Around the world, across the industries, C-suite executives are concerned about the widening digital talent gap in their organization.
AI, big data, cryptocurrency, cyber-security – with so many technologies creating buzz at once, it is becoming increasingly difficult for organizations to determine which skill set they need to invest in.
Here are top 10 essential digital skills that you must have on-board to succeed in 2019, whether you are an organization aiming at transformation or a service provider delivering next-gen services to clients.
With today’s advanced analytics tools, companies now have the means to analyze heaps of untapped data they have about their customers and organization. But they also need expert data analysts and scientists who can efficiently use these analytics tools to do all sort of analysis work (descriptive, diagnostic, predictive, and prescriptive) on that data, interpret it, and come up with crucial insights.
Besides analysis, the data science team should be especially skilled in the visualization part in order to showcase data and create reports that are easily understandable for the management and can assist them in making decisions.
Data engineering involves building tools and infrastructure that data analysts/scientists use. While data science focuses on analytics, data engineering is more about data consolidation and warehousing. It is essentially software engineering whose primary purpose is to keep data clean and flowing and deploy data insights at scale.
On the tech side, SQL, Java, Python, Hadoop, and Linux are the hottest data engineering skills currently. In fact, according to a recent study by Stitch Data, the demand for data engineers exceeds the demand of data scientists.
No business needs a reminder that it needs to adopt a mobile-first approach in current dynamics – be it customer apps, content, or internal communication. The mobile computational environment in itself is evolving constantly. So, it is important that developers and marketers stay abreast with the latest mobile trends and be proactive in delivering customers an optimized and state-of-the-art mobile experience.
And in 2019, mobile expertise must not be limited to smartphones or tablets – there is a whole new generation of mobile devices hitting mainstream adoption such as wearables, IoTs, and more.
UX design may sound nothing new, but with user’s attention span constantly declining across platforms, focusing on it has become all the more important. In current dynamics, UX isn’t just about visually appealing UI and tried-and-tested navigation. It has become more of a creative-meets-analytical type of role, where every decision is backed by data rather than just guts.
Today’s UX designers also need to think in terms of multi-platform since modern customers’ buying journey span over multiple platforms. So, it is important to deliver a consistent digital customer experience across multiple platforms to ensure a smooth purchase experience.
Machine learning is unquestionably one of the hottest digital skills in demand today. From voice assistants to data analysis and self-driving cars, there are tons of use cases of this futuristic tech across industries. In fact, all the other digital skills listed here has or may have some use of machine learning for better efficiency.
However, the AI/machine learning ecosystem is quite vast and is mostly exclusive to research currently. Only the supervised learning part of it has corporate applications as of now. So, it is crucial to know the current state of machine learning in the corporate world, how your business can leverage it, only then invest in acquiring the required skilled resources.
Thanks to the Bitcoin buzz, the tech world is now aware of blockchain (even if many still don’t understand it). Blockchain (or distributed ledger) has given rise to decentralized applications, which are inherently more secure and transparent. Apart from its widespread use cases in the finance sector (cryptocurrency), today, the tech community has found a number of other use cases for blockchain such as crowdfunding, file storage, identity management, digital voting, and more.
Building blockchain-based applications requires skills such as networking engineering, cryptography computing, database designing and programming languages (C++, Java, Python, Solidify, etc.).
AR/VR is already transforming the gaming and entertainment industries and is also gaining wide adoption in media, marketing, advertising, health care, and manufacturing. Businesses of retail, travel, and many other industries have already begun to provide AR capabilities in their apps.
Besides these, AR/VR has opened a whole new world of possibilities how people will consume content in the near future. Currently, video is the most popular mode of content consumption. But as AR/VR based interactive content become easier to create and easier to access, it will naturally surpass video.
Data breaches are the biggest threats of the digital age. And when they happen, they often result in long term financial loses for a company. And as the security measures develop and evolve, so do the threats. So, network security or cybersecurity is undoubtedly one of the most important digital skills to have on-board in today’s business environment.
In fact, according to a recent ESG report, cybersecurity has topped the list of the problematic shortage of skills in organizations globally. And over the past few years, the concern has only grown (from 42% in 2015-16 to 53% in 2018-19).
Cloud adoption continues to grow. According to LogicMonitor’s Cloud Vision 2020 survey, 83% of enterprise workload will be in the cloud by 2020. To accommodate cloud adoption, migration, and upgrade, organizations need network engineers, cloud architects, developers, and system administrators with relevant cloud computing skills.
However, today the cloud is not the same decade old cloud. From multi-cloud to edge computing, it has evolved a lot and organizations need to keep the latest trend in check and regularly upgrade their cloud strategy to make the most out of it.
Social media has matured over the past decade. It is no longer exclusive to connecting friends and communities. Serious business happens on it every day. Engagement on social media is far better than traditional mediums. For instance, LinkedIn’s InMail open rates are 300% higher than email. And given the nature of the platform, the business world has moved away from hard selling to value-based selling, where mutual trust and relationship with clients/customers is of the highest priority.
So, in current dynamics, having a marketing team with expert social selling skills is must for continuous growth of the organization.
The skill gap is the most prominent threat that looms over the business world today. And multiple reports warn that it will get worse in the near future. It is imperative for C-suite executives to react to this threat and come up with ways to handle the widening digital talent gap in their organization.
And in case we missed mentioning any digital skills that you think are crucial in the current digital age, let us know in the comment section below.