Explore Job Types
For young adults going into business or technology, choosing a specialization from dozens of different roles can be overwhelming. Start with an understanding of what each function entails and then figure out where your personal strengths and interests might be a good fit.
While you might think of business and technology as analytically-heavy career paths, there is a surprisingly wide range of job functions within the two, which span both quantitative and creative disciplines.
Common Business Functions
Finance & Accounting
While accounting focuses on controlling costs and the books, finance can cover things like estimating project profitability.
Without sales, there is no business. Sales associates meet with prospective clients to bring in new business and qualify new leads.
Marketing & Content
Marketers segment their customer base and promote the product through digital means, like email, social media and apps.
It is operations' job to build and maintain business processes, which today frequently involves information systems.
This role performs competitive analysis and uses insights on customers, financials and products to support strategic decisions.
Common Technology Functions
Software engineers include architects that design information systems to application developers that write code for the software.
Since software is project-oriented in nature, a PM's job is to ensure that new functionality is built, tested and deployed on schedule.
The "quarterback" of an app, POs oversee everything from its roadmap to the requirements in a new release.
Data & Analytics
The new language of business is data. Being vital to business decisions, "BI" has spawned into many new data roles.
UX and UI Design
UX has become important in software, with an emphasis on user needs and delivering rich digital experiences.
Types of Positions
Full-Time Employee (FTE)
Full-time positions are employed by the company itself, without a defined end date to the employment agreement.
As a contractor, you are paid hourly for your services to a client. While you'll make more than an FTE, there is much less job security.
Consultants are also temporary help to a company but tend to focus on project work rather than ongoing staff augmentation.
What's Right for YOU
College graduates often choose a career path that their parents want for them, or one they believe will make them lots of money, and then burn out before 30 due to its poor fit with their personality
and true interests. Though pivots
in career path happen all the
time, you should be honest
with what you know about
yourself before deciding
on an initial path.
The Personal Attributes at Play
What are you naturally good at? Qualities like persuading anyone, or writing catchy copy in seconds, can make your job easier.
Your sources of excitement should be reflected in your job. It may be a product launch or making a customer's day.
Some organizations are socially and community-focused while others are great at promoting a healthy work-life balance.
How Personality is Reflected in a Job
If your function doesn't leverage parts of your natural self, you may end up burning lots of energy just to "keep up" with the job.
Being around people with similar values and in a comfortable working environment can make it easier to focus on, and enjoy, work.
Some people, like management consultants, prefer a change of scenery while others need consistency to excel at their job.