1 (866) 866-2320 Resources Events Blog

IT Skills Trends and Opportunities from the Experts


IT Skills Trends and Opportunities from the Experts


Hadoop, Cloud, Analytics, Data scientists, IT Architecture, Mobile Apps.

As more businesses adopt disruptive technologies like virtualization and cloud computing, as well as take on the challenges of Big Data and managing mobile devices in the enterprise, specific IT skills are growing in demand. The new technologies are pushing the need for a different mix of abilities. Now IT professionals need to learn radically different skills. 

A shortage of analysis skills - and slow-to-change attitude - may stand in the way of adopting the emerging technologies. 

While new technologies will stimulate the job market, these can also impact the marketability of IT professionals, as new skills and abilities come into demand.

The new IT world will be fundamentally different than the old IT world. Prospective job seekers will need to upgrade their own knowledge-base and skillset. 

Below we present insights and career advice from IT industry experts on which skills to develop and what's looking hot in IT.

Have your own idea or see trends going another direction? Share your input with our IT community in the comments section below.

1. 6 Essential Skills For The Cloud Era (InformationWeek)

InformationWeekAdvice by: Cindy Waxer, Freelance Journalist

Skills in brief:

  • Sharpen your assessment skills.
  • Act as a systems integrator.
  • Think like a CEO.
  • Get certified.
  • Brush up on being a one-person cloud provider.
  • Consider yourself an internal service provider.

Great advice: "IT people will still be required to see how these new cloud resources will integrate with those existing systems, software, and data sources. Knowing how to integrate new cloud capabilities with existing resources and being able to move data around are invaluable skills in today's cloud landscape."

Link: See the advice

2. 9 Hot IT skills for 2012 (ComputerWorld)

9 Hot IT skills for 2012Advice by: Rick Saia, Freelance Writer

Predictions insight:

  • Programming and Application Development
  • Project Management
  • Help Desk/Technical Support
  • Networking skills for IT professionals 
  • IT professionals skilled in BI
  • Data center operations and systems integration
  • Web 2.0
  • Security
  • Telecommunications

Great advice: "the demands of having data available to achieve guaranteed IT service levels underscore the need for people who are experts in disaster recovery and business continuity. Companies need to ensure that the systems that users depend on will be there when they need them, and those systems need to be backed up and replicated."

Link: See the advice

3. 7 skills every IT manager needs to survive the 2010s (InfoWorld)

Advice by: Rusty Weston, Editor

Skills in brief:

  • Balance specialization and cross-functional expertise
  • Become an arbiter of risk
  • Build strong working relationships
  • Embrace analytics
  • Embrace enterprise architecture
  • Move from project management to program management
  • Actively communicate

Great advice: "Many IT managers focus solely on mastering new tech skills to increase their value to their employers -- a strategy that makes perfect sense, but only up to a point. Once you reach that point, you can damage your career by becoming viewed as only technically proficient and being perceived as unskilled in business planning and learning how to communicate and collaborate well with customers, coworkers, and service providers."

Link: See the advice

4. How to Retool Your IT Skills for the Cloud (CIO)

Advice by: Meridith Levinson, Senior Feature Writer

Skills in brief:

  • Understand the basics - the concept of cloud computing
  • Learn about cloud computing's hot areas, such as platform-as-a-service
  • Cloud computing will change some traditional IT jobs

Great Advice: "As you're evaluating solutions to build within the cloud and work within the cloud, you have to be open to looking at startup companies that are just getting off the ground. That's a hard pill to swallow for many IT leaders."

Link: See the advice

5. How Cloud Computing & Web Services Are Changing the IT Job Market (Mashable)

Advice by: Meghan Peters, Community Manager

Great Advice: "The online space is immense. If you're able to combine statistics and artificial intelligence methods to spot patterns in huge data sets, a multitude of job opportunities await you. Data mining helps businesses gain an informational advantage over competitors, making the field an essential area of expertise.

Link: See the advice

6. The Evolution -- not Revolution -- of IT skills for the cloud (TechTarget)

Advice by: Dan Sullivan, Contributor

Skills in brief:

  • System administrators will do more than administer
  • Security will always be in demand
  • IT managers move up the value chain

Great Advice: "IT staffs with skills to identify risks in cloud services and formulate measures to control these risks will cut costs for a business without putting it at risk. Security pros with these skills will be in high demand."

Link: See the advice

7. Shift to Cloud Requires Fresh IT skills (ComputerWorld)

ComputerWorldAdvice by: Joab Jackson Writer

Great Advice: "The role of IT will be much more about innovation. Today, CIO duties are largely centered around the management of information using industry processes such as the Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) and the IT Information Library (ITIL). In the future, CIOs will have to think more about innovation as well. Cloud computing will also require more IT architecture skills than are commonly found in-house."

Link: See the advice

8. Cloud Computing Skills Are Skyrocketing (CRN)

CRNAdvice by: Andrew R Hickey Community Manager

Great Advice: "The cloud computing market is evolving at such a pace that while the number of job postings is skyrocketing, the talent isn't there to fill the positions."

Link: See the advice

9. Gartner: IT Staff Need New Skills to Manage Big Data (Computer Weekly)

Computer WeeklyAdvice by: Bill Goodwin, Management Editor

Great Advice: "You need to have people who can think about information needs, and that is a different skillset to IT. It's a profound change that everybody needs to get to grips with, says Debra Logan vice-president and distinguished analyst at Gartner"

Link: See the advice

10. 'Big data' creating big career opportunities for IT pros (NetworkWorld)

NetworkWorldAdvice by: Carolyn Duffy Marsan , Senior Editor

Great Advice: "IT departments also are adding data-centric developers and system administrators who specialize in tools such as the open source Apache Hadoop software. Hadoop is designed for data-intensive, distributed applications and used by such popular websites as Yahoo, Facebook, LinkedIn and eBay."

Link: See the advice

11. 'Big data' Skills in Short Supply (ComputerWorld)

ComputerWorldAdvice by: Stephen Bell 

Great Advice: "this kind of analysis demands a different set of skills, which belong in the mainstream of the business and are unlikely to be found in the IT department. The expert in the big-data style of manipulation is described as a "data miner" and a "data scientist". They are rare and there will be a substantial learning curve."

Link: See the advice

12. Big Data Skills Bring Big Dough (GigaOM)

GigaOMAdvice by: Barb Darrow  Senior Writer

Great Advice: "Companies in all industries now understand that they need to make better sense of the massive data sets at their disposal — data sets that can include computer log files, social networking feeds, digital video or audio, you name it. That's led to a spike in demand for data scientists"

Link: See the advice

13. IT Skills in Demand (Information Management)

Infomation ManagementAdvice by: Justin Kern, Associate Editor

Skills in brief:

  • Cybersecurity
  • Servers and data center management
  • Networks and infrastructure
  • Databases and information management

Great Advice: "Hot industry topics like cloud computing, Hadoop and mobile application management carried relatively low levels of concern, in terms of IT skills, as those aspects of skills are only beginning to proliferate across many enterprises."

Link: See the advice

14. 3 Essential Skills for IT Professionals (O'Reilly)

O'ReillyAdvice by: Jonathan Reichental, Ph.D., Community Manager

Skills in brief:

  • Coordination
  • Analysis
  • Innovation

Great Advice: "Many roles within IT will continue to be valuable but may be more sensitive in the long run to the business landscape shifts we are experiencing. Rather than a decreasing need overall, I predict we'll continue to see a greater role for IT in the future as well as IT skills being an important part of almost every information worker's inventory of capabilities."

Link: See the advice

15. Top 10 IT Skills most-often mentioned in Job Ads (ZDNet)

Top 10 IT Skills most-often mentioned in Job AdsAdvice by: Joe McKendrick , Author and independent analyst

Skills in brief:

  • HTML5
  • Mobile app
  • Android
  • Twitter
  • jQuery
  • Facebook
  • Social Media
  • iPhone
  • Cloud Computing
  • Virtualization

Link: See the advice

About the Author
Martin Perlin