IT Brief Australia logo
Technology news for Australia's largest enterprises
Story image

The skills all aspiring IT professionals need in 2022

By Contributor
Tue 25 Jan 2022

Article by DDLS chief executive officer, Jon Lang.

Career progression is something never far from the mind of most IT professionals: will my current skills become obsolete? What skills will be in demand? What new technologies will emerge that will demand new skills? In short, what choices do I need to make for a successful and rewarding career?

Over the last two years, the IT industry's changing skill demands and the training and certification process to meet those demands has changed rapidly. This has left many IT professionals scrambling to gain new competencies. With 2022 set to be no less eventful, here's how IT skills and training will evolve over the next few years.

Soft skills will be just as important as technical skills

The world is changing fast: new technologies emerge, and current ones become obsolete in the blink of an eye. In this environment, it's not only specific technical competencies that are important: soft skills are also in higher demand.

By 2025, we will see complex problem-solving, critical thinking, creativity, people management, and emotional intelligence become some of the most important skills required in the workplace – arguably just as crucial as technical competencies.

This trend has been underway for a few years already. Back in 2016, the World Economic Forum predicted, "Five years from now, over one-third of skills that are considered important in today's workforce will have changed." 

Today's skills insufficient to meet tomorrow's demands

In a world where skills requirements are changing fast, combined with a severe shortage of IT professionals in some areas, we will see HR and learning development professionals prioritise upskilling and reskilling for their existing staff in 2022. They know they can't simply hire their way out of the problem (as the talent pool is so thin in certain areas).

A 2021 report by LinkedIn found upskilling and reskilling to be the number one focus in 59 per cent of organisations' learning programs, a 15 per cent increase in just 12 months.

Certification is the name of the game

The acquisition of skills is one thing. Verification of those skills (i.e. certification) is another, and Australia has lagged behind the rest of the world in this regard. However, that has begun to change over the last couple of years, and one could expect that trend to accelerate in 2022.

Organisations will increasingly recognise the significance and need for certified professionals, and there are several reasons for this. Technology vendors (for example, Microsoft, AWS and Google) now offer highly-specific certifications, ensuring competency in a range of their programs.

If an organisation relies on certain programs from a specific vendor to complete day-to-day activities, having certified employees using these programs is a huge advantage. These employees are able to hit the ground running. Therefore, they are more attractive to hiring managers, as they ensure competency in the most relevant skills an organisation needs, no matter how specific or unique.

Furthermore, when an organisation employs certified individuals who inherently have a higher level of competency than non-certified individuals, they don't want to go back! This is because certified individuals create a higher skills benchmark in any organisation.

Additionally, pandemic-enforced isolation made the process of gaining certification much easier. People no longer need to book an exam at a testing centre; many exams can be self-proctored (no separate, independent oversight).

Hybrid workforce demanding new skills

A large portion of the workforce will continue to work remotely in 2022. This means both general and vendor-specific skills in cloud computing will continue to be in very high demand, as organisations rely heavily on the cloud to facilitate collaboration. Also, with a decentralised working environment, IT Service Management will become even more crucial – so it's no coincidence that certifications in this area will remain in extremely high demand.

As another consequence of the rapid transition to the cloud, there has never been a higher level of cyber risk than right now. With many organisations hastily introducing new cloud programs at the start of the pandemic, we have been left with insecure cloud environments and a lack of skilled cloud security professionals who understand how to manage these complex, risk-laden environments.

Many organisations don't know how many places their sensitive data is stored in and potentially exposed, making easy pickings for threat actors. So, we will see demand for cloud security training grow immensely in 2022. We will also see greater demand for generic cybersecurity training for all staff, as human error remains a major contributor to data breaches.

Go beyond personalised learning

On-demand exams are just one education trend I see coming to the fore in 2022; hyper-personalisation is another.

We will see learning become increasingly customised for each individual via artificial intelligence. Over the next few years, IT professionals will be able to craft a learning journey based on their specific goals and interests, leading to greater engagement and better learning outcomes.

The benefits of personalisation are well-recognised. Back in 2018, a report from learning technology company Saba found personalisation resulted in positive impacts for both learners and businesses, with strong links between personalisation and improved performance.

In 2022 and beyond, the prospects for established and aspiring IT professionals look good. The certification process has never been easier (successfully passing one is as challenging as ever!), and certifications are increasingly sought after.

IT professionals who couple development of technical competence with a focus on their soft skills and their "emotional intelligence", will do very well in a sector still plagued by skills shortages.

Article by DDLS chief executive officer, Jon Lang.

Related stories
Top stories
Story image
Employment
Tech job moves - Forcepoint, Malwarebytes, SolarWinds & VMware
We round up all job appointments from May 13-20, 2022, in one place to keep you updated with the latest from across the tech industries.
Story image
Migration
Let’s clear the cloud visibility haze with app awareness
Increasingly, organisations are heading for the cloud, initiating new born-in-the-cloud architectures and migrating existing applications via ‘lift and shift’ or refactoring.
Story image
Remote Working
Successful digital transformation in the hybrid work era is about embracing shifting goalposts
As organisations embraced remote working, many discovered they lacked the infrastructure needed to support history’s first global load test of remote work capabilities.
Story image
Vectra AI
Understanding the weight on security leader’s shoulders, and how to shift it
Millions of dollars of government funding and internal budgets are being funnelled into cybersecurity to build resilience against sophisticated threats, indicating how serious this issue has become.
Story image
Lightspeed
Lightspeed launches all-in-one marketing platform in A/NZ
ECommerce provider, Lightspeed has launched a new all-in-one marketing solution, Lightspeed Marketing & Loyalty in Australia and New Zealand.
Story image
Digital Transformation
Pluralsight and Ingram Micro Cloud team up on cloud initiative
Pluralsight has teamed with Ingram Micro Cloud to build upon cloud competence and maturity internally, and externally support partners’ capabilities.
Story image
Cloud Security
Aqua Security createa unified scanner for cloud native security
“By integrating more cloud native scanning targets into Trivy, such as Kubernetes, we are simplifying cloud native security."
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
SAS announces new products amid cloud portfolio success
Analytics and AI company SAS is deepening its broad industry portfolio with offerings that support life sciences, energy, and martech.
Story image
Digital Transformation
How to modernise legacy apps without compromising security
At a time when digital transformation has become central to business, even the most important applications come with a ‘use-by’ date.
Exabeam
Find out how a behavioural analytics-driven approach can transform security operations with the new Exabeam commissioned Forrester study.
Link image
Story image
Remote Working
Australia’s remote workers face connectivity and security issues
SOTI's new report finds better video conferencing technology and improved security measures are top concerns for remote workers in Australia.
Story image
Customer experience
Research unveils precarious customer loyalty for retailers
New research has found customers are reassessing established brand loyalties as their priorities and behaviours shift.
Story image
Sift
Sift shares crucial advice for preventing serious ATO breaches
Are you or your business struggling with Account Takeover Fraud (ATO)? One of the latest ebooks from Sift can provide readers with the tools and expertise to help launch them into the new era of account security.
Story image
ChildFund
ChildFund launches new campaign to protect children online
ChildFund says WEB Safe & Wise aims to protect children from sexual exploitation and abuse online while also empowering them to become digitally savvy. 
Story image
Malware
New vulnerabilities found in Nuspire’s Q1 2022 Threat Report
“Threat actors are quickly adjusting their tactics and these exploits tend to get industry attention, but the threat posed by older and attacks still persists."
Story image
Data solutions
South Australia state satellite makes significant progress
South Australia’s first state satellite has successfully completed the Critical Design Review (CDR), moving it closer to providing tangible data solutions.
Story image
trust
9/10 Aussies to stop spending if personal data compromised
"Based on the patterns we are seeing among Australian consumers, it is evident that trust in a brand is exceptionally important."
Story image
Sustainability
Grasping the opportunity to rethink the metrics of a sustainable data centre
A data centre traditionally has two distinct operations teams: the Facility Operations team, and the IT Operations team. Collaboration between them is the key to defining, measuring, and delivering long-term efficiency and sustainability improvements.
Story image
CRM
Zendesk announces new conversational CRM solutions
“The last few years have made it obvious that digital is the front door, convenience is paramount and relationships are anchored in conversations."
Story image
Attain
Revenue operations is taking centre stage
As the business world continues to evolve, new demands need to be met to keep up with the ever-changing landscape. 
Story image
Apple
Apple previews new features for users with disabilities
Apple says new software features that offer users with disabilities new tools for navigation, health and communication, are set to come out later this year.
Story image
Application Security
What are the DDoS attack trend predictions for 2022?
Mitigation and recovery are vital to ensuring brand reputation remains solid in the face of a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack and that business growth and innovation can continue.
Story image
Qualys
Qualys updates Cloud Platform solution with rapid remediation
The new update is designed to enable organisations to fix asset misconfigurations, patch OS and third-party applications, and deploy custom software.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Infoblox's State of Security Report spotlights Australian remote work hazards
Attackers exploit weak WiFi, remote endpoints, and the cloud, costing 50% of organisations over $1.3 million in breach damages.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
How to ensure ethical deployment of AI implementations
The increase in automation and machine technology such as AI and machine learning has unlocked a whole new level of scale and service to organisations. 
Story image
Excel
Could your Excel practices be harming your business?
While Excel has been the de-facto standard for budgeting, planning, and forecasting, is it alone, enough to support organisations in the global marketplace that’s facing rapid changes due to digital transformation?
Story image
SaaS
Rubrik Security Cloud marks 'next frontier' in cybersecurity
"The next frontier in cybersecurity pairs the investments in infrastructure security with data security giving companies security from the point of data."
Story image
Cybersecurity
A10 Networks finds over 15 million DDoS weapons in 2021
A10 Networks notes that in the 2H 2021 reporting period, its security research team tracked more than 15.4 million Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) weapons.
Story image
Ransomware
Alarming surge in Conti Ransomware Group activity - report
A new report has identified a 7.6 per cent increase in the number of vulnerabilities tied to ransomware in Q1 2022.
Story image
Infrastructure
Nutanix study reveals financial services sector lagging with multicloud adoption
Nutanix has released new research that reveals the financial services sector is lagging behind when it comes to multicloud adoption.
Story image
Data Center
Preventing downtime costs and damage with Distributed Infrastructure Management
Distributed Infrastructure Management (DIM) can often be a lifeline for many enterprises that work with highly critical ICT infrastructure and power sources.
Story image
Digital Transformation
Trading up: It's time to swap core systems for flexible digital applications
This year will see more oranisations planning and commencing high tech renovations that will shake up the way they operate.
Story image
Manufacturing
HINDSITE wins Aerospace Xelerated Pitch Challenge with solution to support Boeing
Brisbane-based startup HINDSITE was the winner of the first ever Pitch Challenge organised by Aerospace Xelerated in partnership with Queensland XR Hub. 
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
CFOs using digital workers and AI to prevent unnecessary loss
New technology is now allowing CFOs to use digital workers to automate their accounting processes, making it easier for them to avoid unnecessary losses.
Story image
Sustainability
Power at the edge: the role of data centers in sustainability
The Singaporean moratorium on new data center projects was recently lifted, with one of the conditions being an increased focus on power efficiency and sustainability.
Story image
Customer experience
Gartner recognises Okta for abilities in Access Management
Okta has announced it has been recognised as a Customers' Choice for the fourth time in a row in the Gartner Peer Insights "Voice of the Customer" report.
Darktrace
Threat actors are exploiting weaknesses in interconnected IT/OT ecosystems. Darktrace illuminates your entire business and takes targeted action to stop emerging attacks.
Link image
Story image
Data Protection
Barracuda launches new capabilities for API Protection
"Every business needs this type of critical protection against API vulnerabilities and automated bot attacks," Barracuda says.
Story image
Amazon Web Services / AWS
RedShield leverages AWS to scale cybersecurity services
"Working with AWS gives RedShield the ability to mitigate significant application layer DDoS attacks, helping leaders adopt best practices and security architectures."
Story image
Ransomware
Cybersecurity starts with education
In 2021, 80% of Australian organisations responding to the Sophos State of Ransomware study reported being hit by ransomware. 
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
AI-based email security platform Abnormal Security valued at $4B
"A new breed of cybersecurity solutions that leverage AI is required to change the game and stop the rising threat of sophisticated and targeted email attacks."
Story image
Workato
Workato unveils enhancements to enterprise automation platform
"The extra layer of protection with EKM, zero-logging, and hourly key rotation gives customers a lot more visibility and control over more sensitive data."
Softiron
For every 10PB of storage run on HyperDrive vs. comparable alternatives, an estimated 6,656 tonnes of CO₂ are saved by reduced energy consumption alone over its lifespan. That’s the equivalent of taking nearly 1,500 cars off the road for a year.
Link image
Story image
Nozomi Networks
Nozomi Networks, Siemens reveal software integration
Nozomi Networks and Siemens have extended their partnership by embedding Nozomi Networks’ software into the Siemens Scalance LPE local processing engine.