Five Ways the Cloud Will Change Your Job

Datamation’s Jeff Vance has insights about ways cloud computing will change businesses and careers. No matter how the cloud is defined, Vance suggests, it’s the flexibility and relatively low cost of cloud-based implementations that promise to upend IT.

How many of Vance’s predictions ring true to you?

1. Those with IT jobs should start worrying . . . now.

Recovery or not, certain types of IT jobs will almost certainly disappear. If your e-mail is in the cloud, for instance, you don’t need to keep an IT worker on staff whose sole task is keeping Exchange up and running. At the same time, IT automation and cloud computing are displacing low-level, mundane IT jobs.

2. Knowledge workers say goodbye to the cubicle.

A smartphone that can access a range of applications via the cloud becomes a mini-PC.

For security pros, these mini-PCs are a boon, much better than laptops and even netbooks.Workers will no longer be compelled to sit in the office in order to access key data and applications. Telecommuting, virtual offices and mobility will all trend upward on the cloud.

3. Social networking becomes business critical.

It’s not only IT workers who must cope with social media, but pretty much every knowledge worker. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are all standard marketing and business-development tools.

4. Tech adoption spreads to the masses, and the masses much become tech savvy to compete.

The cloud has a democratizing effect. Technologies that were previously packaged as expensive on-premise solutions, and which only large enterprises could afford, are now available as on-demand, pay-as-you-go solutions that even SMBs can adopt.

5. The cloud threatens incumbents.

The cloud removes many of the barriers to entry for technology start-ups. You no longer need a heavy infrastructure investment. You no longer need lengthy development cycles. You no longer need to invest in expensive devices and software.

— Don Willmott