Career Insight

Benefits of a Tech Career During an Economic Downturn

economic downturn

By Samuel Cook

We’re not going to sugar coat it: these are anxious times for many of America’s workers. Stock markets dropped over 30% in March 2020, while the number of Americans filing for unemployment also broke records.

But (and we’re still not sugar coating here) it’s not all doom and gloom. There are silver linings to be found, especially if you want to use this time to hang out with loved ones (at a distance, of course), pick up a new hobby, or secure your financial future.

Speaking of securing the bag, there’s no better time to consider a career in tech. Not only do many tech jobs boast high salaries and desirable benefits, but many are also sheltered from economic shocks like the one we’re currently experiencing. Here’s why you should consider starting your tech career now.

Most tech jobs are relatively future-proof

Many jobs require a physical presence, making it impossible to perform work at a distance. But for much of the tech industry, the transition to working from home has been almost seamless.

Most tech jobs, especially those in Software Engineering and UX Design, can now be done from almost anywhere. Prior to the massive economic shutdown, many of these jobs were already being performed by individuals working remotely.

A 2019 Stack Overflow survey also found over 31% of programmers prefer to work for companies that allow for remote work. And a 2019 DigitalOcean survey found over 80% of developers were already working remotely in some fashion.

Additionally, tech jobs usually require some kind of specialization or specific skill set. This means in the right tech role, you’re more likely to have better job security and transferrable skills unlike in a lot of other jobs. If you continue to train yourself and practice new skills, even just for 15 minutes a day, you could become what we like to think of as a ‘future-proof’ professional.

As long as you have a reliable Internet connection and a decent laptop or desktop computer, you can perform all of the coding and programming tasks many tech industry jobs now require.

Additionally, collaboration with remote teams is also easy thanks to numerous technologies which have already been in wide use prior to the current economic downturn brought on by the coronavirus pandemic—which leads to our next point.

Collaboration in a tech job is easy and flexible

There are a ton of digital collaboration tools to help you streamline the teleworking process in this industry. Zoom is hotter than the sun right now, but it’s not the only remote communication tool tech workers can use to communicate at a distance. There’s also Slack, Trello, Google Drive, and DropBox (and we’re not even diving into the add-ons and bonus features these platforms also provide).

Software Engineers also rely heavily on web-based tools to make collaborating on code easier. Services like Teletype for Atom, Coda, and GitHub easily work as backbones for the work-from-home tech industry. They’re also a nice replacement for having someone stand over your shoulder while you code… maybe this is viewed as a perk as a result of personal past experiences though.

Either way, many programmers were already using these tools together in an office setting, and thanks to them, the transition to working from home resulted in very little change in pace. This is good news because, at the end of the day, little to no business interruption usually means more job stability.

Software Engineers and UX Designers make bank

Not only are tech jobs traditionally better protected against economic downturns, but they also have a nice reputation for paying higher salaries.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median pay for software developers in 2018 was over $105,000 per year. That’s more than twice the median personal income in the US (which is just over $51,000 per year).

Many different tech industry jobs fall under the “Software Developer” umbrella. The category includes Software Engineers of all stripes and UX Designers. With the right education, there are numerous roles you can fill and grow in. Job growth in this industry is also strong. The BLS projects the industry to add over 284,000 jobs by 2028.

And as anyone could tell you, earning more money is not only beneficial during an economic downturn, but it can also make it much easier to live comfortably and secure your finances for the future. With the higher salary from a programming or UX Design job, you can put more money into your emergency savings and more peace into your mind.

You can learn Software Engineering or UX Design at home

You could spend your free time during an economic downturn watching reruns of “The Office” (honestly, no shame), but you could also make this time work for you by starting your transition to the tech industry. It’s easier than ever to get started on a career path into Software Engineering or UX Design with a variety of online programs, of course, we’d love to have you join us at Kenzie Academy.

With Kenzie’s online curriculum, you can become a certified Software or UX Engineer in just 12 months without breaking the bank thanks to some accessible financing options.

These uncertain economic times will get better, but the structure and nature of work are rapidly changing. Tech industry jobs you can learn from home not only offer a better salary and more job flexibility but are also a great way to future-proof your career on the other side of this pandemic.

Ready to jumpstart your career as a UX Designer or Coder? Learn more about our 12-month Software Engineering and UX design programs, or check out our free beginner’s coding program Kenzie Free.

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