The shortage of talent on the IT job market is already hampering many companies in their ability to innovate and enhance performance.
Forward-looking companies are trying to determine how technological developments are going to impact their businesses in the upcoming year. By being aware of coming changes, they can also form strategies to get the IT talent they need to keep their businesses moving forward.
We’re all aware of the fact that in our global economy, technology is becoming more and more integrated into our personal lives.
It’s evolving at unprecedented speeds.
Consider the following statistics:
- It took telephones 35 years to be adopted throughout the U.S.
- It took us seven years to fully integrate the Internet into our lives.
- It took smartphones just four short years to permeate the market.
Today’s tech-savvy consumers are constantly eager to use the next generation of devices or software.
Technologies that seemed unthinkable just a few years ago are now a reality. In addition, the availability of big data and the ability to store and analyze it, is transforming a large number of industries ranging from healthcare to automotive.It took telephones 35 years to be adopted by the U.S. market, in comparison to 4 years for smartphones!Click To Tweet
So how will these developments impact trends in the IT job market this year? Let’s take a look:
1. There will be a huge demand for network systems and data communications analysts.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobs for IT professionals was expected to increase from 292,000 in 2008 to 447,800 in 2018.
Networks are, of course, increasingly important to companies.
With businesses using everything from cloud-based storage to collaboration software to file sharing, it’s imperative that their networks are efficient, robust, and secure.
Employers looking for top IT talent to fill network systems and data communications analyst positions are best advised to think outside of the box.
College graduates with a Bachelor of Science degree aren’t necessarily the most qualified for these positions.
It’s more important to hire someone who understands the ins and outs of network architecture. This expert also needs to be a fast learner, since the software and structures keep evolving. A worker with an agile mind and good problem solving abilities is a solid choice.
In terms of recruiting for these positions, managers should consider looking at practical experience, as well as using online aptitude tests.When hiring for IT, an agile mind and good problem solving abilities is a solid choice.Click To Tweet
2. Machines and equipment will get smarter.
Smart machines are equipped with computers that use pattern recognition to monitor, measure, and improve their own performance—in other words, to make themselves smarter.
This will result in more efficient use of resources and improved product quality.
Employers will likely need to bring in talent with specific knowledge of the relevant equipment and computer processes in order to install and integrate smart machines into their companies’ infrastructures.
3. The Internet of Things (IoT) and device meshes will play an important role in your company’s operations and services.
The IoT consists of smart machines that are connected to the Internet and can autonomously perform actions, measurements, and analysis. They can also communicate with other devices elsewhere.
A device mesh connects a wide variety of devices not only to an endpoint, but also to each other.
In order to benefit from these technologies, you’ll need IT talent who can adapt your networks, systems, production lines, and other resources to the IoT—as well as maintain and upgrade the systems.
You’ll also need IT talent who can establish and maintain a device mesh that enables your employees, customers, and clients to be connected at all times without compromising security.
Companies will need experienced IT consultants who are specialized in these systems to establish them.
However, when it comes to maintenance, it is likely to be more cost-effective to have a consultant train your current IT personnel.
4.Companies will collect, store, and analyze significantly more big data.
As the IoT expands and device meshes become the norm, there will be unlimited opportunities to collect big data.
Data about everything from individual health monitoring in patients and vehicle performance of new cars to online shopping behavior and wildlife monitoring will be collected and stored in databases.
Then businesses can access, analyze, and compare the data as needed.
As Jack Wallen points out in his TechRepublic article “10 predictions for the IT job market in 2016,” there will be an increased need for engineers who can design, construct, and manage massive databases.
Considering that much of this can be performed offsite, employers should consider BPO to independent consultants who specialize in this field.In 2016, there will be an increased need for engineers who can design, construct, and manage massive databases.Click To Tweet
5. Systems and network security will become even more sophisticated.
The increase in connectivity and valuable data will continue to attract cybercriminals.
With the IoT connecting systems, devices, and networks to one another, it will be even more critical for companies to maintain robust security measures.
There will be an increased need for IT talent who specialize in cyber security and possess the ability to design systems that can easily be adapted—or even adapt themselves—when new vulnerabilities appear.
6. The power of the mobile generations must be recognized.
Millennials and Gen Z use mobile devices for everything from studying and working to communicating and watching movies.
Desktop computers and laptops are no longer necessary.
This means that businesses need responsive websites that are just as user-friendly on smartphones as they are on larger computers.
Web designers and developers, many of them freelancers, will be in high demand as more and more companies embrace this development.Desktop or laptop computers are no longer the norm, or even necessary for the mobile generation.Click To Tweet
7. Apps will be critical.
It seems like there’s an app for everything—and there’s a reason for that. Apps streamline digital processes, making them simpler and more user-friendly.
Every business will have to assess how it can improve its customers’ or clients’ experience with an app—and then find the right talent to develop that app.
Experience and skill level will be more important than degrees, in this IT job market.
Moreover, most businesses will benefit from working with independent or temporary app developers.
8. Mobile payments will increase.
More and more people will be using their smartphones to pay for products and services.
Mobile commerce now accounts for over 30% of all U.S. eCommerce.
Failing to offer this option is likely to quickly have an adverse impact on your bottom line.
Companies will need IT talent who can securely integrate mobile payment platforms with their existing payment structures.Mobile commerce now accounts for over 30% of all U.S. eCommerce.Click To Tweet
9. You’ll need to adapt to changes to social media.
We all know how critical it is for companies to maintain a good social media presence, both in terms of their product/service and brand perception.
However, to harness the power of social media to your advantage, it’s important to be up to date on which platforms are being used by which demographics.
Snapchat and Vine are very popular among the youngest generation, while Facebook remains the go-to platform for those who are 45+.
In addition, while managing your social media presence isn’t strictly an IT position, setting up the various management tools, APIs, and extensions could require the expertise of an IT worker.
Consider which of these nine IT job market trends are relevant to your business.
Then, start planning the most cost-effective and secure way for your company to meet your IT talent demands for 2016—and beyond.