My wife is a bookkeeper for a small non-profit. She asked me to help her automate some reports, which required me to know Windows, Crystal Reports, how to use window's task scheduler, and a fair amount of Oracle skill to hack the back end. As I was working on it, she mentioned that she wished she new SQL so she could use Crystal Reports better.
While I was working on the system, I noticed that the method they use to backup Oracle isn't a good, solid method. I'm going to try to understand what they are doing a little better, and if I still feel it's substandard, I might try to implement a more acceptable method.
If my wife had more IT skills, she could do a lot of these things herself. I already have significant accounting skills that I've earned over the years working with accounting departments, so it wouldn't take too much for me to get an accounting technical degree and become a bookkeeper.
So while I think there are many places where IT skills come in handy, any person expecting to make an IT-like salary doing so will probably be disappointed. And I doubt if I would be very challenged in a job where many of the tasks are simple data entry tasks, with only occasional needs for higher levels of skills.
All that being said, I have contemplated getting an accounting degree and provide accounting services when I retire in 5-10 years. It's something that I can do part time, doesn't require the huge investment in keeping up-to-date like being in IT or being a CPA. But I doubt if I'll be able to maintain the same salary/benefit level that I do today. So it's a two edged sword, I can leverage my IT skills to provide better accounting services than some, but I'll never be able to justify the same salary unless I become a CPA.
Not a problem if I'm retired and have retirement income that I'm only interested in supplementing. Or I have paid off my house, credit cards, and any other debt and have reduced my income needs significantly.
I think whether or not someone can leverage an IT background into a new job depends on a lot more than just learning a new trade.