As businesses expand further into technology, relying on software and cloud-based services more, taking on tech courses isn’t only beneficial when it’s the sole focus of your career. These programs help professionals broaden their knowledge, stay abreast with market trends, on top of boosting their competencies.
In view of the world moving online at a pace faster than ever, it’s crucial that your CV doesn’t get left behind. Wondering if you should take up a course on data analytics or digital marketing? Smartcademy is a leading provider of tech education in Singapore, and we’ve put together this guide exploring the benefits of taking up tech courses, and the different types available in the market for working professionals.
Enrich your skill sets
A degree in tech is highly valued in many careers, especially those with a financial or creative focus. Employees who are equipped with skill sets in computer science or similar areas, are able to give themselves an added boost in their job performance instantly.
Earning potential increases
Tech skills are highly prized in modern businesses, allowing graduates to get a leg up on the competition with these transferable skills. Individuals who enter the workforce with these skills command higher starting salaries, even at entry-level. This is due to the growth of the digital economy and the increasing dominance of technology skills, making employees who have been through tech education more valuable than ever.
One of the biggest advantages of tech courses that focus on practical skills and employability, is that students get to meet like-minded classmates and make new connections. This creates the perfect opportunity to grow your professional network, which is an important part of finding employment in the professional sphere.
Staying relevant in the industry
To stay relevant and competitive, you should reskill yourself with the latest tools and technological knowledge to avoid being made redundant. Take retail stores for instance; An increasing number of retailers are complementing their brick-and-mortar outlets with e-commerce websites. Doing so allows them to reach online shoppers and multiply their revenue.
Increases eligibility for promotions
Upskilling yourself constantly is key to climbing the corporate ladder. That’s where technical skill development can play a vital role - taking the time to earn a new certification shows your company’s management that you take your career seriously, invest in yourself, and have the ambition to improve. These traits, along with the hard-earned skills and knowledge, will be helpful in building a case for earning a promotion.
Key tech courses you should consider
When exploring the idea of taking up tech courses, the smart thing to do is to consider which ones will be the most in-demand skills for the future. From data analytics, to digital marketing, below are some essential courses to give you a head start, whether it's some extra skills to level-up at your current role, or if it’s a career switch altogether.
Data analysis is essentially sorting through massive amounts of unstructured information and deriving key insights from it. Having been adopted in a range of different industries, you'll now find data analytics being used everywhere from aviation route planning, to predictive maintenance analysis in manufacturing plants. Even industries such as retail that you might not associate with big data are now getting on board, utilising analytics to improve customer loyalty and tailor their unique offerings.
With such a boom in the use of analytics, having the relevant skills required to work with data isn't just valuable, but a necessity. The importance of these skills is only going to become more prevalent in the future as industries and businesses increasingly jump onto the bandwagon, which is why we're now seeing such a focus on data analytics courses, alongside an exploding demand for data professionals.
Intro to Digital Marketing
Recent innovations in technology and its adaptation by businesses have changed the way we communicate and receive information.Setting up a business online, running ad campaigns, developing content strategies are a few of the tasks a trained digital marketing professional is needed to achieve. As most companies and businesses understand the importance of digitising their operations, there is a growing need for advanced experts in the digital marketing field to promote their services. This is where digital marketing comes into the picture to help organisations reach a wider audience, scale their business further, and generate more revenue.
UX (User Experience) design is focused on solving problems for users in the product design process. It often involves analytical thinking, researching user personas and goals, user journey mapping, on top of designing the interface itself.
When done well, UX design provides positive experiences that keep users engaged with a website, which in turn makes them more likely to become customers. UX is more than just about appealing visuals - it creates a customer journey which encourages users to explore a product or click through web pages to perform a desired outcome.
As information is the key in any business, the speed and accuracy of transmitting information from one source to another matters, and blockchain is the ideal solution for it. Data provided is immediate, shared, and transparent. Once it has been stored, it cannot be tampered with. In addition, access to these ledgers can also be restricted to certain network members only.
From its decentralised network to its streamlined processes, blockchain is immensely secure, traceable and reliable. If you’re considering your next career move, planning to advance into a senior role or wondering how to be a step ahead of industry changes, specialising in blockchain is the way to do so.
Design Thinking is a problem-solving approach that enacts innovation centred on the customer’s needs. It is both user-centric and solutions-based, which sets it apart from other problem-solving frameworks. =. Leveraging these skills at work can help shift your mindset, lead teams toward innovation, and create products with tangible value that increases revenue.
Advanced Digital Marketing Course
An advanced digital marketing course will equip you with everything you need to succeed in the corporate world of marketing and advertising. Delivering a breadth and depth of understanding the subject, studying advanced digital marketing provides the learner with the digital and research skills to work at a management or strategic level. You will be able to develop and execute a solid digital marketing strategy, and vital skills that all marketers, professionals and business leaders need to work effectively, productively and professionally in a collaborative business environment.
How to choose the right course for your development
Studying for an extra qualification can open up new opportunities if you’re keen in advancing your career. But for many, having to make such a decision can be overwhelming, and the struggle of navigating the various possibilities can sometimes lead to frustration and indecision. Given that enrolling in professional courses involves a hefty investment in time and money, it is only logical to make it count by choosing the right programme to help you achieve your career goals. Here are some tips to keep in mind to increase your chances of professional success.
Shortlist and cross out options
The first step in selecting a professional course for your tech education is deciding on a topic of interest. This decision is critical because you will be investing time and money in the learning process. The idea is to conduct research on the courses available and pick those that may be more aligned to your interests, on top of selecting a topic that has market value and is recognised by organisations. According to a SkillsFuture Singapore 2021 report, popular fields include business sustainability and digital transformation skills such as AI, cyber security, and data analytics.
After you have decided which industry you want to build your career in, it is time to shortlist the primary subjects. Create a list of all the shortlisted areas you plan to opt for and start crossing the ones you don’t want to pursue. Doing so will provide a more streamlined process and allow you to feel more assured in your decision.
Does the course fit with your schedule?
Most people who have considered taking professional courses can attest to the fact that scheduling difficulties are one of their main hindrances. When attending professional courses, you should ensure your work schedule and personal obligations allow enough time for the level of commitment required. We advise getting clear on the start date of the course, the duration, and the days of the week the class runs.
For instance, if you don’t want to cut back on your work hours, an online course that you can schedule around work may be the best fit. Whichever course you choose, the one that’s delivered in a way that works for you will give the best chance to get ahead professionally, and set you up for success.
Look for a career adviser
Once you have shortlisted your choices, the next step would be to turn to various career resources for more guided help. A career coach is trained to help clients learn more about what kinds of work would best suit them. That said, career coaches are an additional expense, therefore it is crucial to research their credentials, experience, and background to ensure they will be a good fit for your needs.
Alternatively, you may contact the school to secure professional guidance from education advisors about your desired programme. Make sure that you have all the necessary information in place before making a decision, such as course details, application procedure, deadlines, course recognition, career opportunities, and progression pathway.
Seek advice from those around you
While working on your choice of what to study, never hesitate to ask for advice. In fact, we recommend you speak to your manager and people in your professional network about the career pathways that are open to you. Anyone who is already working in a similar role is a great source for real-world insights into the industry, and will be able to advise on which courses are highly regarded, and which ones truly teach you the skills for the job.
Benefits of online learning
With the rise of digital in many areas of our lives, we are now also seeing an increase in the use of digital services in learning. The nature of learning has been through many changes in the last few years. New technology is used to improve learning both in terms of engagement, and the effectiveness of teaching, with the aim of ultimately ensuring better results for students. If a brick and mortar educational setting makes learning difficult for you due to job or family responsibilities, an online learning environment could provide the education you are looking for, with the added flexibility you need to work it into your daily routine. This section takes a look at how online learning could just be the solution to obtaining your educational goals!
Many individuals turn to online learning for the greater flexibility to juggle a career, education, and personal life without the confines of a fixed schedule. Being able to learn virtually from anywhere allows you to pursue coursework without having to commute to a physical campus. While some online courses still require learners to attend live lectures, you can otherwise factor your coursework into an already busy schedule.
Progress at your own pace
With online learning, you are allowed to set your own pace, which can provide a better chance of adequately absorbing and retaining the information in your coursework. Unlike traditional classes which require taking notes feverishly during lectures such that you can review the material later, online learning allows you to review the course materials as often as you like, and at a time when you are most focused. Discussions and lectures will be in the form of video and podcasts that can be watched, paused, and reviewed as needed so that you can be sure you are following along.
Personalised learning experience
Professional development can come in many formats, spread across a varied range of industries, subjects, and areas of interest. Learning remotely gives you the freedom of choosing a program that can best suit your educational goals. Different institutions will specialise in certain fields, allowing one to find the best opportunities by selecting an institution that not only meets your needs from a learning standpoint, but also provides the most suitable courses to further your educational goals.
Develops time management skills
Managing your time is an important skill in all areas of life. As a professional in an online course, you’re likely balancing your job with your education, along with personal obligations and everything life throws your way. This requires you to learn how to plan ahead and break your assignments into smaller chunks throughout the day. Knowing how to manage your time during the period of a professional course is a skill that will serve you well in the long term.
Questions you may have
We conclude this guide with some questions you might have with regards to taking up professional tech courses as a working professional.
Do I need relevant tech background to join the Smartcademy courses?
Most of our courses do not have any prerequisites and are suitable for beginners without prior background knowledge. Courses that require prior background knowledge will be listed on the course page.
What is the funding support available?
The IBF Standards Training Scheme (“IBF-STS”) provides funding for training and assessment programmes accredited under the Skills Framework for Financial Services.
For our training programmes that are accredited under the IBF Standards, eligible Singaporeans & PRs can apply for funding support under the IBF Standards Training Scheme (IBF-STS), subjected to all eligibility criteria being met.
For training programmes commencing between 1 Jul 2022 – 31 Dec 2022 (both dates inclusive):
- Singaporeans (below 40 years old) and PR (regardless of age) will be eligible for 70% funding of direct training cost.
- Singapore Citizens aged 40 years old and above will be eligible for 90% co-funding of direct training costs.
- Kindly note that from 3 Oct 2022, GST funding support will no longer be applicable for all courses.
- Funding of training courses under the Critical Core skills and Future-Enabled skills categories will only be available to locals (Singapore Citizens or Singapore Permanent Residents) employed in the financial sector (i.e. by financial institutions or SFA certified FinTech firms)
For more information on the funding support, please visit: https://www.ibf.org.sg/programmes/Pages/IBF-STS.aspx
Can I use my SkillsFuture Credits?
For Singaporeans age 25 years old and above, you may use your SkillsFuture Credits to pay for the remaining course fees. A step-by-step guide will be emailed to you to guide you with the claim application.
How do I sign up?
Our registration process is simple! Simply click on ‘Apply Now’ and fill up the form with your relevant information. Afterwhich, submit and pay the deposit of $100 to secure your slot. You will then receive an email confirmation regarding your application.
All in all, developing your skills with tech education comes with numerous benefits. However, the key lies in deciding on the best course for you to most effectively accelerate your career advancement.
From Data Analytics to Digital Marketing, Smartcademy has a comprehensive range of tech courses for every area of interest. If you’re looking to sharpen your skill set, reach out to us with your enquiries and we’ll be more than ready to assist you.