6 unconventional jobs you can get with an IT or business degree
Good compensation and benefits, doing meaningful work, and having the opportunity to advance – those elements have always been what employees desire in a career. But do these desired job qualities have to come at the expense of discovering new careers?
"Demand for cybersecurity and finance professions has been on the rise across many industries, and with good reason. Business and IT (information technology) degrees are among the most versatile in today’s dynamic workforce, thanks to a combination of globalization and innovation," says Thomas Boyd, PhD, dean of Kaplan University's School of Business and Information Technology. "The skill sets associated with these fields have evolved to the point where organizations are redefining conventional job descriptions or creating new positions altogether."
Intriguing IT careers
It’s no surprise that IT grads see great career potential as a cybersecurity professional. The demand for this occupation by corporations and governments, large and small, continues to surge in the face of ongoing threats to intellectual, financial and personal properties. But areas such as information forensics and mobile computing also offer graduates with an IT degree a chance to find themselves working in unique professions, such as:
* Penetration tester (a.k.a., "ethical hacker" or "white hat") – Organizations hire penetration testers to improve their security platforms by paying them to breach the system. "White hats" hunt for vulnerabilities in computer systems, networks and cloud-based applications to spot, exploit and fix vulnerabilities before the bad guy "black hats" do.
* Incident responder – Part detective, part coder, incident responders investigate computer-related crimes within an organization. They discover the problem, mitigate the damages, thoroughly investigate the situation and establish a security protocol to prevent future recurrences.
* UX designer – How much you like and use an app is in the hands of a user experience (UX) designer. They employ a mix of different disciplines – such as interaction design, information architecture, visual design, usability, and human-computer interaction – to improve customer satisfaction and loyalty through the utility, ease of use, and pleasure provided in the interaction with an application or website.
Business careers that break the mold
Careers in finance, management and accounting are stalwart domains of employment for business graduates. Although saying "conventional" and "business degree" is akin to saying "peanut butter and jelly," you’d be surprised by the alternative job opportunities that are available if you search beyond the traditional job titles:
* Forensic auditor – As a forensic auditor, you can use your accounting knowledge, criminal justice expertise and analytical skills to help law enforcement investigate financial crimes or help companies resolve financial disputes in civil courts.
* E-commerce analyst – With some background in computer science or statistics, these business administration professionals can analyze customer e-commerce data for behavioral or other trends to create customer profiles for demographic targeting.
* Corporate entertainment accountant – To maximize box office revenues, these accountants are called upon to set budgets for production companies and help the producers and artists stick to them throughout the process. Other opportunities in this field include jobs in the hospitality, video gaming and music industries, so be prepared to rub some elbows or travel to exotic locations.
Sixty-seven percent of employers say they plan to hire recent college graduates this year, according to a survey by CareerBuilder. With hiring set to increase, earning a degree in business or information technology can help professionals find exciting and rewarding careers. To learn more about Kaplan’s IT and business programs, visit the Programs tab at www.kaplanuniversity.edu.