In 1789, Ben Franklin noted that "Everything appears to promise that it will last; but in this world nothing is certain but death and taxes." However, if Franklin were alive today, he might be tempted to another certainty to his list: Technology never remains the same.
With that in mind, here are six of the most in-demand IT jobs in 2022 — and six on their way out:
1. Information Security Analyst
Companies are increasingly focused on enterprise security and privacy, putting information security analysts in high demand.
These information technology professionals design and implement IT security systems and solutions to protect their organizations' networks. Information security analysts monitor complex computer networks for security flaws and anticipate potential security risks. Information security analysts need strong technical and analytical skills so they can understand IT requirements and objectives as well as design, analyze and deploy IT security systems. (Also read: How can IT security be measured?)
2. Artificial Intelligence Engineer
An artificial intelligence engineer's job is to determine the best way to solve a business issue by applying AI. They often work closely with, but are not the same as, machine learning engineers — who are broadly responsible for creating and managing an organization's learning algorithms.
Artificial intelligence engineers are expected to have a strong background in mathematics and statistics as well as programming languages such as Python and R. Other common responsibilities for this role include:
- Calculating business objectives pertaining to applied AI.
- Exploring how machine learning concepts can solve specific business problems.
- Creating proofs-of-concept (POCs) to validate their hypotheses.
- Workshopping solutions to roadblocks in an organization's AI application. (Also read: 4 Common Machine Learning Pitfalls and How To Avoid Them.)
- Measuring the return on investment (ROI) achieved through an AI initiative.
- Promoting best practices for data wrangling, data processing and project documentation.
3. Data Scientist
Today, companies are amassing more data than ever before in an attempt to operate more efficiently. Without data scientists, organizations would have massive amounts of data but no way to present or analyze it. And if organizations can't analyze their data, they can't glean insights to help executives make better business decisions.
Data scientists capture, maintain, process, analyze and share data throughout the business, making data scientists in-demand across nearly every industry. (Also read: Job Role: Data Scientist.)
4. Systems Analyst
Systems analysts are responsible for the following:
- Designing methods to help solve business problems by analyzing organizations' IT systems.
- Investigating and fixing problems efficiently and cost-effectively.
- Testing databases and programs to ensure they're running efficiently.
- Conducting security audits.
- Creating and maintaining documentation about their organizations' systems.
Systems analysts must be familiar with a variety of operating systems, programming languages, hardware configurations and software/hardware platforms. They must also think creatively and have top-notch communication and problem-solving skills. (Also read: Job Role: Systems Analyst.)
5. Cloud Architect
Cloud architects plan, design, deploy and maintain their companies' public, private, or hybrid cloud environments. In addition, cloud architects act as consultants to their companies and, as such, they must stay up-to-date with the latest cloud trends and issues.
6. Software Developer
Software developers design, develop, implement, test and maintain their companies' software systems.
Developers must be able to code, design, and build apps, websites and/or mobile apps. They also must know how to work with a variety of programming languages, including HTML, Java, Microsoft .NET, and SQL Server.
Software developers have to understand their clients' requirements so they can offer recommendations to improve web applications, software applications and mobile applications to meet user needs.
6 IT Jobs on the Way Out
1. Network Engineer
Network engineering used to be one of the most difficult and critical roles in any company. They design, set up and manage an organization's computer networks. They're also responsible for getting the network back online and functioning properly after an outage.
2. Quality Assurance Specialist
Dedicated quality assurance (QA) roles are disappearing because, increasingly, companies are merging them with developer roles as it becomes more complex to develop and test software.
3. Front-End Web Developer
As organizations move to drag-and-drop web development services, such as Squarespace, they no longer have much need for front-end developers. (Also read: 6 No-Code AI Platforms That Are Accessible to SMBs.)
4. On-Premises Data Center Manager
As legacy on-premises data centers become obsolete, IT employees managing those data centers will also become obsolete.
Moreover, as the cloud becomes more pervasive, IT will be focused on transforming the business through data analytics and automation rather than activities that fall under the "keeping the lights on" category.
5. Application Support Technician
Virtual agents, intelligent automation, bots and conversational artificial intelligence will soon make the application support technician's role obsolete.The move to self-healing applications, artificial intelligence (AI), augmented, virtual and mixed realities and natural user interfaces will also contribute to making this role irrelevant.
(And younger employees who are much more technology-savvy than older workers don’t need application support desk help.)
6. Remote IT Maintenance Specialist
The role of the remote IT maintenance specialist is on its way out, especially at the edge. Because companies are putting more computing and storage at the edge of their networks, they don't have the money to spend on staff to install, manage and update hardware at small sites.
Ultimately, edge solutions will be managed by facilities managers, on-site retail store clerks or other non-technical workers.
Technology is constantly evolving — and that means the roles dealing with it are too.
As cloud computing and artificial intelligence become more and more ubiquitous within the enterprise, roles involving storage and repetitive tasks will be replaced by more strategy-focused jobs centered on scaling operations and keeping data safe.