Top five trends for technology professionals
Technology is going to be a major driver in the UK’s effort to rebuild productivity and boost growth, according to Robert Half Technology, which has produced the following predictions for the trends affecting technology professionals in 2016.
1. Top professional roles receiving pay rises will be in IT
Three of the top five roles in Robert Half’s 2016 Salary Guide are related to technology and are predicted to attract the highest salary rises this year. They include salaries for mobile applications developers, predicted to rise by 7.4 percent to between £32,500 and £61,500; web developers (rising 7.3 percent to between £36,500 and £55,000) and information security managers (rising 6.6 percent to between £63,250 and £97,000).
2. Digital transformation opening doors for IT professionals
The growing demand for businesses to be offering anytime anywhere access seeing an increase in digital transformation projects across all sectors. Gartner’s predictions for 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2016, which highlighted the emergence of the ‘digital mesh’, an expanding set of endpoints including mobile devices, wearable, consumer and home electronic devices, automotive devices and sensors. IT professionals who can help organisations understand the potential of mobile connectivity and innovation will be in huge demand and skills are already in short supply.
3. Requirements for IT security skills will continue to evolve
Gartner also pointed to the requirement for an ‘adaptive security architecture’ which will mean less reliance on perimeter defence and rule-based security and more on application self-protection, as well as user and entity behaviour analytics. Keeping up to date with these changes in approach will be vital if companies are to fight off the ever-increasing prevalence of cyber-attacks.
4. Technology is key to delivering UK productivity
Key drivers behind the substantial salary rises predicted for technology roles of 7% plus include the need to introduce innovation to drive growth and productivity, as well as the burgeoning technology sector itself, which is recognised as a key area to deliver future growth for the UK economy.
5. Finding and keeping talent is top of the agenda for CIOs
According to the 2016 Tech Nation report the UK’s digital economy grew 32 percent faster than the rest of the economy between 2011 and 2014 and already accounts for 1.56 million jobs across the UK. As a result attracting and retaining talented technology professionals will be a key priority for CIOs this year and it will be important to benchmark salary levels and benefits packages. Recognising that motivation for IT professionals is not always related to salary is also vital: exciting projects, opportunity for innovation, flexible working and new technologies to work with are also plus points.
GfK and VMware: Innovating together on hybrid cloud
GfK has been the global leader in data and analytics for more than 85 years, supplying its clients with optimised decision inputs.
In its capacity as a strategic and technical partner, VMware has been walking GfK along its digital transformation path for over a decade.
“We are a demanding and singularly dynamic customer, which is why a close partnership with VMware is integral to the success of everyone involved,” said Joerg Hesselink, Global Head of Infrastructure, GfK IT Services.
Four years ago, the Nuremberg-based researcher expanded its on-premises infrastructure by introducing VMware vRealize Automation. In doing so, it laid a solid foundation, resulting in a self-service hybrid-cloud environment.
By expanding on the basis of VMware Cloud on AWS and VMware Cloud Foundation with vRealize Cloud Management, GfK has given itself a secure infrastructure and reliable operations by efficiently operating processes, policies, people and tools in both private and public cloud environments.
One important step for GfK involved migrating from multiple cloud providers to just a single one. The team chose VMware.
“VMware is the market leader for on-premises virtualisation and hybrid-cloud solutions, so it was only logical to tackle the next project for the future together,” says Hesselink.
Migration to the VMware-based environment was integrated into existing hardware simply and smoothly in April 2020. Going forward, GfK’s new hybrid cloud model will establish a harmonised core system complete with VMware Cloud on AWS, VMware Cloud Foundation with vRealize Cloud Management and a volume rising from an initial 500 VMs to a total of 4,000 VMs.
“We are modernising, protecting and scaling our applications with the world’s leading hybrid cloud solution: VMware Cloud on AWS, following VMware on Google Cloud Platform,” adds Hesselink.
The hybrid cloud-based infrastructure also empowers GfK to respond to new and future projects with astonishing agility: Resources can now be shifted quickly and easily from the private to the public cloud – without modifying the nature of interaction with the environment.
The gfknewron project is a good example – the company’s latest AI-powered product is based exclusively on public cloud technology. The consistency guaranteed by VMware Cloud on AWS eases the burden on both regular staff and the IT team. Better still, since the teams are already familiar with the VMware environment, the learning curve for upskilling is short.
One very important factor for the GfK was that VMware Cloud on AWS constituted an investment in future-proof technology that will stay relevant.
“The new cloud-based infrastructure comprising VMware Cloud on AWS and VMware Cloud Foundation forges a successful link between on-premises and cloud-based solutions,” says Hesselink. “That in turn enables GfK to efficiently develop its own modern applications and solutions.
“In market research, everything is data-driven. So, we need the best technological basis to efficiently process large volumes of data and consistently distill them into logical insights that genuinely benefit the client.
“We transform data and information into actionable knowledge that serves as a sustainable driver of business growth. VMware Cloud on AWS is an investment in a platform that helps us be well prepared for whatever the future may hold.”