Automation brings with it huge positives for any industry including technology and it also brings with it dangers of job loss. In a survey of technology professionals, as many as 45 per cent respondents believe their jobs will be taken away or at least reduced to a great extent because of automation.
The Harvey Nash Technology Survey 2017 is based on responses from more than 3,245 technology professionals from 84 countries, most of whom believe that their carrier will be severly limited with increased automation. the survey found that 45 per cent of technology professionals dread automation as they believe that a significant part of their job will be automated within a decade.
Automation causes redundancy and this is what technology professional fear. The technological upgrade is also happening so fast that 94 per cent believe their career would be severely limited if they didn’t teach themselves new technical skills and kept ahead of the game.
Automation won’t be responsible for massive job losses in the IT industry, but certain job roles will be affected at a greater level than others. Consider the case of testing and IT operations with profesisonals in these two job roles expecting significant effect of automation in the next decade (67 per cent and 63 per cent respectively), and CIO/VP IT and Programme Management least affected (31 per cent and 30 per cent respectively).
The survey found that to tackle automation, more and more technology professionals are not concentrating on increasing their skill set over carrier progression. Self-learning has suddenly become important than formal training or qualifications; only 12 per cent indicate “more training” as a key thing they want in their job and only 27 per cent saw gaining qualifications as a top priority for their career.
Despite the increase in automation, the Survey reveals that technology professionals remain in high demand, with participants receiving at least seven headhunt calls in the last year. Software Engineers and Developers were most in demand, followed by Analytics / Big Data roles.
Respondents expect the most important technologies in the next five years to be Artificial Intelligence, Augmented / Virtual Reality and Robotics, as well as Big Data, Cloud and the Internet of Things and unsurprisingly these are also the key areas cited in what are the ‘hot skills to learn’.
Key highlights from the Harvey Nash Technology Survey 2017:
AI growth: Biggest technology growth area is expected to be Artificial Intelligence, 89 per cent of respondents expect it to be important to their company in 5 years’ time, almost four times the current figure – 24 per cent.
Big Data’s big, but still unproven. 57 per cent of organisations are implementing Big Data at least to some extent. For many it is moving away being an ‘experiment’ into something much more core to their business; 21 per cent say they are using it in a ‘strategic way’. Only three in ten organisations with a Big Data strategy are reporting success to date.
Immigration is key to the tech industry, and Brexit is a concern. The sector is overwhelmingly in favour of immigration; 73 per cent believe it is critical to their country’s competitiveness. 33 per cent of respondents to the Technology Survey were born outside the country they are currently working. Almost four in ten tech immigrants in the UK are from Europe, equating to one in ten of the entire tech working population in the UK. Moreover, UK workers make up at least a fifth the tech immigrant workforce of Ireland and Germany.
Where are all the women? This year’s report reveals that 16 per cent of respondents are women; not very different from the 13 per cent who responded in 2013. The pace of change is glacial and – at this rate – it will take decades before parity is reached.
Tech people don’t trust the cloud. Four in ten have little or no trust in how cloud companies are using their personal data, and a further five in ten at least worry about it. Trust in cloud is affected by age (the older you are the less you trust), location and job title. Male Architects, who are 30 years old or more from North America working in Government are least trusting.
The end of the CIO Role? Just 3 per cent of those under 30 aspire to be a CIO, instead they would prefer to be a CTO (14 per cent chose this), entrepreneur (19 per cent) or CEO (11 per cent). It suggests that the traditional role of the CIO is relatively unattractive to Gen Y.
Headhunters radar: Software Engineers and Developers get headhunted the most, followed closely by Analytics / Big Data roles. At the same time 75 per cent believe recruiters are too focused on assessing technical skills, and overlook good people as a result