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Up-and-coming tech jobs -- and how to land one

Mary K. Pratt | Jan. 4, 2012
Forecasts for IT hiring are almost universally predicting that project managers and business analysts will be in demand in 2012, but what about cloud transformation officers?

Skills required

Required technical skills include programming experience in HTML5 and the iOS and Android platforms, as well as graphics expertise -- specifically 3D modeling skills that include texturing, shading and rendering.

Beyond that, Burrus says, augmented reality specialists also need a particular mindset to be successful. "It will require an open, flexible mind," he says, explaining that these workers need to be able to visualize how to combine technologies in new ways to produce new results.

More tech titles of the future

It's no surprise that new tech job titles tend to emerge during times of great change in the industry. "When you look at what's emerging today, usually the new jobs are tied to the new technologies," says Sandra A. Slaughter, a professor of information technology management at the Georgia Institute of Technology College of Management.

Slaughter and other industry watchers listed these as some of the jobs out on the high-tech horizon:

Chief agile officer: As more organizations move from the linear and sequential waterfall model of development to agile development, with its iterative approach, they're looking for leaders to help with the transformation. Branndon Kelley, CIO at American Municipal Power, says he has seen these people hold titles such as chief transformation officer or agile coach. He says they're typically charged with building the methodologies that will lead an organization through a changing environment.

Flexible resource manager: Because IT is in a state of constant evolution, some departments are starting to hire people who can foresee what skills will be needed and how long they'll be needed, says TekSystems' Russell. These managers are also responsible for bringing people with new talents into the organization and integrating them with existing staff to assemble high-performance teams.

Health informatics expert: As healthcare becomes an ever larger and ever more computerized industry, technologists are needed who can optimize the acquisition, storage, retrieval and application of health-related data. Ideally, health informatics experts will understand not only IT but the unique needs of the clinical care community. "In some ways, it's taking things we already know how to do and tailoring them, developing new systems for the healthcare system," Slaughter explains.

Machine-to-machine communications enabler: Machine-to-machine communications is already present in some industries, though the application of such technology is in its early stages, according to Burrus. As companies expand their use of such communications, they'll need more and more people to develop, deploy and manage the technology.

Outsourcing/offshoring manager: "Outsourcing and offshoring are getting more complicated," Slaughter says. "The work may be going on in four or five different places now, not just in one place, so you need someone who can manage all the projects."


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