Here’s the Job Trend You Need to Know About

In some areas, tech job trends followed surprising paths during 2012. Big Data and cloud efforts, for example, were stymied at some companies by architectural, cultural and organizational issues that got in the way of data sharing, meaningful analysis and effective migration. The result: CIOs slowed down their hiring to explore possible solutions.

Art Deco WorkerThe good news, according to David Foote, CEO of researcher Foote Partners, is that hiring should ramp up in these areas in 2013 after deciding to weave architectural competencies into every role. Essentially, they’re looking for professionals who can break down internal silos by creating capability road maps and applying their tech skills within what he calls “situational architecture.” But, he notes, don’t be on the look out for new job titles. It’s the skill sets of existing jobs that are going to change.

Foote spoke with me from his office in Vero Beach, Fla.

Which cloud roles will grow or emerge in 2013?

The hot roles will include developers and engineers who can develop software for the cloud, as well as infrastructure experts responsible for overseeing data migration, vendor performance and other first-generation projects. Companies are looking for next-generation enterprise architects who understand how the cloud fits into the company’s existing structure, along with cloud administrators and resource planners who can estimate enterprise-level needs for computing capacity. Security specialists will continue to be in demand, but they’ll need the ability to identify and mitigate cloud-specific risks.

Will Big Data create new roles?

Hadoop experts and data analysts will continue to be in demand, but we’ll also see a need for data-centric developers and system administrators specializing in relational database management and open source platforms. Given the challenge of compiling and analyzing Big Data, we’ll also see the creation of a hybrid analyst/architecture role and a growing need for data scientists who have experience with statistical analysis, or MBAs instead of Ph.Ds.

Any other roles that’ll grow next year? 

Mobile application developers, wireless engineers and wireless security experts will be in demand, as companies explore the next phase of mobile computing. On the other hand, the pure Web developer is becoming extinct. The version of that role requires industry knowledge as well as e-commerce and social media expertise.

Who’s likely to lose ground?

IT generalists will continue to diminish. People are going to be more specialized and require tech skills as well as industry or functional knowledge. And with few exceptions, there’ll be fewer roles for professionals who’ve hitched their wagon to a specific vendor. The market value for vendor-issued certifications continues to plummet. In fact, there’ll be fewer roles for isolationist engineers, Java developers, infrastructure specialists and so forth. The new roles will require multidimensional skills and broad thinking rather than a vendor-driven, myopic approach.

12 Responses to “Here’s the Job Trend You Need to Know About”

  1. Can you elaborate on “the pure Web developer is becoming extinct”? I was under the impression that Rails developers and web developers in general had a bright future. I’m assuming ‘pure web developer’ means something else?

    • Hi Alex –

      When they talk about “pure Web developers,” that mean people whose skills are limited to HTML, CSS, Flash, etc. Developers who know how to work with news, advanced tools – like Rails, as you say – will do just fine. When you get down to it, people with the newer skills are more than “Web developers.” They’re more akin to “developers.”

    • Leslie Stevens-Huffman

      Hi Alex,

      Mark is correct. Foote said that overall demand for Web developers has soared but some are having a hard time finding work because they don’t have the right experience. Employers want professionals who can analyze the trends and develop a holistic solution within the context of a specific industry like retail or government services. It may not be a revelation but because it’s impacting professionals it bears repeating.

      Good luck.

  2. Funny thing about this article it’s like all the others on here. Nothing but lies filled with more lies. Reason being if you scum suckers noticed specializing in one specific area means you’ll have to employ more people to get thing done which means an overhead of at least double to get what should have been done with less people. Find you bone heads to funny with your feel good science and math. Maybe you should stick to your microcrap winblows and leave the real thinking to engineers and comp sci grads who are more equipped to think….

  3. I have rarely ran across a software engineer who has mastered the fundamentals and the specific tier (UI/Business/Data) they have chosen to work in. There are some, like 3% maybe.

    Companies need a reality check, competent engineers are hard to come by, but polyglot ones are even harder.

    p.s. offshoring will only make your problems worse.

  4. I cannot reconcile the way this article says, “people are going to be more specialized” with the way too many job advertisements seem to want expertise in all sorts of marginally related disciplines.

    For instance, some adverts I browse want embedded developers with everything from Qt to the Linux kernel, from assembler to .NET, from SPI and I2C to SIP/H.323, from FPGA Verilog to Python skills. Some even ask for hardware design experience and PCB layout skills too. Then the advert says “1-2 years experience” (LOL) which is code for a low-ball salary. (Worse, when they get no qualified local applicants, they have a perfect excuse to outsource overseas!)

    It makes me wonder what kind of hodge-podge product they could possibly be trying to create. Yet this article promotes “specialization” in the future. That does not compute for me.

    So sorry, we’re fresh out of one-person engineering teams!

  5. Trey Smith

    These two statements seem to be in direct conflict with each other:
    “IT generalists will continue to diminish.”
    “The new roles will require multidimensional skills and broad thinking rather than a vendor-driven, myopic approach.”
    Multi-dimensional and generalist seem like complimentary terms.

  6. This article states nothing useful! You have to be living under a rock to now know these trends and agree with Trey and Ed – either the Ms Huffman is not in touch or just wrote something for the sake of writing.