Almost half (45%) of technology professionals surveyed by Harvey Nash fear a ‘significant’ part of their jobs will be automated within 10 years making their skills redundant.
The study, which polled more than 3,200 technology professionals from 84 countries, carries something of a pessimistic tone throughout. 94% of respondents say their career would be ‘severely limited’ if they do not teach themselves new technical skills, while self-learning was cited more frequently than training or formal qualifications as a key aspect of their jobs.
Naturally, not all job roles and sectors are equally affected in this shakeup. According to the research, testers and IT operations professionals are most likely to think their role will feel the pinch of automation – with 67% and 63% of respondents citing it respectively – with the CIO, or VP IT role, and programme management least affected.
The Internet of Things is cited alongside artificial intelligence, augmented and virtual reality, robotics, and big data and cloud as the key areas to upskill. Last month, research from Gemalto found that the UK is experiencing a spike in demand for job skills related to the IoT.
“Technology careers are in a state of flux. On the one side technology is ‘eating itself’, with job roles increasingly being commoditised and automated, on the other side new opportunities are being created, especially around artificial intelligence, big data and automation,” said Simon Hindle, director of Harvey Nash Switzerland.
“In this rapidly changing world the winners will be the technology professionals who take responsibility for their own skills development, and continually ask: ‘where am I adding value that no other person – or machine – can add?’”
Brian Prentice, research vice president at Gartner, warned delegates at the firm’s Symposium-ITxpo in Australia last week around the dangers of fully automated systems and the environments around them. “Environments that are largely uncontrollable are not amenable to smart machine projects because it is difficult, if not impossible, to model accurately,” he said. “The trick then is to figure out what is actually controllable and limit smart machines to that which can be accurately modelled and managed.”
Interested in hearing industry leaders discuss subjects like this and sharing their IoT use-cases? Attend the IoT Tech Expo World Series events with upcoming shows in Silicon Valley, London and Amsterdam to learn more.