Information technology/software trainers: job description

IT and software trainers teach desktop applications and software to a range of clients, from business people to the unemployed.

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What do IT and software trainers do? Typical employers | Qualifications and training | Key skills

Responsibilities of the job vary according to the type of employer and how it makes use of IT. However, typical duties include:

  • assessing individual/group training needs
  • planning, preparing and researching lessons
  • teaching IT staff to use various computer languages and specialist applications
  • teaching general staff to use desktop programmes such as Microsoft Office and other office software
  • organising and promoting courses
  • developing and delivering programmes of learning activities
  • preparing teaching materials
  • spending contact time with students on an individual or group basis
  • invigilating examinations
  • checking and assessing students' work and giving feedback
  • liaising with other organisations and employers
  • making use of new technology such as distance learning or video conferencing
  • keeping IT skills and knowledge up to date.

You may have to travel as part of the work, especially when employed by a specialist training provider or international organisation.

Typical employers of IT and software trainers

  • Private, public and voluntary sector organisations
  • Adult and further education colleges and universities
  • Software companies
  • Specialist IT training providers
  • Banks and accountancy firms

Freelance work/self-employment is an option for people with sufficient experience.

Opportunities are advertised online, by careers services and recruitment agencies and in newspapers and professional journals including Computing and Computing Weekly, as well as their online counterparts. Speculative applications are advisable. Further information is available in the TARGETjobs IT & Technology publication.

Qualifications and training required

There are routes into this profession for both school leavers and graduates.

It is possible to enter this career with a degree or higher national diploma (HND) in any subject. However, some employers prefer graduates with qualifications in relevant subjects such as computing, computer science, IT, software engineering, business studies and management.

Previous relevant computing, software or training experience (perhaps gained through industrial placements or summer internships) is normally essential, although personality and aptitude may be regarded as being equally important. Teaching and training qualifications can also be advantageous.

It is sometimes possible to enter this career without a degree or HND. To find out more about getting into IT and technology via a school leaver route, visit the IT and technology section of TARGETcareers, our website aimed at school leavers.

Key skills

  • Excellent oral and written communication
  • Administrative skills
  • Management and leadership skills
  • Organisation and efficiency
  • Analytical and technical skills
  • The ability to motivate others
  • A patient and friendly approach to teaching

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