There is an elevated sense of excitement and opportunity in the digital job market as the industry continues to metamorphose at alarming speed. However, the rise of automation and artificial intelligence specifically, may cause some uncertainty. The key is to embrace the changes by upgrading relevant skillsets.
Over the next five years, large organizations will digitize their businesses by investing hundreds of millions of dollars. This transformation will primarily rely on acquiring top engineering minds to spearhead their digital revolution. With such talent being hard to find, you can expect the demand for individuals with niche skillsets to significantly outweigh the supply.
Consequently, there’s an onset of job descriptions which didn’t even exist five years ago. Data scientist and robotic process automation are examples of such jobs. Many roles will also start to merge with others blurring out certain roles. For example, software developers are increasingly expanding their boundaries to include user experience (UX) and software designers are more involved in coding and testing.
Here are a few such positions which are touted to become increasingly important to organizations as they adapt to the market.
Often referred to as the mini CEO of a digital product, product owners are the visionaries and decision makers. They work closely with developers, experience designers and other stake holders and consider the technology and user experience issues to decide what features to develop. A good product owner is one who can establish strategic vision for a product, focus on delivering measurable business value, be a natural problem solver making decisions using data and have typically 3 to 5 years of product management experience
User Experience Designers
Flawless customer experience can make or break a product. Hence it is a given that a company needs to invest in talent to ensure the same. Experience designers focus on understanding the customer through ethnographic research, human-centred design, and rapid test-and-learn cycles with customers. User experience designers should have considerable experience creating or iterating products based not just on data, but also on real customer interaction and using tools such as personas, empathy maps, and customer journeys to translate research and ideas into solutions.
Machine Learning Engineer
Machine learning engineers consists of a new breed of software engineers. These professionals are well versed in data, cloud, Hadoop, machine learning algorithms and distributed computing techniques. They work closely with customer-data managers to collect and rationalize vast amount of customer data acquired from social media to purchase activities, helping them map the customer completely. With a strong computer-science foundation along with baseline knowledge of probability and statistics, they create machine-learning algorithms which rely on these data-sets to learn and iterate. A machine learning engineer’s expertise can be judged by their ability to focus on the technical solution while being a thought partner to the business.
Cyber Security Experts
With massive advancement in digital, there’s an inevitable growing threat landscape. Organizations are more prone to data breaches. To add to this, there’s a massive skills gap in the infosec industry. This is a great area of opportunity for individuals wanting to build their career in this space. Cyber security demands individuals with a solid grounding in IT fundamentals, robust coding skills and a strong understanding of architecture, administration and operating systems. Apart from how operating systems and databases work, you’ll also need to know their areas of weakness and vulnerabilities, and the best practices and procedures to prevent them. Besides this, strong soft skills such as high attention to detail, excellent problem-solving, analytical and diagnostic skills will help you secure a job in cybersecurity.
Digital Transformation Manager
Digital transformation is the integration of digital technology into all areas of a business, fundamentally changing how you operate and deliver value to customers. Companies scaling up their processes to digital will help them be more efficient and profitable. It’s a given that these firms will need a strong individual to lead their digital revolution. A digital transformation manager is responsible for identifying, qualifying, pursuing, and facilitation in closing digital opportunities across the industries. Digital transformation is also a cultural change that requires organizations to continually challenge the status quo, experiment, and get comfortable with failure. A successful manager will be able to instil this change in the organization while improving customer experience, operational agility, workforce enablement and technology integration.
NLP experts are data scientists who hold expertise in natural language processing/ understanding and semantic reasoning. They are experts in Python and generally hold a PhD/ MS in computer science focused on NLP. They build, improve and extend NLP capabilities along with researching and evaluating new/different approaches to NLP problems. Data scientists who wish to become NLP experts should increase their understanding of sentiment analysis, entity extraction, document classification, topic modelling, natural language understanding (NLU) and natural language generation (NLG). A strong understanding of text pre-processing and normalization techniques, such as tokenization, POS tagging and parsing and how they work at a low level are an added boost.
Professionals with expertise in different technologies are increasingly moving to the above new roles. However, going forward there will be a pool of talent who will have access to formal education in these areas and begin their careers with appropriate qualifications and training. Additionally, these new technologies will soon become a core part of the financial as well as the product sector, making them a necessity in delivering high-quality products and services. It’s apparent these roles are the crème de la crème of technology roles. Hence it demands aspiring professionals to drastically scale up to meet the required skillsets.