

 

LAN and WAN

You will be expected to know the difference between local area networks (LAN) and wide area networks (WAN) when working in the IT industry.

With LAN, your expertise will focus on systems that are more localized like schools, homes and businesses. WANs, on the other hand, cover wider areas like cities and can even allow overseas connections.

LANs, because they are typically confined to a small location, are often much more secure than WANs.

 

Security

Keeping private information private and secure is a technical skill you will need in any job related to IT. Businesses want to prevent other businesses from stealing ideas and notes. Customers need to feel secure that their personal data cannot be stolen and will not be shared with anyone else.

Every system will need specific security programs installed, maintained and upgraded regularly. This will be your job as a specialist in the technology industry.

 

Network Applications

The staff within the company you work will need to transfer files or transfer data from one point to another. Applications help them do this. It will be up to you to establish the network applications your company uses.

Applications often use the internet but there are times when a hardware infrastructure will be needed. Your skills will be to distinguish between the two, install, maintain and repair these applications as needed.

Your main goal will be to make sure everyone in the company, no matter where they are located either locally or around the world, have access to the same applications on a shared server.

These are a few of the top skills you will need working in the technology field.

 

Where to Start

The best way to acquire these skills is through a computer and network support training program. These programs cover all up-to-date trends within the industry, as well as teaches you the basics.

There are great associate degree programs from your local college that can give you all the training relevant to the job you seek. And they can do so in just a couple of years.

Achieving this type of degree can prepare you for taking many certification exams that an employer may require. And if they don’t require a certification, this is something that could give you an edge over competitors.

For example, you can test for certification in network security, switches and routers, hardware and software and even client workstations. Any or all of these prove you learned the skills needed to be successful in your job.

So, whether your job is to work as a contractor, sales consultant, support staff or any other type of technician, the skills you can learn at your local college are invaluable.

These skills can be applied to jobs that are offered in school districts, hospitals, large corporations to small independent businesses. You may even choose to be an entrepreneur and provide homes and businesses your technical services.

Many local colleges offer fast-track training for those who do not wish to obtain an associate degree and want to enter the job market as soon as possible. Some also provide higher education classes for those who wish to continue past an associate level degree, such as in business. Business skills are especially needed for those IT professionals who wish to own their own company.

Because the technology industry is booming, and because almost every house and business today utilize some form of technology, the opportunities for obtaining employment are excellent, especially if you have training such as computer and network support.

The Convenience of Fast Track Training While Working

Enrolling in Fast Track Training

Some sources are calling fast track training better than getting a college degree. Not everyone has the time or the money to invest into getting an associate degree, or bachelor’s degree, or anything higher than that.

In these circumstances, fast track training programs offer the education and experience needed for you to get into, or be promoted in, the career industry you want but without having to wait two to four years.

Fast track training can assist you in getting jobs in growing industries, improve your skills, and become one factor to help get you employed in a field that excites you. If you are already in that exciting field, it can aid you in reaching some of your higher goals.

Fast track training career areas typically include those in the business, hvac, healthcare and computer fields, and can be accomplished best at local colleges. Aside from the advantage of helping you move into a career you enjoy and possibly making more money, fast track training has many conveniences, especially while you are still working. A few of these conveniences are discussed below.

 

Programs Can Be Completed Quickly

Unlike associate and bachelor’s degree programs, fast track training can be completed in about one year. Some programs are a few months longer than others, but on average, you are looking at 12 months to being certified.

This means you may be able to start working in a field of your choice much sooner than others who choose to go into degree programs. You may decide to continue your education later, but with fast track training, you will be able to get a feel for the industry without wasting time away from your current job.

 

Apply What You Learn Immediately

In typical two- or four-year college degree programs, you take your coursework, then find a job in the industry. This means you wait until you graduate to apply the information you have learned in the classroom.

With fast track training, you can apply what you learn in the classroom almost immediately. Because the time when you complete the program and when you can begin working in your chosen field is relatively short, you can start implementing your newly learned skills quickly.

 

Prepares You for High Demand Jobs

Fast track training programs are developed to give you the most useful knowledge in a short time. This helps you obtain jobs that may have more need for new workers entering the field. You may already hold such a job and want to be promoted. Fast track may prepare you for that as well.

If you are dreaming of a different career than the one you have now, you can feel good knowing many good jobs require only a certificate.

Careers that are searching for professionals with specialized certificates in electrician, physical therapy assistant, heating and air conditioning, and computer technicians.

Other areas can include truck driving, bookkeeper and medical technologists or dental assistants.

This means you can obtain your certificate while still working in your current job, without interference and with a much easier transition into something better once it is time for you to make that move.

 

You Can Apply Credits Later On

After you obtain your fast track training certificate, you may decide to continue your education later. You may work for a while in the field of your choice and then decide to get an associate or bachelor’s degree to supplement the training you have already acquired.

With fast track training, you can earn college credits in most programs. Meaning, these credits will transfer to a higher-level program if you choose to extend your education.

This means you will not need to retake any courses, saving you time and money if you go on to pursue a degree. It also means you will not lose any additional time away from work, especially since fast track training programs are so accessible today.

 

Online Courses Available

Online fast track training programs are real, and they are helping people around the world reach career goals. Being able to take your classes online means you can set your own pace, choosing the number of courses you take, and when you take them.

Online courses fit into your lifestyle, not the other way around. You choose when you can work on classwork. You choose the number of hours you can spend each week focused on your training. You can prioritize the training program based on the needs of your personal and professional needs.

If you have work projects that need to take priority one week, you can make them a priority without fear of coursework interfering with your current job. Once your work project is complete, you can refocus on finishing your certificate program.

 

Stay Up to Date with Trends

Fast track training allows students to keep up with the latest technologies and trends in their field of study. Because time is limited, programs ensure you are learning the most important aspects first. This can include everything from computer software, equipment, tools, terminology and more, to help you fit right in with current practices.

For instance, if you fast track into the medical field, the program will train you on the latest medical terminology and software programs used so that when you are more marketable to employers. This also saves your employer from needing to provide you with additional training on the job.

If you stay up to date on trends in your field, you may have an edge over competitors.

Furthermore, keeping up with the trends can possibly make you more valuable at your job too. The more you bring to the table, the more current and future employers will notice.

One final note is that with the fast track training program, you get the networking and mentoring benefits, just as if you were in a two- or four-year program. You get to work with professionals who know the industry and can offer you insight you may not find anywhere else.

With conveniences like these, it is hard to find a reason not to enroll in a fast track training program.

Coming Back to School After Working Makes Sense

Back To School After Working

You may be considering a return to college. Maybe you have recently retired from a job. Maybe you are searching for a new career path. Maybe you have been injured and cannot return to your old line of work. Whatever your reason, returning for a college degree is a great idea that many others like you are doing.

The number of students returning to higher education is on the rise, according to an NBC news report. The Department of Education projected nearly 20 million students enrolled in college classes in 2018, with a portion consisting of students who left work to do so. They claim over 7.6 million of the students were over the age of 25.

The benefits of having a college degree, from associate degrees to bachelor’s degrees, far outweigh the disadvantages. While not every trade or industry requires a college degree, getting one can still help you in many ways.

Below are just a few of these ways that support the idea that coming back to school after working that make sense.

 

New College Formats

Long gone are the days when you must enroll in courses that can only be taken in-person and on-campus. You do not have to schedule your life around a college class anymore. Today, local colleges are taking advantage of online teaching capabilities.

This means you can enroll in a class, participate in the class, and successfully complete the class from the comforts of your home. That’s right. You can graduate with a degree from an accredited college while sitting on your sofa.

But if you prefer to attend classes on campus, you can do that to. You can even develop a learning plan that includes both online and on-campus formatting so you can experience the best of both.

 

Specific Degree Programs Available

Going back to college has previously meant you can obtain a degree in large, general types of programs. For instance, a liberal arts degree is non-specific, but could help you obtain a job in a variety of industries. Because many people were choosing non-specific degree programs, the job force became overwhelmed with general degreed applicants.

This, in turn, decreased the value of a broad degree program. On the other hand, more specific titled degrees became valued.

Local colleges have recognized this change and now offer many trade specific opportunities, in a very short amount of time, to people looking to seek education that will help them qualify for new jobs.

They can choose from degree programs in business, nursing, hvac, and the law. Many of these programs have sub-categories for gaining specialized knowledge. For instance, in business, you can learn accounting, finance, marketing and leadership, depending on the direction you choose.

Or, if you choose the medical industry, you can choose from physical therapy, nursing, x-ray technician, phlebotomist or occupational therapist, to name a few. With so many options, you are sure to find an area of expertise that meets your desired goal.

 

New Career Options

Trade careers are those that require a specific set of skills obtained through specific training and education. Examples of the in-demand trade industries include nursing; medical office administration; accounting; market research; medical assisting; and heating, venting and air conditioning.

The nursing field as seen a 20% increase in jobs recently and the medical office administration office has seen even higher rates, with upwards of 36%. Furthermore, one of the highest fields is in physical therapy assisting, with over 40% increase in number of jobs.

Whatever your dream, it is likely there is a trade specific local college who can help you get there.

 

Very Little Pressure

By enrolling in a local college, there is no pressure placed on you to finish in a specific amount of time. You set your own pace. You decide how many classes you take at a time. You can even decide the time of day you want to attend class.

With online courses especially, you can fit your college dreams into your lifestyle, and not the other way around.

You are also not pressured to finish within a given time, like two or four years. However, many local colleges have degree programs that take less than ten months to achieve a degree or certification and get you into a new career.

You will not likely encounter pressure from the college to hurry up and complete your program. They understand that life happens and can interfere with college plans. You can pick up where you left off if you need to take a break for a semester.

You can also extend the length of time it takes to complete if needed. While there is no pressure from the school, they do offer a wealth of support for every student. They have staff that can meet with you online or in-person to discuss issues and develop resolutions to help you meet your goals.

 

You Are Not Done Being Great

Just because you have ended one job, it does not always mean you are ready to sit around and do nothing. Whether you chose to stop working, or it was out of your control, you most likely still want to feel valued and like a contributor to society and life.

Returning to school can help you achieve that feeling and much more. You can launch a second career, improve the career you already have, start your own business, and of course, find new ways to increase your income.

Gaining skills, even if they aren’t used in the workforce, can give you confidence. Knowledge is powerful and you just never know when your newly acquired skills will be needed. Returning to college opens you to new opportunities that never existed before.

College is a great avenue to meet new people through networking, learn from professionals already working in an industry, and help you get one step closer to achieving your goal.

Any time is a good time to make a return to school. You can start as soon as today.

A Business Degree is Useful for Many Different Paths

Business Degree Many Paths

The National Center for Education Statistics reports business degrees are one of the most popular degrees to obtain in the last few years. They claim over 360,000 people earned a business degree in their recent review. This is out of close to 2 million students who obtained a bachelor’s degree.

These numbers are even higher if you include associate and master level degrees obtained in business.

People are choosing a business degree because the advantages of having one far outweighs the disadvantages. For example, you can earn your business degree at your local college, through both online and on-campus formats. Or, a combination of both.

A business degree can open opportunities in the job market for general, broader job fields such as management, to specific business-related jobs like social media marketer.

With a business degree you also gain many useful skills that can be applied to a variety of tasks. It gives you a chance to network and interact with businesses and their leaders, a skill you will surely need even if you don’t choose a career specific to business.

Finally, a business degree is useful for many different career paths. Below are some of the top career paths chosen by those with a business degree.

 

Accountant

In business programs, you will learn how to implement financial skills that will allow you to work for a company, as their accountant or financial leader. Or, you may choose to sit for the Certified Public Accountants (CPA) test so you can help individuals and companies prepare and submit tax related documents.

With a business degree, you will be able to successfully handle tasks that involve balancing budgets, keeping general ledgers, and utilizing software related to accounting needs.

 

Marketing

Marketing is a huge industry today. There are many avenues where you can show off your marketing skills, from social media to radio and television. As a marketing professional, you will be able to create campaigns for individuals and companies who want to expand their business products or services.

When you study in a business degree program, you will learn how to effectively market using your creativity, and influence to grow the revenue of a business.

You may even choose to be an entrepreneur in the field of marketing, giving you the ability to set your own fees. The more successful campaigns you create, the higher you can ask for your services.

 

Entrepreneur Consultant

A business degree teaches you how to start your own business from the very beginning, including capital needed for start-up, to obtaining clients and reinvesting into your company for growth.

As an entrepreneur with a business degree, you can choose any field, especially as a consultant. You may have a business degree but also a love for computer technology. Combine the two and become a technology consultant for major firms.

Or, you may love the field of education. You can become a consultant to teachers and other educators, teaching them how to get the most financially and personally from their chosen educational field.

You may also want to focus only on finances, another great career path.

 

Finance

With a business degree, you can become a financial analyst, helping companies determine potential for growth. You can assess the needs of a company and create a plan of action for them to expand their products, services and of course, revenue.

Some corporations hire their own finance staff, while others work will work with you on a consultant basis.

Don’t think all business degree jobs are useful sitting at a desk or computer. There are many opportunities for business majors out in the field too.

 

Construction Manager

As a construction manager, you will be responsible for all aspects of a construction job, which can range from large commercial projects to smaller home projects.

You will be required to create a budget and implement plans that keep everyone within that budget. You will be responsible for hiring, and firing, sub-contractors to do various jobs.

The networking and leadership skills you gain in a business degree program will help you in the area of working with the many different types of workers on a job site, from general labor to owners of sub-contracting companies.

A business degree gives you the advantage of knowing how to set deadlines and meet them as well.

 

Additional Career Paths

Every single industry can benefit from someone who has a degree in business. You can even become a professor of business if your goal is to teach.

Additional career paths include becoming a sales person for major companies, like in the pharmaceutical field, which typically have high salaries and exciting perks. You may also choose to be a retail manager, mortgage adviser, environmental engineer or even a research in fields such technology, urban development, or forensic analysis.

If you can think of an area of interest, it is likely you can apply your business skills to it to form a successful career plan. Even doctors are considering business degrees.

A business degree offers you a jump on skills such as critical thinking, time management, project management, problem solving, data analysis and everything relevant to finances and leadership.

You may even find a degree in business motivates you to continue your education. Many students go on to acquire a master’s degree in Business, and some even obtain a Ph.D. in more specific fields such as those that require research and development.

To start your career in business, seek information from local colleges. They typically offer programs that allow you to get into the field quicker than traditional universities. They also offer many ways to obtain your degree, ways that meet the needs of your work and family schedules.

Online business degrees are available at local colleges, allowing you to set your own pace for earning your degree. You can choose to start with an associate degree program. Or, you can join the bachelor’s degree program, both of which will prepare you for employment in a wide range of business-related industries.