In a world that has become increasingly computer-dependent, the employment outlook for computer science majors should continue to be a bright spot in the jobs sector. This field is expanding as innovations in technology create new opportunities across different industries. Each time a process is changed because of advances in technology, the employee pool is required to learn the new skill set to remain relevant in the workplace. As it stands, jobs that require specialized skills are difficult to fill.
Job Prospects for Computer Science Majors
Over 61 percent of graduates of computer science-related programs were employed full time in their field. The employment rate for all 2014 graduates was lower than 45 percent according to the State of College Hiring Report 2015 conducted by Looksharp. The same report found that the employment rate for computer science majors exceeded the 50 percent rate for graduates of science, technology, engineering and math.
Computer science graduates expect starting salaries in the high five-figure to six-figure range, and many of them are actually landing jobs that meet this expectation. About 73 percent of those surveyed by Looksharp expected salaries higher than $55,000 with an undergraduate degree, and fully 73 percent reported meeting this expectation. in an interesting twist, 12 percent expected salaries exceeding $100,000 and about 13 percent landed jobs at this pay scale.
For comparison, the average starting salary for computer science graduates was $66,161, compared to engineering at $65,000 and math and statistics graduates at $60,300. Starting pay scales for economics majors was placed at $58,600 and $58,000 for finance majors.
CS Courses for non-CS Majors
Non-computer science graduates take computer science courses to beef up their resumes and enhance their skills sets in a technology-driven workplace. To stand out in a competitive job market, non-CS majors need to show competence in the technological aspects of their field of specialization. Business majors top the list of non-CS majors enrolling in computer science-related courses at 69 percent, indicating the need for this skill set in the broad and diverse field of business. Most businesses would have a separate information technology department to oversee all of their technology needs, which is a job for computer science graduates, but each employee is expected to have the basic technological skill set to perform their tasks effectively.
Flexibility and Adaptability of Skills
Another reason for optimism with regards to the employment outlook for computer science graduates is the fact that this particular skill set is needed in just about every business and organization. Graduates can find placement as systems analysts, software developers, hardware engineers, systems architects, communication infrastructure designers and data managers among other positions. Computer science graduates can choose to work as full-time onsite employees or work in remote locations following a flexible schedule. CS graduates have many opportunities to work as third- party providers contracting their services on an as-needed basis or they can opt for a consultancy position working on a per-project basis.
Without a doubt, the employment outlook for computer science graduates will remain stable while growing at an encouraging rate given the world’s technology dependence at almost every level. Graduates and future graduates should take advantage of internships, relevant volunteer opportunities and academic resources to beef up their credentials to make the most of the career options available upon completing their degree.