Skills for the Enterprise Technology World

By John Burke
On Nov 14, 2012
Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Nemertes has been tracking the emergence of the next evolution of information technology use and organization within the enterprise. Just as MIS evolved into and was superseded by IT, we see Enterprise Technology (ET) emerging to supersede traditional IT. Where MIS focused on the back office and evolved into IT to address the needs of office staff and the knowledge worker, so IT is evolving into ET as it grows to encompass not just back-office, knowledge, and task (front-office) work, but also field and floor work that previously was not technology-supported, and the creation of the intelligent and instrumented environment. ET, naturally, demands some skills that IT already has, and also some that IT tends to undervalue.

One ET skill that is increasingly important is the ability to speak with line-of-business folks in business-focused language, and to interpret their needs and translate them into technology requirements. Sure, IT departments know they need this skill set and many deploy business analysts or business-technology liaisons to be bridges to the rest of the organization. However, the ET organization is going to be tipping ever more heavily towards needing this skill set across most positions. Over time fewer and fewer technologists will be isolated from the rest of the business, especially as broader and more flexible use of hosted, managed, and cloud services makes it possible to get ever more done without the deep technical expertise that has been required in the past. (Of course, it shifts that burden to the service providers!)

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