It's no secret that the pandemic massively disrupted many sectors of Canada's economy.
It dramatically changed the way many people work, shop, socialize (and pretty much every other aspect of our lives).
But while some industries have suffered large job losses, sectors like information technology experienced substantial growth.
With everyone stuck at home, relying on digital systems to keep them connected to the outside world, the demand for computer networking professionals has kicked into high gear.
In this post, we walk you through 4 computer networking jobs that have seen increased demand during the pandemic.
Find out which IT careers offer promising opportunities both now and in the years ahead.
1. IT SUPPORT SPECIALIST
Also known as help desk technicians, IT support specialists come to the rescue when staff members or clients have problems with their computer systems.
These professionals troubleshoot all kinds of different issues, from a slow Internet connection or lost Wi-Fi signal to a forgotten password or unresponsive printer.
Their job is to help end users overcome their technical challenges and maintain their productivity.
☑️ Typical tasks for IT Support Specialists:
- Responding to phone or email requests for assistance
- Listening to users' descriptions of the issue and asking questions to diagnose the cause
- Walking users through the steps required to fix the problem
- Keeping detailed records of issues and solutions
☑️ Demand: Covid-19 has forced many people to work from home. This has spiked huge demand for IT support specialists who can help remote users get set up and deal with technical issues.
☑️ Salary: According to the Government of Canada Job Bank, user support technicians in Manitoba earn a median salary of about $59,000. The top-earning technicians make more than $100,000.
2. NETWORK SECURITY ANALYST
Network security analysts are in charge of planning and implementing measures to safeguard data and computer networks.
They look for weaknesses in IT systems that hackers could exploit and take proactive steps to correct those issues.
That involves investigating suspicious network activity, reporting hacks or breaches, and developing plans to prevent future attacks.
☑️ Typical tasks for network security analysts:
- Monitoring network traffic and activity
- Installing and updating firewalls and other security controls
- Creating and testing disaster recovery plans
- Staying on top of emerging cyber threats
☑️ Demand: Data security has become increasingly critical during the pandemic, with many more people using computer networks to work, shop, bank, and even consult with their doctor.
Demand in this field is so strong that the Canadian government is investing $80 million in a new program aimed at developing cybersecurity talent.
☑️ Salary: PayScale says the median network security analyst salary in Canada is about $70,000. The highest-earning analysts make upwards of $102,000.
3. NETWORK TECHNICIAN
Network technicians are responsible for ensuring all the components of a computer network function as smoothly and efficiently as possible.
They install, improve, and repair things like servers, cables, routers, switches, firewalls, printers, and workstations.
Network technicians also ensure that remote employees have access to virtual private networks (VPNs), videoconferencing tools, and cloud storage systems.
Ultimately, a tech's role is to build and support the network infrastructure that nearly all businesses depend on.
☑️ Typical tasks for network technicians:
- Setting up and configuring network hardware, software, and related equipment
- Performing data backups and security updates
- Troubleshooting and resolving network problems
- Optimizing network performance
☑️ Demand: The shift to cloud-based services was well underway before the pandemic hit, but that shift has greatly accelerated as more people work from home.
Companies need network technicians who can support remote users and configure and manage cloud services.
The Job Bank forecasts that network technicians in Manitoba will continue to be in high demand as many businesses stick with a remote workforce even post-COVID.
☑️ Salary: Job Bank data shows that the median salary for computer network technicians in Manitoba is around $62,000. The top network techs make more than $97,000.
IT PROJECT MANAGER
IT project managers plan, organize, and coordinate an organization's efforts to meet a specific technology goal.
Their job is to deliver technological solutions on time and on budget.
These managers can oversee projects relating to cloud migration, network upgrades, software implementation, and more.
☑️ Typical tasks for IT project managers:
- Managing budgets
- Setting timelines and allocating resources
- Coordinating workflows
- Tracking progress and communicating with stakeholders
☑️ Demand: The pandemic-inspired push to adopt cloud technologies and redesign technical infrastructure is expanding opportunities for IT project managers.
In fact, these professionals consistently rank among the most in-demand IT jobs in Canada.
☑️ Salary: According to PayScale, the median salary for IT project managers in Canada is about $83,000. At the top end, salaries can be as much as $112,000.
START your career WITH COMPUTER NETWORKING TRAINING AT HERZING
Looking for a computer networking course that can prepare you to take advantage of growing job opportunities?
Check out the Computer Networking Technology program at Herzing College Winnipeg.
It takes just 12 months to complete and includes a 7-week internship at a local company.
Students receive hands-on training in network administration, security, optimization, troubleshooting, and technical support.
Graduates are qualified for a wide range of in-demand roles.
Wondering if the computer networking program is right for you?
An Admissions Advisor can answer your questions and help you figure out if the program is a good fit for your needs and goals.
Click below to explore the program and chat live with an Advisor. We're here to help!