Each day telecommunications (telecoms) play a role in your life. From getting on the bus to work, being called by your boss who is wondering why you’re late, or relaxing at home with a movie on pay per view. Even reading this article involves the use of telecoms. I’m sure you grasp what it entails by now but just to be clear; the telecom field involves the transfer of data from one location to another. Cable, satellite, wireless phones, internet service, and more. The goal of these businesses is to ensure the transfer happens quickly, with no loss of data and without hiccups along the way.
Types of Professionals
If you take a moment to consider the range of this profession it becomes a bit daunting. First you have cable and satellite television, which includes 54.4 million subscribers across the United States as of the end of 2013 . Even with cable cutters growing in number year after year the job opportunities shouldn’t be going anywhere, because those people still use the internet, and telecoms supply that service as well. With as much as 8.2% of cable users disconnecting all television service , their viewing habits are taken up by the web, and so that service will have to grow in strength and reliability. Even if such a person exists that doesn’t use standard television or the internet, they probably at least carry a land line phone.
This current trend can be traced to just a few years back, and with constantly changing technology tomorrow could see an entirely new telecom platform growing in popularity and need. With such a low barrier of entry (most positions require little more than a high school diploma), the number of jobs, and the average salary in the U.S. for telecom professionals (just over $77,000 ) a shift or start in this ever changing career may be what’s right for you. You’ll need to have an urge to keep learning, but avenues for that growth are in place and may help you join the field as well.
There are certainly new things you’ll have to pick up before jumping into this new career, but you may not have to learn much. For instance, if you’ve ever thought to yourself, “If one more person asks me to fix their computer I might as well charge an IT fee,” then you are probably almost there. Knowledge in modern technology is obviously a must, and basic troubleshooting skills with networks and routers just means the additional info will come easily. Different positions would require much more technical education, but entry level jobs require very little.
As a network engineer you would find yourself talking mainly to yourself, and looking at vast arrays of circuitry. If delicate electronics isn’t your fancy this may not be the route for you. Doing repair, assessing problems and implanting new circuitry in areas that may not have been updated in a decade would be your daily life. Think about every time your high speed internet service slowed to 1990’s dial up. That problem generally falls in this job description; to analyze, repair and keep the problem at bay. then do it all over again when another issue comes up.
As a telecom software engineer you’d have to be pleasantly content with staring at screens and codes constantly. A software engineer in this industry sets the route for each packet of data. Which lines the data someone sends follows to ensure minimal loss of data, maximum speed, and without stopping or disappearing altogether. Much of the groundwork for these systems has been lain for years but with evolving technologies, both consumer and commercial, that framework changes. The code you write could lead to better, stronger and faster communication across the globe.
Other Telecom Careers
There are a plethora of other options in the telecom field as well; the typical sales and managerial force notwithstanding. Most of which are slight variations of the two briefly outlined in this article, and requiring much of the same experience. If this sounds like the choice for you, do a quick search online to see what jobs are open in your area. The requirements will list much of what I’ve already said, but it should also include the certifications the company requires. The certifications will be easily attained either via technical school in your area or on several websites, most notably the telecommunications certification organization.
Regardless which direction you choose, remember this one last piece of advice which can solve almost every technological problem. “Have you tried turning it off and on again?”