Not sure what to do with your bachelor’s degree? Training and Development Specialist is a pretty solid career path that works with a lot of generic bachelor degrees, so take some notes here.
You know when you meet someone at a random gathering and say, “Hey, so what do you do for a living?” and they answer with “Oh, you’ve probably never heard of this position, but I train people in X within X company.” And there you have it; a corporate job with good benefits with only a bachelor’s degree as entry point.
Actually, its not that simple; you do have to have the right personality for this gig. A Training and Development Specialist helps organize and administer programs that train and enhance an employee’s skills and knowledge. There are T & D’s in nearly every industry. They spend a bulk of their time working with people and presenting training modules and activities.
In addition to strong communication skills and a personable demeanor, you will need to have a bachelors degree. Honestly, your degree major is not that important; however, you may pick up those winning skills within majors such as:
- Human Resources
Of course employers will prefer their employees to have experience in information technology, as these companies are relying on more e-learning and technology-based experiences. So make sure you have a solid background in computer science!
Two professional associations for T & D’s and other Human Resource fields includes the American Society for Training and Development and the International Society for Performance Improvement. These organizations offer certification programs and even though these are not required to land a position, you will be showing your future employer that you value professional expertise and that you are a credible candidate.
This is a full time job, regular work hours (9-5) are common for those in the Training and Development field. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), T&D specialists held about 228,800 jobs in 2012, and work in almost every industry imaginable.
For the most part, T&D Specialist is a corporate job; you’ll work in an office. But many of these positions will require light or frequent travel, especially if the company you work for has many branches. You’ll need to keep up with your own training, so expect to attend conferences and workshops frequently. Be a people person, and know how to make even the most boring tasks fun!
The median annual wage for a T&D specialist was $55,930 in May of 2012. The top 10% in this field are making upwards of $90k, so there is room to improve as you rake up some years of experience. According to the BLS this field is expected to grow by 15% from 2012 to 2022, which is faster than the average for all occupations.
People don’t stay in the same positions for years and years; that’s a good thing for Trainers! You will always need Trainers to train the new crop of employees. And as technological advancements take place, re-training of older employees remains another concern that will keep this field in the stable position.