What is IT? Looking to start a career in IT? Where to Start? Check out our presentation on different fields and roles in the ICT industry, along with resources to start learning new skills to improve your chances of getting employed.
Note: This presentation was originally prepared for our organisation, ChunriChoupaal's Work to Equality project for their informational evening themed: More Women in Technology. The main aim was to inform the participants about the job opportunities available in the IT sector and the skills required to get hired.
What is IT / ICT?
A quick introduction
Mine Ogura, ChunriChoupaal
The opinions expressed in this presentation are my own
and do not reﬂect those of my employer, eBay.
Why are we bringing this
to your attention?
There are many jobs in this
sector — well-paying ones. We
There are many online schools to get your foot in the
door. We are also coordinating Code to Change
SAVE THE DATE
E-skills Bootcamp & Conference Amsterdam
15 - 17 October 2015
Register your interest at firstname.lastname@example.org
What is IT & ICT?
What types of jobs are there
in these ﬁelds?
Information technology (IT) is the application of computers and
telecommunications equipment to store, retrieve, transmit and
manipulate data, often in the context of a business or other
Information and communications technology (ICT) is often
used as an extended synonym for information technology (IT),
but is a more speciﬁc term that stresses the role of uniﬁed
communications and the integration of telecommunications
(telephone lines and wireless signals), computers as well as
necessary enterprise software, middleware, storage, and
audio-visual systems, which enable users to access, store,
transmit, and manipulate information.
WIKIPEDIA SAYS IT and ICT are…
Let’s say you submit a bid on
Marktplaats or write a comment
on Facebook in the mobile app.
Your action goes to your mobile provider’s
The telecommunications systems translate and
relay that information to “The Internet”.
The data from the mobile device gives the
Internet instructions on what group of server
computers to go to. "
The image on the right is a typical group of
server computers in a data center. Facebook
has tens of thousands of these across the
When the server computers process your action, they
send back the changes to computer devices (e.g.,
the added comment in Facebook).
Each step is possible due to
IT / ICT technologies and
Let’s look at the IT / ICT
professions which allow
The people who design and build the computer devices
used, as well as any physical item used in IT/ICT, are
called HARDWARE ENGINEERS.
Their work has sped up machines signiﬁcantly over the
years. In fact, every 2.5 years, the speed of computers
double. This allows the internet products to do more.
The above are the guts of
a device. It includes silicon
chips and platinum
Telecommunications is the ﬁeld of engineering which deals with
data moving between devices over mobile cell lines as well as
the internet. It is a rapidly growing ﬁeld.
Network Engineering is the ﬁeld of
engineering which handles all of the
communications between devices.
Software Development & Maintenance
This is the ﬁeld your presenters
tonight specialise in. It will be
covered in detail later in this
Site Operations /
Site Operations / System Operations
Engineers manage all of the server
machines, their conﬁgurations, setup,
maintenance and our hardware. They
focus on the data centres and
Helpdesk, IT Support,
These IT workers make sure that the
machines in a company are working.
They make sure that software is up-
to-date, that we can connect to the
networks, and that we are up-to-date
on anti-virus software. It is an entry-
point into the IT ﬁeld.
Customer Service and Tech Support
help when customers have a
problem. This is an entry point into IT.
Ability to solve problems and speak
with customers is critical.
Customer Support &
Summary so far
• Hardware Engineers are electronics specialists who design and build the
devices and their components
• Telecom Engineers are specialised network engineers who specialise in
the telecommunications ﬁeld.
• Network Engineers build, manage and maintain hardware which allows
communication ﬂow between devices.
• Software Development and Maintenance will be covered shortly.
• Site Operations / System Administration manages the server computers,
their conﬁgurations, hardware and software.
• IT Support, Helpdesk and IT Technicians are IT staff in companies who
make sure that people’s devices (computers, laptops, mobiles, tablets
and wearables) are working.
• Customer Support and Tech Support are IT staff who answer questions
for people who have problems with a product.
So what does it take to develop
and maintain internet software?
We expect internet sites to work: be reliable, quick, secure, to be
improving all of the time, read our minds, and more. How hard can it be?
• Programmers / Developers: ability to code, think abstractly, tell a story with the software and
apps they are building, ability to focus on the user.
• Testers / QA: Understanding of technology and its intricacies, ability to ﬁnd things which are
not “right” and explain to others, customer focus, ability to code
• Data analysts / data scientists: ability to manipulate data and numbers to understand why
people do certain actions. A mathematical mind and love of analysis is required.
• User Experience Designer / UI Designer: creativity, visual acuity, understanding of how a
user would interact with the software or app.
• Product Managers and Product Owners: ability to translate fuzzy requests from many into
concrete requirements which can be coded by developers and tested by testers. Innate
understanding of the market, ability to talk to users and understand their needs, ability to talk
to abstract thinkers, clariﬁcation, and leadership are critical for this job.
• Project Managers: Understanding of the software development process, be pushy but not
bossy towards the delivery of software, and ability to work with third parties and deadlines.
Again, a reminder: there are online schools you can learn from to get your
foot in the door, and we’re offering the following eSkills conference!!