Expert opinions, TECHNOLOGY

How to break into IT with no experience in coding

How to get a job in IT is a very popular question in 2022. I have been repeatedly asked for concrete tips.

Why IT?

IT is a rapidly developing, dynamic and extremely popular sector. Over the past few years, due to the rampant development of technology and a shortage of personnel, IT has been attracting even more attention. The COVID-19 pandemic gave the sector an additional powerful boost when many people lost their jobs and it became obvious that IT experts can work remotely from any corner of the planet and make good money. In addition, numerous IT courses promote the profession and make it even more attractive.

But there is also a downside: there are too many beginners and too few middle and high-level experts, which means that one has to try harder at the start to build a successful career than they would have to in other professions.

The second issue is the salary imbalance between juniors and those above. For this reason, it gets harder for a young expert to move on from a lower position to the middle one and further. These factors are changing the attitude towards IT, which only recently used to be called a gold mine. I personally recommend IT as a career, but you should not expect easy money; you will have to work hard if you want to be successful.

IT jobs without programming requirements

There are currently many IT jobs that do not require coding as a hard skill. For instance:

• Project manager
• Product manager
• UX designer
• Testing engineer
• Analyst
• Data scientist
• Data engineer
• ML expert
• Marketing analyst
• Product analyst
• White hat hacker

In my opinion, it is important to not just want to get into IT, but to pick a specialization. First of all, one should make a deep research into the jobs in question. For instance, if you like to spend hours diving into complex tables, looking for connections and processing large amounts of information, you can try specializations related to data. If you can hardly imagine being a programmer who spends hours writing a code, study other specializations.

Second, you need to answer yourself honestly: are you ready to invest time and efforts in learning a new profession? As in every field, the 10,000-hour rule applies here. It takes 10,000 hours of intensive practice to achieve mastery of complex skills and become a highly paid specialist.

Do I have a chance if I don’t know how to code?

You don’t know how to code, but want to learn? Think about your strong suites and what you are best at: technical or managerial skills. In other words, you should assess your resources and think why you want get into IT – to write code or manage projects and people. There have been several cases in our company when a person applied as a tester and then decided to move on as a developer. But most often, the QA expert careers usually drift toward project management and then toward management of a large team and project.

If you want to become a programmer, you should begin learning right now. Take a look at online courses, they are very different and focused on various specializations. If you can study offline, pick this format because it provides both an immersion into the profession and the social context. You would want to visit meet ups and join the online community to quickly learn the basics with which you will then apply for an internship at an IT company, become part of the team and receive the first work experience description in your CV. Be prepared for a low salary: you have a long way ahead of you, and the company in which you will be having the internship will invest in you more than it can benefit from you it in the beginning.

If you want to pick something that is not related to coding, you will have to learn too. Learn the skills of a projects manager or a testing engineer; there are numerous courses on this as well. It is important that you receive the first experience of working in a team. It will help you familiarize yourself with IT and soon you will be able to adjust your development direction, for instance, to go deeper into product analysis or become an ML expert. In IT, you never stop learning. The concept of lifelong learning is definitely about our profession.

By Vitaly Litvinenko, founder of HOUSE OF APPS

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