Seven predictions for this year from two CTOs

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Seven predictions for this year from two CTOs

Rod Cope and Deepak Giridharagopal, CTOs of Perforce, share their top technology-related predictions for this year and beyond. Their predictions cover various areas, but looking at the market from the perspective of Puppet (by Perforce), there are two clear themes: one, maximising and looking after available talent, and two, focusing on technology that delivers (rather than being distracted by the hype).

ONE: Nurturing existing workforces

Even when skilled IT workers are available, they may not have the level of skills an organisation would traditionally have expected, and the volatility of the job market will lead companies to lose money without the necessary talent. Consequently, the emphasis is leaning towards growing talent internally, including mentoring and training existing employees, and focusing on their career progression. Furthermore, automation will continue to accelerate, removing 'toil work' and helping to maintain efficiency (even with limited human resources), while helping people focus on more motivational and career-enhancing activities.

TWO: People-first approaches

In addition, ways to attract or retain talent might include investing in people's home-working environments, mental health days, better healthcare policies, flexible hours and shorter work weeks. And, if talented individuals can pick and choose their roles, then factors such as employers' ESG and equality goals will also play an increasing role in job choices.

THREE: Talent business models reevaluated

Since anyone can now work anywhere, many IT workers choose to be employed by companies that support -working. While many firms no longer need to rely on the availability of local resources, there are also massive financial implications for those who have invested in expensive physical workspaces containing staff incentives. Plus, the 'work anywhere' culture is leading to a flattening of salaries across world regions.

FOUR: The flight from technical complexity

The lack of skilled talent makes building and maintaining complicated digital cathedrals even harder. Organisations' ambitious technical initiatives may be technologically sound but ultimately can be hamstrung due to the lack of people with the necessary skills, bring the ROI of projects into sharper focus. Instead, the safety and reliability of simplifiedproven architectural and technical choices may prove a wiser decision in the current environment. And, as companies refocus on what will actuallydeliver results, there will be a continued shift away from 'the new shiny' (such as Crypto, Web 3 and NFTs).

FIVE: Platform engineering teams to the fore

During 2022, there was increasing talk about platform engineering, a trend set to continue growing, particularly to support DevOps at scale. Platform engineering teams can be loosely-defined as delivering shared infrastructure platforms and continuously developing, maintaining, and supporting underlying infrastructure. While in some respects a rebranding of the infrastructure teams that have been around for decades, platform engineering also reflects and recognises the central and essential role of these teams.

SIX: Software energy efficiency will be measured

The global energy crisis will bring more focus on software power consumption. Already, Gartner predicts that, without sustainable AI practices, AI will consume more energy than the entire human workforce by 2025 Until fusion power and other types of energy become mainstream, power consumption will be as important as other factors, for example speed. 

SEVEN: Security is an IT issue
As security concerns grow, will be more emphasis on IT infrastructure automation to protect organisations. Unless fundamental requirements such as drift remediation, configuration management, and patch management are addressed promptly and efficiently, CSOs' security strategies are undermined. Conversely, IT infrastructure automation can contribute significantly to enterprise security and continuous compliance, even when IT skill is in short supply, because — when executed well — it can reduce the security burden on IT teams. 

As we all prepare for the year ahead, there are multiple challenges ahead, but at the same time, there are also opportunities for organisations of all kinds to reevaluate their existing approaches and processes, often for the better ultimately. That we live in changing times is non-negotiable, but we can choose how we adapt, and that applies as much to IT as any other aspect of our survival.