By Luke Fuidge, Team Leader at RedRock Consulting
These are the key trends in the tech sector and here's what they mean for candidates looking for a new role:
As we sit on the precipice of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, ground-breaking technological developments across core industries are challenging our perceptions of what is possible. However, if the revolution is to take off, it must recruit talent. Graduates, new starters and well-seasoned tech professionals have fast become hot commodities within the jobs market, their skills pivotal to widespread innovation.
If that’s you, congratulations! Your job prospects should present a number of different but equally exciting paths - but which should you choose? Depending on your ambitions, it may be worth up-skilling or specialising to enhance your offering. While technology moves fast, these are the trends can we expect to stick around and shape the future:
Automation is shifting skills
The last decade has seen a distinct focus on the integration of automation into the workplace, and with it, the fear that automated processes will do away with the need for human workers at all. If you’re in the field of technology, the chances are you know that’s not strictly true. In fact, automation is already proving potential in driving efficiency and boosting productivity.
Rather than replacing us, automation will be increasingly adopted to assist us by taking on the mundane, repetitive tasks that eat into our time. Candidates adept with automated systems will therefore be of value to businesses in implementing solutions and getting the most out of them.
Robotics enter the mainstream
As with automation, the idea of advanced robotics can set the fear in manufacturing professionals for their job security. However, with the widespread adoption of state-of-the-art robots comes a growing need for skilled workers to build, operate, and service them.
According to predictions from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for qualified robotics engineers will have grown by as much as 13 percent by the end of 2018: if there was ever a time to get to grips with the basic principles behind this up and coming technology, it’s now.
From those operating robots in factory lines to those writing the lines of code that determine their movements, candidates applying for roles in robotics will be snatched up if they boast skills in programming, problem solving, communication - but a good grasp of mathematics would not go amiss.
Cybersecurity demands talent
We’ve all seen the devastating impact that cyber-attacks can have on an organisation’s finances and reputation: naturally, most CEOs today are prioritising the need for skilled cybersecurity specialists to assist in reducing risk and keeping a close eye on emerging trends.
The bad news?
They just can’t get enough. By 2019, it’s anticipated that there will be a global shortage of 2 million information security experts to protect businesses from critical data breaches. Professionals in this sphere can expect the wave of connection requests to continue, and anyone seeking to bolster their CV and improve their employability further would be wise to invest in training in this area.
Building the Blockchain
Dubbed ‘Internet 2.0’ by avid industry soothsayers, Blockchain technology is set to revolutionise the global economy. While it may still be in its infancy, major companies such as Samsung and IBM are already leveraging blockchains to facilitate collaboration and increase transparency of transactions and digital interactions.
Of course, the full potential of this technology yet to be explored, and the next few years will likely see increased adoption and development as more companies realise how it could work for them and their customers. It’s no wonder that the job of developing blockchain distributed ledgers for businesses was ranked first among the top 20 fastest-growing job skills, with postings advertising vacancies for workers in this field growing more than 200% last year.
Just as early adopters of Bitcoin benefited from getting in at the ground floor, IT professionals looking to be a part of the next technological revolution should make learning about blockchains a priority.
Currently, the easiest way to become proficient in this area is to learn on your own through one of the many online courses available. While it isn’t essential, a background in programming will see you off to a great start.