Yearning for something different
There were 14,600 infocomm job vacancies in 2014 according to Infocomm Development Authority's (IDA) Infocomm Manpower Survey. DANELIA CHIM (firstname.lastname@example.org) speaks to two women who took up the information and communications technology challenge even though they had limited knowledge about the field.
Almost three years into her career, Miss Min Ong felt the need for a job change.
Over a chat with a friend about a website on animals they had done in primary school, she knew which industry she wanted to join.
So she quit her job and took up a course on web development with General Assembly (GA), supported under the IDA's TIPP initiative.
She now has a new job and has never been happier.
Miss Ong, 28, is one of 16 students who graduated from the pilot Web Development Immersive under the Tech Immersion and Placement programme by IDA in collaboration with a global education company, General Assembly (GA).
In 2009, Miss Ong had left Singapore to pursue a masters in management in France, where she stayed for three years.
She then joined a global pharmaceutical firm and worked in operations, specialising in supply chain management, which involved a lot of analytical work.
She yearned for something different.
She told The New Paper: "Over a year, I researched and thought about making a switch to the ICT (information and communications technology) industry.
NOW OR NEVER
"I even saved up money to attend a Web Development Immersive (programme) in New York that was about US$13,500 (S$18,300)."
But she did not quite have the courage to make that leap of faith.
One day, she and a friend recalled how they had got involved in self-coding a website about animals when they were just 10 years old. That conversation convinced Miss Ong it was now or never.
She returned to Singapore to visit her family and found out that WDI was offered locally.
After graduation, she had around four job offers, but Miss Ong picked Triplynr, a start-up company that created an app and website to make planning trips easier.
She said: "Triplynr stood out for me because I am able to relate to it since I love to travel.
"To be able to write the code then see it come to life as an app or webpage is amazing and satisfying."
Another student who graduated under TIPP is User Experience Design Immersive (UXDI) graduate, Miss Esther She, 33.
She has always been interested in anything ICT-related and would go online to learn about software such as Photoshop.
Her job as a corporate communications officerinvolves managing content on her company's website.
Her boss encouraged her to go for the UXDI course and that was where her talent for user experience design blossomed.
Miss She said: "I had been hesitant (about joining) at first, but I really enjoyed (UXDI). It was quite intense in terms of time spent, but it's definitely worth it."
Miss She was so outstanding that when she graduated from the programme, she took up GA's offer to be a teaching assistant for the second batch of students.
When she returns to her company, Miss She said that her job scope would expand to allow her to use her new skills.
Boosting ICT manpower
The Tech Immersion and Placement programme is a new initiative by the Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) to train non-ICT (information and communications technology) professionals to become industry-ready to make career switches to the ICT sector.
In collaboration with General Assembly, IDA has introduced and piloted two programmes: the User Experience Design Immersive (UXDI) and the Web Development Immersive (WDI).
This is to tackle the manpower shortage in the ICT industry.
UXDI focuses on creating designs to solve the current problems of digital products.
WDI equips its students with the basic skills to start their careers as web developers.
To apply, visit https://generalassemb.ly/