Technology is rapidly changing with new advancements coming out every day. With the changes in mobile technology, cloud computing and the Internet of Things, it should come as no surprise that information technology has some of the most in-demand jobs according to U.S. News, with jobs ranking high in the majority of the seven best job categories.
Let’s take a look at the five information technology career areas that will be extremely popular in 2018, and are only expected to continue to grow in popularity for years to come.
As the cloud continues to grow, so do the available career positions. Currently there is a huge demand for qualified employees in the cloud sector with 83 percent of businesses ranking cloud skills as critical for digital transformation in 2017. With some popularly emerging positions such as cloud administrators, cloud architects, cloud security managers and cloud application developers, there is no shortage of possibilities. Google alone has over 3,000 available positions focusing on some aspect of the Cloud in the United States.
Some existing positions that translate nicely into a career in the cloud include systems engineers, network engineers and database administrators, as all of them have some level of understanding of the technical-level requirements for working with the cloud. But for starting out new in a career in cloud it is important to have an understanding of languages such as SQL, .NET, Java and PHP, as well as a working knowledge of the Linux operating system (OS), since many cloud platforms are moving to that specific OS.
Many cloud professionals are also expected or required to attain certain cloud certifications such as AWS, the Certificate of Cloud Security Knowledge, Cloud Certified Professional or VMware Certified Professional to name a few.
Security & Compliance
Cybersecurity is an ever evolving need with new technology and new threats emerging every single day. It is even more important for companies since all companies, regardless of how high-security and classified they are, have secure and important data that needs to be protected.
From a cybersecurity risk consultant to a senior director of information security & compliance, companies need cybersecurity professionals at all levels to help prevent against breaches and cyberattacks that are estimated to cost the average company close to $3.6 million annually.
In order to excel in a security and compliance role, skills such as the ability to look at cybersecurity from an analytical standpoint, a degree in computer science and certifications such as CISSP, ENCE and GCFE/A are important.
Internet of Things
Internet of Things (IoT) was designed to help make lives easier and to eliminate the need for a lot of work. While it is eliminating work, it is creating an expansive amount of jobs to help to maintain and grow. In fact, the IDC predicts that IoT jobs are going to increase by over 16 percent in the next year alone.
One of the great things about IoT is that it truly spans all industries creating endless career opportunities, which is wonderful news for technology job searchers everywhere. While the skills needed to be successful in an IoT developer career differ from position to position, some skills tend to be overarching. A strong background in security and networking are important in the design, implementation and longevity of an IoT solution.
IoT developers should have a working knowledge of network standards and protocols, security engineering skills such as threat assessment and event management, as well as some machine learning and artificial intelligence knowledge. Some other important skills that are suggested for a career in IoT are UI/UX design, AutoCAD drafting and and understanding or fluency in Node.js and C/C++.
The future of the workforce relies heavily on artificial intelligence (AI). AI and its sub-category of machine learning are actively growing with more and more companies using chatbots and voice recognition, and companies like manufacturing or healthcare using it for more complex tasks such as building products or assisting in surgeries, in their respective orders.
There are many different components that go into creating and maintaining AI that the positions available for these positions range widely from software analysts and developers, algorithm developers and electrical engineers to graphic designers, digital musicians and textile manufacturers.
Preparing for a career in AI is just as varied as the job positions available, but it is highly recommended to focus on courses heavy in mathematics, graphical modeling, physics, engineering, robotics and computer science.
Big Data and Analytics
Data is all around us and big data is becoming an important aspect of the way technology and business function. Having the skills necessary to analyze and help grow big data is on the rise. So much so that the U.S. will face a shortage of about 190,000 data scientists and 1.5 million managers and analysts who can understand and make decisions using Big Data by 2018. Some currently in-demand big data jobs include titles such as data analyst, database administrator, data scientist, data architect and big data engineer.
For many of these positions, strong analytical skills such as being able to visualize and interpret data are extremely important. A background in programming is also beneficial, especially a fluency or strong understanding of SQL, Java, and Python languages.
Even with the rapid changes in technology, it is expected that we will continue to see career growth in these five topics for many years to come.
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