Am I Too Old to Switch Careers to IT?

By Staff Writer Published on August 25, 2017

IT is a booming industry, but how can you compete against 22-year-olds who are just entering the job market? Remember, age has nothing to do with intelligence. If you can learn the most current technologies, keep striving, and recognize you own gifts, you’ve got what it takes.

Technologies are always changing

What separates you on the first day of your course in computer science from someone fresh out of high school boils down to one thing: dedication. Technologies, whether mobile or network-based, change at a rapid pace. When you enter the field, you will be entering at the same level as your classmates, learning on the cutting edge of what’s new.

Perhaps you may feel a small comfort level gap at first, but that’s okay. Fifteen years ago, no one had heard of an iPhone®. Now, you see them everywhere, and chances are you’ve had to master the ins and outs of your own smartphone. With a little effort and extra hands-on practice, you can close that gap in no time.

The field shows no signs of slowing down

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in the computer and information technology industry is projected to grow 12 percent between now and 2024, which is faster than the average for all occupations. This is, in part, “…due to a greater emphasis on cloud computing, the collection and storage of big data, more everyday items becoming connected to the internet in what is commonly referred to as the ‘internet of things,’ and the continued demand for mobile computing,” the Bureau reports.

Age conveys reliability and wisdom

When clients meet you for the first time, your age can often make a positive impression. People tend to associate maturity with wisdom, a greater respect for guidelines and deadlines, and the ability to see a project through. Combine that with your knowledge of the latest IT skill set, and your clients will feel like they’re in good hands.

A lot of IT work is done independently

Consider creating a network in a small business or troubleshooting a virus over a remote connection. These tasks are done independently or as a part of a small team. What this means? A second career in IT is perfect for you if you’d prefer a change to a quieter and less crowded environment. Many IT professionals even do their jobs offsite.

Don’t let your age stop you from stepping forward to learn about network security, database management, and programming. These skills are available to people of all ages, and will benefit you, too.