This week we will be taking a look at an ever expanding and constantly evolving industry: Information Technology. As technology continues to change, so do the roles of all Information Technology professionals across the globe. To help you stay on top of industry trends, we’ve looked into some of the biggest factors that will be cropping up in 2016.

Increased Connectivity

Firstly, one of the largest factors that has seen particular growth this year is what is known as ‘The Internet of Things’. This trend has existed for a while now, and focuses on the ability for everyday objects to have a connection to the Internet in order to send data and information. 2015 saw the explosion of smartwatches, Fitbits, and many other devices that allow us to analyze data about daily patterns in our lives. This information will lead to boosted productivity in both personal and work lives. Many companies will also continue to consider this feature as an option for their new products, which may lead to more job opportunities in implementing wi-fi connectivity and data collection on different products.

In addition to these types of insights, many companies are developing software to allow for trend predictions to be made, to harness data potential and formulate plans based on projections. Development of these future analytics will give many companies unique insight into the future, and this type of work will be present at many large companies.

Security System with Fingerprint ScannerInformation Security

Bluecross, Blueshield, Harvard, Last Pass, Ashley Madison, and the IRS are just a few of the larger high profile information breaches that occurred just last year. No company wants to be on the receiving end of a breach, and they certainly don’t want to make front page news the next day when it is revealed to the public. Breaches can have a hugely negative public relations impact on a company’s reputation, and most companies will take as many steps as possible to ensure that breaches don’t occur. Expect many positions that deal with security to be appearing.

Cloud Based Structures

Similar to the case with Accounting, most companies have decided to go forward with updating their servers to cloud based structures, as it is now much more affordable than have a physical data center. Cloud structures set up by companies as well as co-location centers will see more use as they become more viable than in house storage. As this shift is made more backup and recovery systems will be put in place to ensure that all information is safe from loss.

Linked to the reliance on the cloud is the need to be able to handle increased traffic across website platforms. Large businesses who run huge traffic through their websites need to be able to keep up with the continued stress on their bandwidth. Many companies have begun to change to larger GB switches to handle the increased traffic. Facebook, as an example, has decided to upgrade their ‘Wedge’ (what they call their infrastructure) from 40 GB to 100 GB switches. Although many companies won’t likely need to make a move as dramatic, they may consider an upgrade of some sort.

Man Plugs in Ethernet CablesShift to Mobile

As the world continues to become more fast paced, everyone is continuing to rely more and more on mobile technology for their on the go needs. As such, many companies have invested heavily to make sure their websites and technical infrastructure are optimized to work for mobile devices and tablets. Software development of applications for companies to strengthen their mobile presence has been on the rise for years, and continues to be a sought after skill. If you’re wondering what skills are most in demand within the profession, check out the list below compiled by Computer World. Their breakdown of the skills can be found here.

Top 2016 IT Skills By Demand

  1. IT Architecture
  2. Programming/Application Development
  3. Project Management
  4. Big Data
  5. Business Intelligence/Analytics
  6. Help Desk/Tech Support
  7. Database Administration
  8. Security/Compliance/Governance
  9. Cloud/SaaS (Software as a Service
  10. Web Development

Professionals can expect Information Technology jobs to be continually more flexible in their duties so they are able to keep up with trends and stay on the forefront of innovation. Another important skill will be the ability to be able to ‘talk business’. While in the past technology roles have reported to an immediate supervisor, many higher managers have realized the importance of these roles and taken an interest in them. Also, being able to translate tech talk to realizable principles will benefit both a professional and their employer. Look out for our next Industry Highlight, which will examine the banking industry.