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Top in-demand tech jobs for the present and near future

Companies have their priorities clearly set — hire the best IT talent, and do it more cheaply and quicker than the competition. Modis research has estimated that by 2024, the number of IT employment opportunities and tech jobs will grow by 12 percent.

Every business wants to transform itself digitally, and that’s only doable with an unflinching focus on the latest technologies. The result — the definition of in-demand skills and roles for tech jobs is undergoing a change.

Artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, the blockchain, augmented reality and virtual reality, IoT — these are hot and buzzing words in the tech world and all these domains are opening up larger and more inviting doors to fulfilling IT careers.

For anybody looking to make it big in IT, currently employed IT professionals looking to take their careers into overdrive, and companies looking for the right vistas to target for tech hiring, here’s a guide worth reading. These are the most in-demand tech jobs now — and probably will still be in the future.

Machine learning engineers

Artificial intelligence is the talk of the world and has been so for a couple of years. Machine learning, however, is where the action is because it’s the most practical and sophisticated methodology to realize AI.

Almost every industry is feeling the magic of machine learning — manufacturing to cybersecurity, art, and entertainment to web search, medical science to transportation, and more. Machine learning engineers are heavily in demand, yet hard to find, which naturally implies impressive salaries.

These professionals need to work with complex data sets and build algorithms using languages such as R and Python, to draw insights from patterns, and translate them into “intelligent” actions.

Computer vision engineers

An IDC study suggests that the investments in AR and VR space are expected to grow from $11.4 billion in 2017 to $215 billion in 2021. Then, there are powerful industrial forces such as the revolution of self-driving cars.

As a result, the demand for computer vision engineering experts in the market has been on a surge, and things are likely to be this way for the years to come.

Computer vision engineers need to build and improve machine vision. There’s a major overlap with machine learning, as these engineers need to develop algorithms that are able to detect, track, and classify objects. The average salary for computer vision engineers in the U.S. is $141,143 per year.

Data scientists

These are the experts responsible for discovering insights from massive structured and unstructured data. Because businesses are increasingly becoming reliant on data analytics for decision-making, the role of data scientists is becoming more important than ever.

Indeed’s data shows that job postings for data scientists increased from January 2015 to January 2018 by 75 percent.

As per Robert Half’s 2018 Technology and IT Salary Guide, the salary of a data scientist could vary from $100,000 for the 25th percentile to $168,000 for the 95th percentile. Programming and quantitative analysis are the core of data science, and a strong sense of teamwork and communication will also help you differentiate yourself.

Network engineers

As IoT makes its way into enterprises, the need for high-quality network engineering is also on the surge. Companies now need network engineers more than ever to make sure that “things” are connected in the most efficient and complete way.

Network analysts need strong technical skills, and also must be able to bring value by providing real-time information about network traffic. Network engineers and analysts will also need to up the ante, and get their hands into the domain of overlap between networking and cybersecurity.

Troubleshooting and effective communication skills, analytic and diagnostic skills, and willingness to be flexible with work hours — these are the key ingredients that enterprises look for in-network engineers.

Cisco network engineers and network operation managers easily earn more than $100,000 in annual salaries.

DevOps engineer

DevOps is delivering terrific business value. Even though there are no well-defined DevOps job descriptions, companies are still hiring people for DevOps skills and calling it DevOps engineering. Whatever it’s called, it is creating new and lucrative tech jobs that could interest you.

To make sure that you enjoy sustenance and success with such a loosely defined role, here are three skills you need to focus on:

  • Coding and scripting
  • Process redesign
  • Collaboration and communication

DevOps engineers are primarily required to leap over the proverbial wall that separates software development and IT operations management and make it possible for the organization to take more high-quality code to production in shorter time durations. The median base salary for DevOps engineers is $104,000.

Cloud engineers

The cloud computing market is expanding unabatedly. Public cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud — there just way too much going on in the market. IT professionals who can design, plan, manage, maintain, and support cloud-based systems are in huge demand.

Particularly because most enterprises are aligning towards multi-cloud and hybrid cloud approaches, they need to bolster in-house cloud technology expertise. That’s why cloud engineers are in a huge demand.

Cloud network engineers, cloud security analysis, cloud software engineers, and cloud architects – these all vistas are open for cloud engineers. Adroitness with programming languages such as Python, Java, and Ruby, apart from experience of working with Google compute engine, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Linux are key skills to attain outstanding jobs in this niche.

Mobile app developers

The penetration of mobile phones into consumer markets hardly requires any explanation. As a result, businesses want to be mobile-ready in terms of their technologies. That’s why mobile app developers are attracting starting salaries to the tune of $75,000 per year.

Mobile development skills not only make you relevant for almost all kinds of businesses’ IT departments but also empower you to branch off into entrepreneurial ventures of your own.

It’s estimated that the global mobile app economy will be worth $6.3 trillion by the end of 2018. No wonder mobile app developers are hot commodities in the skills market.

Which tech jobs to target?

The one thing to remember is — just like these careers have become coveted in the past few years, it could well be that other tech trends will boost or beat down these opportunities. The key is to be open to learning new technologies and placing yourself in the direction where the trends are taking the industry.

Featured image: Flickr / Tech Jobs Tour

Benjamin Roussey

Benjamin Roussey is from Sacramento, CA. He has two master’s degrees and served four years in the US Navy. His bachelor’s degree is from CSUS (1999) where he was on a baseball pitching scholarship. He has an MBA in Global Management from the Univ. of Phoenix (2006). Currently he lives in the Phoenix area after living in Cabo San Lucas, MX for 3 years. He enjoys sports, movies, reading, and current events when he is not working online.

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