2019 Tech Trends and the Jobs That will Power Them
It’s an exciting time to be in the workforce. New technologies and trends are forging new career paths for tech workers, and require specialization in a slew of new tools, working arrangements, and methodologies.
Let’s review some of the up and coming trends of 2019 and the job opportunities that will open up to service them.
GDPR led many of 2018’s biggest headlines, and it’s still news even in the middle of 2019. Many companies have taken steps to comply, but these measures are still considered insufficient. And then there are those other companies who haven’t even bothered to try.
In addition to GDPR, the general public is demanding greater transparency from private and government organizations to be more responsible in the way they collect, handle, and store data.
Because of this, there is a growing demand for IT or data security analysts. Many of these positions will require CISSM or CISP certification. Higher positions include a data protection officer (DPO), which is an enterprise security leadership role that is responsible for overseeing the organization’s data protection strategy.
Internet of Things
IoT-capable devices aren’t new, but more businesses are adopting them to supplement their core products and services. Connected devices are becoming a standard feature across multiple consumers and B2B products, and businesses that offer this capability need the manpower to be able to handle the development, support, and security issues necessary to provide customers with a high-quality IoT-capable device.
Internet of Things engineering is a real thing, and differs from regular wireless devices because of the protocols and services involved, how data interacts with the rest of the network, and the control systems being utilized. Not to mention the security required to prevent the device from being pulled into a botnet. Ambitious engineers and developers can safely specialize in IoT-related skills and be assured a prime spot in an electronics product company.
Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning
Organizations have been collecting data for years, and have gotten progressively better at managing and storing it. But very few organizations seem to know how to use it effectively. It’s not a limit of technology anymore: modern IT infrastructures (and even individual computers) are powerful enough to sort through reams of data and run machine learning and AI programs. It’s now just a limit of the imagination–of satisfying needs organizations didn’t even know they had.
The challenge now is in developing applications that are a) effective, b) useful, and c) reliable. There are a wide range of available jobs in AI for tech workers of any temperament. Those with a gift for managing numbers can be data scientists that manage the flow of information. Those with a taste for the nuts and bolts of an application can be AI software developers or engineers. Jobseekers who want to discover exciting new applications for AI can be research scientists and business intelligence specialists. It’s a hot field whose demand far outstrips the available talent.
Cyber attacks are becoming more common, and hackers are becoming more brazen and creative in their approaches. Governments are now taking the threat so seriously they are willing to respond to cyber attacks with lethal force. Organizations have to shore up security on all fronts to protect their interests and that of their customers–and for that, they need manpower.
Cybersecurity professionals are a hot commodity in today’s job market. Technically-minded individuals can be software developers and security engineers, while those with a gift for planning and organization can be security architects. There are even cryptographer and cryptanalyst roles for gifted mathematicians.
Many of the available jobs are for in-house security departments, but those who value their independence can be white hat hackers and security consultants.
Augmented reality has had a big impact across the consumer market–arguably even more than virtual reality has, despite its relative youth. Snapchat and Pokemon GO are two of the most visible examples of AR’s appeal to mainstream audiences. Amazon and the Microsoft HoloLens are the biggest names associated with AR right now, but there are a host of smaller players driving innovation in the space.
The market is ripe for the next hot AR app to capture the consumer’s imagination. Companies invested in the mobile space are working feverishly on prototypes they hope will be the next killer augmented reality app, which will require developers, designers, and engineers who have the skills and drive to excel in this technology.
Finance is in a position to make big technological strides that have a wide impact across both personal and business finance:
There is a sharp rise in mobile banking and accelerated growth, particularly in third-world nations where visiting physical branches is impractical. As such, banking institutions are investing more resources in their mobile development and support teams and the marketing teams responsible for helping the app penetrate the new market.
Cryptocurrency is still making headlines and attracting some of the sharpest talent, with coin exchanges, cryptocurrency banks, and crypto mines all looking for crypto technicians, engineers, and developers. There are also opportunities for financial consultants who specialize in purchasing, trading and handling cryptocurrency for their clients.
Blockchain, formerly bound to the idea of cryptocurrency, is now being expanded for use in other industries and applications. Blockchain engineers and architects now command a hefty fee for their expertise, since blockchain still isn’t being taught in most schools.
And let’s not forget document management technology, smart contracts, and electronic signature companies like Verisign. Although these companies don’t capture the imagination (and headlines) the way most startups do, they are still a vital component in modern global commerce. They need talented tech workers just as much as the fanciest startup, and the need is entrenched enough in the financial world to be able to provide employees with the stable footing that more volatile Silicon Valley companies can’t.
Modern tech workers are spoiled for choice. Technology is advancing at such a rapid pace that there is no shortage of opportunities for a properly motivated and qualified individual.
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