With their problem-solving skills, as well as their focus on decision-making and taking the initiative, quite a lot of veterans find they fit well in the tech sector.
It helps that network administration and related duties are jobs in the military, and many service members are accustomed to basically learning the ropes during their military careers.
For veterans looking to transition into the tech sector, consider the following jobs that the digital magazine InformationWeek listed in their "10 Best Tech Jobs" article. Most of these jobs will require additional training and education, but are a logical career progression for those of you well-versed in computers or simply working hard to achieve your aspirations.
If you are still trying to figure out your career plan, consider this list while you take classes and pursue your education. If you are past that phase, get that resume ready and land yourself one of these top jobs.
1. Data scientists make a median base salary of $116,840 and came in at No. 9 on Glassdoor's 25 Best Jobs in America. With 1,736 job openings at the time of the article, the demand is fairly high. The article lists Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor's chief economist, as saying, "Since all companies have an online presence these days, they need people who know how to manage and store data that helps them make better business decisions." Like many of the following jobs, veterans can learn this job but will likely require additional education.
2. Solutions architects make a median base salary of $199,500 and are described as "a problem solver, and has a mix of both business and technical skills. Solutions architects often work closely with clients to hear feedback on their company's product, and then provide any solutions needed based on the feedback." Once again, you'll likely require more education before being eligible for the title of solutions architect title, but based on that description, many veterans would do well here.
3. Mobile developers make a median base salary of $90,000 and are in high demand, since companies across all industries could benefit from mobile apps as part of their business plan. That said, there aren't likely many jobs in the military that directly translate into developing apps.
4. Project managers make a median base salary of $106,680 and are probably the most natural transition point for most service members. The job can be quite different depending on the industry, but the foundational skills required are quite similar to what many of us learn in the military.
5. Software engineers make a median base salary of $95,000 and, with 49,270 job openings in 2015, is apparently in high demand. Companies are in need of software engineers to, in addition to other projects, build up their online presence and have a need for software engineers. If you can apply for this job as a veteran with the required skills, you have an advantage.
6. Analytics managers make a median base salary of $105,000 and are in charge of analyzing data and making conclusions about it. The job only had 982 openings in 2015, so you may have a harder time finding openings.
7. Software development managers make a median base salary of $135,000, which is "one of the highest paying positions among the top 25 best jobs in America." As this is a managerial position, be sure to beef up your leadership skills on the resume when it becomes time to apply. This is also a job that requires higher education and technical skills, so it may be a job for further down the road.
8. Quality assurance managers make a median base salary of $85,000. They may be in charge of monitoring software testing processes or testing new products, and they may be a good starting point if you can meet the job description requirements.
9. User experience (UX) designers make a median base salary of $91,800 and will continue to be in high demand as companies build their online presence. This is certainly a job that requires additional education, but one that allows more creativity than the others.
10. Software architects make a median base salary of $130,000, but there were fewer job openings last year than in some of these other jobs. This job is more senior and technical, so it might be one you list as further along in your career plan.
There are plenty of other career routes in the tech field, such as network administrators and information security, jobs that most tech veterans probably go for. I also know a few Marines who went on to become official hackers, but they worked the system to ensure the military sent them to special "Red Team" schools as their enticement for reenlistment.
Wherever you see your path taking you, there's no time like the present to start preparing, even if it is a complete career change. Revise that resume, build up your network and do everything you can to pursue your tech dream.
Want to Know More About the Military?
Be sure to get the latest news about the U.S. military, as well as critical info about how to join and all the benefits of service. Subscribe to Military.com and receive customized updates delivered straight to your inbox.