A day as a network manager

You work at your local NHS hospital, beginning at 9am. This morning, you're updating security on the hospital computer network, so no one can hack in and view confidential patient data. You send emails requesting all staff change passwords, and update the encryption settings on the hospital intranet. Next, you back up all electronic patient data entered over the last month, and ensure it's stored securely. In the afternoon, you have a meeting with the finance team and an external supplier to discuss the possible upgrade of the telephone system throughout the hospital. You enjoy using your skills to help others, and contributing to the smooth running of a life-saving establishment.

Does this sound like you?

You have excellent IT knowledge, and keep up to date with the latest developments. You communicate well with others, are a good leader and enjoy planning.

What's next after GCSE?

You'll usually need a minimum of five A-C grade GCSEs (or the equivalent), in order to take A levels (or the equivalent) at college or 6th form. It's also possible to work as a network manager if you have proven experience, so you might consider gaining entry-level employment in IT. There are sometimes informatics apprenticeships in the NHS.

What's next after A level and beyond?

You'll usually need at least two A levels in order to take a degree in computer science, or related subject. Check university prospectuses for individual entry requirements. Alternatively, there are sometimes informatics apprenticeships in the NHS. Job and apprenticeship vacancies in the NHS can be found on the NHS Jobs website www.jobs.nhs.uk. You can also find apprenticeships on the Gov.uk website www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship