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Making Career Switch to Tech Gainful in Gaming Industry

Iyke Bede writes that the considerable growth potential in the tech sector in Nigeria presents opportunities for individuals with prospects to work in the tech space, as well as attracting many more professionals from other backgrounds seeking to switch career paths, even in the gaming industry

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Nigerian tech space, mirroring the global growth trajectory, has continued to expand, encouraging people with relevant skill sets to transition to pursue new careers and solve existing problems using diverse approaches.

The multifarious tech environment encompasses many niches, including software development, cyber security, artificial intelligence and machine learning, cloud computing, and UI and UX designs, which are crucial to its overall functioning to meet users’ needs.

Nigeria exhibits considerable growth potential in the tech sector when contrasted with leading nations such as China and the United States, which have experienced rapid growth over the years.

This growth will primarily be attributed to its historically lower adoption of tech products. The gap created by this slow adoption presents opportunities for individuals with prospects to work in the tech space and attracts many more professionals from other backgrounds seeking to switch career paths. While many have successfully transitioned to tech or discovered ways to incorporate it into their career, many more are clueless about the steps to take.

Convening at the maiden The Omniverse Africa Summit held at Landmark Event Centre, Lagos, techpreneurs and tech experts engaged in a fireside chat tagged ‘High Tech —Career Trajectories and Opportunities in Software Development’ to dismantle barriers to entry into the dynamic tech sector.

The panellists —co-founder of Semicolon, Ashley Immanuel; co-founder of Blusalt, Adetokunbo Iginla; Ecosystem and Partnerships Director, Wamide Animashaun; and founder of Testify Limited, Ibironke Yekinni — briefly spoke about the various opportunities available in each software development niche. They also told the attendees how they entered the space and kick-started their careers. In their discussions, they highlighted the various aspects that must be considered to ensure a seamless transition, including entry via certifications, learning and drive for solutions.

Entry via certifications

To grasp the basic concepts of the tech ecosystem, Iginla advised that those amid a career switch must ensure they undergo training to acquire relevant skills. He noted the abundance of information available online and numerous platforms through which certifications can be attained. He believes that training to earn a certification would help properly align the future goals of such individuals.

Interest in learning

Having followed the trend of transitioning might not have been beneficial in the long term, especially if perceived pecuniary benefits influenced such decisions. Once expectations are not met, the learning is greatly impacted. Animashaun strongly advised interested individuals to ensure their footing in the tech space.

“If you need to transition, the first thing is always to start with what you really want to do. Identify strengths and opportunities to match skills with. Start from the basics,” Animashaun said.

A drive to find solutions

Every software addresses distinct real-life challenges. The panel highlighted that exploring how applications can tackle additional issues can pave the way to a rewarding career.

“We have to understand the solutions that these techs are trying to solve. A solution Like Blockchain is trying to solve the problem of decentralisation. Today, we know that there is something fundamentally wrong with value, and these kinds of tech are trying to solve them,” Iginla noted.

Meeting consumers’ demands

Fulfilling roles as a project manager, developer, Scrum master, and product manager significantly contributed to Yekinni’s career as a software tester. She attributes her years of experience in these diverse fields as instrumental in understanding and effectively addressing customer needs. This proficiency has greatly propelled her, earning the confidence of her clients. She emphasises the importance of attention to detail and highlights its key role in career growth.

“For an application to function properly, it has to be tested. A lot of problems you run into when using financial apps are because they are not well-tested. Software testers validate the quality of apps, ensuring that they meet the requirements.”

Curiosity sparks creativity

Immanuel, addressing the learning engagement of trainees and interns, emphasised that while pursuing training for career advancement is a commendable endeavour, one must approach it with curiosity.

She said, “The truth is, in the future of work, the skills that are going to be required are lifelong learning and creativity.”

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