Demand in IT Industry


on vacation
Aug 7, 2001
I'm currently doing my general degree, bachelor of arts, in political science at a university which I only took because I wanted to learn something different and to pretty much say that I have a degree. However, I'm a computer a nerd and was always interested in networking and security. I want to take a short cert program for network security after I get my degree, but times' changing and would like to know what the demand is in this industry sector. What is the average pay? and how easy is it to get a job?

I'm interested specifically in forensics IT and network security.

Any information and help is appreciated. Thanks


Jun 12, 2004
i would say, even with your non i.t. related degree, you are probably going to be looking at starting at the bottom of the ladder... particularly when it comes to security/forensics as these are areas that require a very good understanding of most of the areas within i.t. which can only really be gained through years of experience.

also a cert imo is something that furnishes years of experiences. put it this way - would you employ a 22/23 year old fresh out of uni with no experience who had crammed on some books over a couple of months and somehow blagged an mcse to design your new multi million pound network for you? no, i didnt think so!

i dont mean to sound harsh, but if you think you can take a short cert program and then walk into a forensics/security job then i think you are sadly mistaken.

what skill/experience do you actually have other than being 'a geek' who is 'interested' in networking and security - if you tell us this we may be able to give a more accurate idea of where you should be pitching yourself.


[H]ardForum Junkie
Apr 5, 2000
As I just wrote in another thread, certifications or not, you'll be looking at bottom-rung work (even with a degree). The market is just flooded with qualified people, and in some cases overqualified. You'll just have to pay your dues and work your way up the chain over time. The benefit of the degree will come into play down the road when looking management comes looking for a team lead or project manager.

As for forensics (and to a certain extent) security in general, gernerally speaking its not gonna happen for someone new to the industry. It takes years of specialized training and work experience to get into these fields. Its sort of like the medical field where you can have run of the mill physicians and highly educated specialists in a given field.


Jul 18, 2006
When I got my degree and my certs for information technology and security it was really hard to get my foot into the door. My suggestion is too find a fourtune 500 company where you can easily move up in the ladder. Like me I had to do phone support for a year at 12.00/a hour and then moved to it department which pays 40,000 a year, get to know everyone. Also depending where you live too. I happen to live in Phoenix, there building a new google plant here and hiring over a 1000 employees, and there are other companies moving to the valley also. If you know someone in IT be there best friend, they might know someone that could be hiring in that feild. Like I said the hardest thing for me was trying to get experience, they dont care if you have a degree or certs, they want to know if you had real world experience.


[H]ardForum Junkie
Jul 19, 2004
I know it's not specifically in what you describe as your area of interest...but I'll tell you what "niche" in IT is absolutely demand, and SMB consulting.

SMB...Small Medium Business networks. Target = those with between 10 and 75 computers. IMO there's no better niche in the computer industry to get into than's begging for help, and very rewarding $$$.

Drive around town. Look around...focus on finding businesses..offices. See that store, that law firm, that dentist office, that florist, that non-profit org, that home healthcare agency, that yacht broker, that accouting firm, that store, that golf club/summer club, that metal casting company, that chamber of commerce, that doctors office, that nursing home, blah blah blah blah. They all have computers. Someone has to support them.

I say look for the ones above 10 computers..because go over 10..and you're most likely to find a server. Stay below 10..and it's probably just a simple peer to peer network..any 10 year old kid can support one of those. But get a server involved...and the demand for someone with a clue escalates..enter the SMB consultant. Microsoft Small Business Server at the core.

Microsofts 70-282 exam..bullseye

*Set your own hours. Who want's to report to a time clock every day, or sit in a cubicle for 8-9 hours. Why not work from home as you feel like it, some remote work from home..then hit the road late morning/ some onsites. Head home "when done"...instead of staring at the clock waiting for 5. Some weeks...only 20-30 hours..other weeks..close to 40 hours....yes some weeks you get crazy and do 50 hours or so..but overall..heh..towards the lighter side. Yes still darned good $.
* "stuck in a rut supporting the saaaaaaaaaame old boring stuff. Something new to figure out each day..that works for me.
*Did I mention you can make darned good money?
*Design/implement your own setups. You're the boss of the network for the small business. Nice huh?
*Oh yeah..the money isn't bad either.
*Meet lots of different people throughout each day.
*Doing larger scale projects that last a few weeks or a month or more..those are fun
*Work with all the various hardware..routers, servers, workstations, etc etc. Nice having a variety.

Just..overall...killer niche to fall into IMO. I would really have a hard time giving it up.


Sep 6, 2001
hehe, YeOldeStonecat, we have more in common than not. I think you've been at it a little longer than I have.

As you say, some weeks, 20 hours, some weeks are sick.

Waking up at 9am is always nice after working 'til 10 the night before.

The problem I have is I'm always on the clock, even now I'm researching parts for a job and working up a quote for two more.

Honestly, I don't think I've had a day off, even when I wasn't on site or even working on a PC in the office, in years. Even on my off days, I'm still crunching the numbers trying to figure something out.

As a word of advice, x-naga, work for someone for a bit, get a good feel for it. If you decide to go into business for yourself, give it a try first and try to work for a decent company for a bit. The work is the easy part, the business side sucks.