Veterans, Logical and Tenacious, an Ideal Fit for the Technology Industry
The technology industry is still an emerging industry that continues to see annual growth. During the COVID-19 pandemic, employment opportunities in the technology industry continue to be in high demand, with the average salary being two times higher than the national employment wage (CompTIA, n.d.). This trend is nothing new: in just the last decade, the U. S. technology industry boomed to 3.5 million jobs (Patino, 2020).
According to Software Developer Ludo Fourrage, CEO of Nucamp Coding Bootcamp, veterans are the perfect candidates for technology jobs. “We find that the logical mind is really found in many veterans and active-duty members are people who are presented with very complex situations and have to find the right way of approaching it. That mindset works really well when it comes to building software” (Turner, 2020).
Another way in which veterans are a good fit for the demands of the technology industry is the attitude of continuous improvement and development that they possess. The technology industry requires continuous training and upgrading of skills as the industry changes, making veterans ideal candidates.
A common misconception is that individuals must have mathematical experience to break into the industry. However, a broad and diverse pool of individuals can learn to code, and outsiders are often hired in the technology industry. Mathematical knowledge is not a requirement. In fact, many veterans can easily leverage the technical and organizational skills developed during their service to secure and prosper in careers in the technology industry (Torres, 2019).
Veterans who have transitioned into technology jobs after their service provide proof that the skills developed and refined in the military were critical to success in their current positions. Sheila Jones, a National Guard veteran and Process Analyst at Cisco, attributes the team-building skills learned in the service to her success in her current role. AJ Kelly, an Information Security Engineer at Telesis, credits his time in the Air Force with preparing him to be a disciplined worker who is also able to navigate bureaucracy while compartmentalizing different aspects of the job. Kelly Macleod, National Guard veteran and Project Manager at Topcoder, says her tour in Iraq taught her tenacity which helps in her current job (Torres, 2019).
For veterans interested in the technology industry, it is important to consider which jobs are in high demand and which jobs are expected to see growth in the future. Technology positions often have lucrative salaries and offer a good work-life balance. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median wage for a job in the technology industry was $84,284 in 2018, with annual compensation ranging from $51,000 to $138,000. Wages typically differ greatly based on city and state. In locations like New York City, NY and San Jose, CA, some of the top tier technology jobs pay in the hundreds of thousands of dollars to millions annually. Location is important, but many positions offer remote opportunities, increasing flexibility. If remote work isn’t a good fit for the veteran, living in or the near the location of a position offers benefits like the ability to participate in company activities, being in closer proximity to projects, and also comradery with like-minded colleagues.
For information on job opportunities in the technology industry and other available positions, visit the National Labor Exchange website. For more information on trends of technology jobs, visit https://www.cyberstates.org/, a website created by CompTIA, developed to give up-to-date on technology workforce analytics.
Patino, M. (Mar 2020). However You Slice It, the Geographic Disparity in Tech Jobs Is Growing. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-03-09/mapping-the-growing-concentration-of-tech-jobs
Cyberstates.org. (2021). 2020 Tech Industry Job Market & Salary Trends Analysis | Cyberstates by CompTIA. https://www.cyberstates.org
Torres, R. (2019). 5 veterans share their tech industry transition stories. https://www.ciodive.com/news/veterans-tech-workforce/566965/