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Phoenix Forward

5 IT jobs that are hot right now

IT jobs are in demand

Despite the ho-hum speed of economic recovery in many sectors, the tech industry is booming. Mobile technology is proliferating at a rapid rate, as we see in the growing use of smartphones and tablets, which is a solid argument for arming oneself with an IT degree. Here are five tech careers that are heating up right now:

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App developer

With nearly 500,000 apps on the market for iPhone® and Android™ devices, Americans have become app-happy; so are the techies who are employed developing all the apps.

“This is a hot job skill,” says Blair Smith, dean of the University of Phoenix College of Information Systems and Technology. “The number of employers who had plans to hire for these positions was 61 percent, up from 44 percent in 2010, according to a recent survey in Computerworld.”

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Business intelligence analyst

“Today there are billions and billions of pieces of data being captured from consumers, a little bit each time they buy a product or visit a different page on a website,” Smith explains. A person who has the ability to make sense of this consumer data and who can design programs to analyze it will add real value to a company, he notes.

People with this type of expertise, known as business intelligence analysts, can help businesses become more profitable. In fact, 23 percent of employers plan to hire such analysts this year, up from 13 percent in the 2010.

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Project manager

It is a special person who can both understand technology and manage people, so good project managers are in high demand, Smith explains. In addition, it’s not enough to be a good manager of the people below you. “You need to be able to manage expectations coming from above as well,” Smith says.

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Social media community manager

There is an increasing need for public relations–minded people who have the Internet savvy to manage a company’s presence online and address problems as they arise. “A community manager is not someone who necessarily has to have a technical background,” Smith says. “That person has to be comfortable surfing social media and acting as a spokesperson.”

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Expert in cloud transformation and networking

In the old days, businesses kept their information on private mainframe computers or independent networks, but today’s companies are storing the technical operations and software that runs their businesses “in the cloud.”

People trained to design and implement the infrastructure of a company’s systems — people with networking systems expertise — can help a company move their technical operations to the cloud so employees can access documents through the Internet.

The need for network support specialists is projected to grow by more than 20 percent in the next eight years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“Networking is foundational to every aspect of your business, because in order to utilize apps, social media or business intelligence, you are dependent upon how everything is connected internally and externally,” Smith explains. “Networking ties it all together.”

iPhone is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.
Android is a trademark of Google Inc.

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