Categories: Expert Interviews

Expert Interview: Verena Lemberger of Academy Cube on Increasing Your Worth in IT

Verena Lemberger is business developer of the talent platform Academy Cube, which develops digital careers together with talents worldwide by offering easy access to courses and curricula that are linked to the jobs of the future. She also supports young people to develop their digital career.

We recently checked in with Verena to get her insight on what IT professionals need to know about increasing their value on the job and negotiating fair salaries. Here’s what she shared:

What are the current challenges to those interested in developing their digital careers today? Where do job seekers become frustrated?

Many talents are either missing business-related skills or they are well educated in this fields and are lacking IT skills. However, there is no need to fear digitalization. It’s simply the process of making our daily work easier and automated. Young people, the so called Generation Y, know technology from the beginning and are familiar with it.

First, I think for job seekers it’s frustrating when they are perceived as one common, “standardized” group. Everyone nowadays wants to work as an individual but most of the companies do not support this wish, based on older structures and practices. We always talk about making our world more digital, but the main challenge is to define the right structures for this. Job seekers are open minded and willing to learn the skills they are lacking. When they get employed and cannot fulfill their talent because of a misleading structure they get frustrated.

What IT skillsets are most in demand right now? What are employers looking for?

The combination of IT business processes and strategy-related skills are an ideal mix to work in digitalization. We support these skills and our main focus group is business students who are willing to get to know the area of digitalization. We also observe that there is a high demand for “techies” (like JAVA developers) who have strong soft skills in collaboration and an understanding for different viewpoints and interest groups.

How can job seekers ensure they’re qualified for these in-demand positions?

Every position is different. Some of our partners provide the opportunity to learn company-specific skills right before starting the job. Nevertheless, there is an onboarding phase necessary to get to know the specific culture, structure and needs of a company – even if someone has worked in a similar position in another company before. Therefore, we offer a wide range of courses to guarantee a mixture between highly demanded IT qualifications (for example SAP software know how) as well as courses for personal development which are also interesting in the phase of applications.

What tools should IT professionals be using today to determine what they’re worth? How does having a clearer picture of their value improve an IT professionals ability to negotiate a fair salary?

First of all, a professional needs to know his/her own value before starting to negotiate. Paysa is a great place to start and further research on the internet can give you a first impression about a realistic range you can go for. In addition, we usually have a network where we can ask for advice or information about industry specific salary or standards. Furthermore, it is important to ask yourself, what are my monthly expenses? What do I need to earn to cover my personal expenses like in rent, food, leisure? This amount should always be the minimum – but you should definitely start the negotiation with the demand for a higher salary to ensure that, in the end, you will at least get your minimum target. You also need to consider wage differences in different countries. The cost of living, the benefits and standards need to be researched before.

What advice can you offer IT professionals on negotiating a fair salary? What are the dos and don’ts of salary negotiations in this field?

Know your value and sell yourself. Inform yourself about the company and try to gather as much information as possible before going into negotiations.

What should IT professionals be doing today to improve their value to their potential employers? What types of training should they receive?

To increase the own value on the labor market, firstly, it is important to be able to work as generalist and to have specific skills which are important for the company. Also, certificates that are acknowledged worldwide increase one’s value – for example CISCO CCNA certification is a must in the area of network and security. SAP Terp10 is a must for SAP consultants and if you are working with social media the standard certificates from Google or Facebook might also be a good idea. But these are only the most-known offers. Most companies acknowledge  when you have completed any courses that show that you are willing to learn something and improve in specific fields.

What trends or headlines are you following in the world of IT recruiting today? Why do they interest you?

I am really interested in the development of standards. Standards in digitalization, in certification and in job roles and skill sets. I studied business and management with a specialization in supply chain management and logistics. In this area standards play an important role as well as the ability to getting better through collaboration. I am really looking forward to the future development here and hope that industries will work even closer together to become standardized and learn from each other.

Learn more about what you’re worth. Visit paysa.com.

Author: Paysa