Whether you're a creative type or a techie, or a blend of both, ICT qualifications could send you around the world while working from home, or in a global corporation or your own innovative start-up. Well known Computer Science graduates include: Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), Elon Musk (Tesla) and Larry Page (Google).
New ICT areas are emerging all the time, often blending together two disciplines or focusing on a particular speciality. If your passion and interest is technology, in the areas of information or communications, the ICT profession offers you a rewarding future.
More about ICT professionals. What do they do?
Right now, ICT professionals work in these broad areas.
There are many different roles and specialisations in each:
Hint: For an alphabetical listing of all ICT roles go to glossary-ict.
Computer Network Professionals research, analyse and recommend strategies for network architecture and development, implement, manage, maintain and configure network hardware and software, and monitor and optimise performance, and troubleshoot and provide user support. Roles in this area include:
-Computer Network / Systems Engineer
Database / Systems / ICT Security
Database & Systems Administrators and ICT Security Professionals usually work for large organisations. They plan, develop, maintain, manage and administer database management systems, operating systems and security policies and procedures to ensure optimal database and system integrity, security, backup, reliability and performance. Roles in this area include:
-ICT Security Specialist
Business and Systems
ICT Business and Systems Analysts work with users to formulate system requirements, develop system plans and documentation, review and evaluate existing systems, and design and modify systems to meet users' business needs. Roles in this area include:
-ICT Business Analyst
Multimedia and Web
Multimedia Specialists and Web Developers create computer animation, audio, video and graphic image files for multimedia presentations, games, motion pictures, CD-ROMs, information kiosks and the web, and plan, produce and maintain web sites and web applications using web programming, scripting, authoring, content management and file transfer software. Roles in this area include:
Software and Applications
Software and Applications Programmers design, develop, test, maintain and document program code in accordance with user requirements, and system and technical specifications. Roles in this area include:
-Software and Applications Programmers
Support and Testing
ICT Support and Test Engineers develop procedures and strategies to support, create, maintain and manage technical quality assurance processes and guidelines and systems infrastructure, investigate, analyse and resolve system problems and performance issues, and test the behaviour, functionality and integrity of systems. Roles in this area include:
-ICT Quality Assurance Engineer
-ICT Support Engineer
-ICT Systems Test Engineer
-ICT Support and Test Engineers
Telecommunications Engineering Professionals design, construct, install, service and support telecommunications equipment, systems and facilities. Roles in this area include:
-Telecommunications Network Engineer
Computer Scientist, Researcher, Academic
Computer Scientists develop new technologies, systems and computer-based solutions. They often work as part of a research team with computer programmers, information technology professionals, and mechanical or electrical engineers. They may also work as academics, lecturers or educators in their areas of specialisation.
Management & Consultancy
Management and Consultancy roles exist in every specialist area of ICT, for experienced practitioners. -ICT Sales and Marketing
-Chief Information Officer
How much can I earn?
The lifetime earnings/ wage gap, between people who graduate from university and those who don't, is significant. Different research measures estimate the higher lifetime earnings by graduates at anywhere from 30% to 75% greater than school leavers1.
Average weekly earnings before tax (2015 data) for ICT professions range from $1,610 (ICT Security Professional) to $1,856 (Web Developer)2. Check out the ICT profession snapshot infographic below, for earnings data in other areas of ICT.
Computer Science university graduates (Bachelor, newly qualified, under 25) can start on annual incomes ranging from $53k to $59k3. Post-graduate study, internships, professional accreditation and experience open up a wide range of careers in related professional roles, offering significantly higher earnings.
Experienced ICT professionals can expect annual earnings of up to $96k. For example in 2015, Database Administrators, ICT Security professionals, and Application & Software Developers averaged over $83k annually; Business and Systems Analysts averaged over $95k and Mulitmedia/ Web Develoment professionals averaged over $96k4.
1 ABC News Fact Check - see http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-05-29/pyne- graduate-earnings-and-unemployment-claim-overblown/5446462
2 ABS Characteristics of Employment Survey.
3 Graduate careers Australia - www.graduatecareers.com.au - Graduate Salaries Report 2015.
4 2015 earnings data - Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, DET trend data to November 2015).
Digital Careers Australia is a website that aims to raise awareness of the different ICT careers and resources that are available to students. It also provides useful links to other websites. (Australian Government funded initiative)
Careers with Code is the digital version of the free magazine that focusses on careers in Computer Science (CS). It has great stories about the many and varied areas that you can work within ICT and other industries.
Youth Central is the Victorian Government's website for young people aged 12-25, filled to overflowing with great information and articles on things like how to find a job, study options and career profiles.
LEAP Partner Universities - from here, you can follow links to our partner universities' LEAP landing pages, for direct access to info about each university, their courses, scholarships, student support services, pathways options and other useful information.
Students - Beyond School has lots relevant information about the world of work, work experience, career planning, pathways and development, and occupations for secondary school students. (Victorian Government site)
Study Assist helps school students and their families understand what support they are eligible for if pursuing higher education, based on a range of study options available to them. (Australian Government site)
My Future has a guide to career development, to education beyond Year 12, videos by professionals and interactive career quizzes. My Future also has a new myfuture forum, a tool allowing you to talk to people working in a range of industries. (Australian Government site)
Bullseye posters - School subjects you like and jobs they can lead to. (Australian Government site)
Job Outlook is a careers and labour market research information site to help individuals decide on their future career. (Australian Government site)
My Skills - Online information about vocational education and training options. (Australian Government site)
Good Universities Guide - Online careers guide.
Start building your skills now
If you think a career in ICT is for you, why not start planning how to get there? Go to Building skills to see what you can do right now. Then remember to review your Career Action Plan with your teacher or careers teacher.