The market is on the rise, and as employers shift into hiring mode the issue of IT skills shortages raises its head again. Simply google-ing ‘in demand IT skills’ produces the same five themes shown all over; Big Data, Security, Cloud, Mobile, Web.
While these are themes familiar to every CIO, they are skills that must be embedded in the delivery organisation as native or through partners. But it’s through leadership that these skills become enhanced and brought to life. The following are the roles in most demand at the moment:
- Enterprise Architecture – good architects are hard to find, and those that really get what enterprise is about are key. They support and enable the CIO function within what might be called the modern CTO agenda. Good EA’s link critical IT delivery to the commercial ‘big picture’. It’s a compelling point isn’t it!
- Web / Digital Development Leadership – as firms begin to hold more resources internally, a shift from the off and near shore trends of the last decade, development has a critical role to play in supporting and enabling businesses to embrace new customers, channels and modes of delivery.
- Programme Management - timely accurate assured technology delivery is as ever key; driving programmes beyond solution delivery to embrace business process change is a must. Those leaders who can deliver, then enable the ‘consequences of change’ are most prized.
- Business Intelligence – when is a developer not a developer; when it’s a BI developer! In other technologies, being immersed in the tools is enough. In BI there is a real demand for technical resources.
- IS & IT Security - the senior owner of an information security role is critical. Information security for many reasons is of course a business imperative, but the contribution is much wider. The IS security function must set the tone for an enterprise wide risk management framework.
As ever it is those who focus upon business outputs from IT, not the technical IT inputs who score highest. Direct alignment of IT investment to the delivery of commercial benefit is the aim of the game. While Hadoop, Hive and Pig are the technologies du jour, it’s their application that counts. It’s leadership that leverages them and leadership that endures.
Matt Cockbill is a Partner and Head of IT Leadership & EMI Practices for Berwick Partners. He recruits CIO’s, IT Directors and their leadership teams.