Modern technology has grown by leaps and bounds since the invention of the transistor which led to the Age of Information. This era, however, is not the first to undergo major technological change. Inventions throughout history made humans innovate and adapt to new technologies. Along with each innovation, there will always be the fear that machines will someday replace humans.
The concern about machines replacing humans has been present since Aristotle’s time. In the 1930s, economist John Maynard Keynes coined the phrase, ‘technological unemployment’ to describe the temporary loss of jobs that resulted from technological advances. Today, it is estimated that 90% of jobs humans used to do have been taken over by technology.
That may be true, but 140 years of data show that technology has created more jobs than it destroyed. New technology leads to new industries and jobs, from the invention of the wheel to the invention of the printing press to the invention of weaving machines.
Since the Industrial Revolution, we have gone through many technological innovations. Now, with the rise of Artificial Intelligence (AI), robotics, and automation, would ‘technological unemployment’ happen?
Technology, Creator Of Jobs
As history has repeatedly shown us, technology in the long run is a net creator of jobs. The Age of Information has created new opportunities, new industries, and new jobs. And if figures are to be believed, the tech industry is not slowing down anytime soon.
Demand for IT workers is growing and would likely continue to grow; according to the law of supply and demand, if something high in demand is in short supply, its value increases. Figures from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics show that demand for IT professionals is estimated to grow by at least 24% by the year 2026.
And with the demand for workers increasing, the average annual salary also increases. Statistics compiled by the bureau from 2016 show that job openings in this field have been growing by an average of more than 300,000 yearly.
We have reached a point in our society where technology runs almost every aspect of people’s lives. The devices that we can’t seem to go without, the smartphones, tablets, personal computers, smart speakers, and other types of tech, are all run by software. The prodigious speed with which technology expands means more hands are needed to be in keyboards, crafting codes to drive this technology.
As automation seems to be where most companies are going as a new manufacturing method, the creation of new areas in software is inevitable. New industries can only hope to match the pace of technology’s growth. The future may sound exciting, but something has to run it. Technology demands coders are there to ensure the tech runs smoothly and without a glitch.
Startups And More Startups
Venture capitalists have invested billions of dollars into tech startups over the years. And why not? Tech firms have remarkably low failure rates compared to other industries. Furthermore, the possibility of making a significant return is higher if the startup succeeds. Tech hubs like Silicon Valley and Seattle in the US are breeding grounds and have thousands of jobs available for IT workers. In Australia, companies like IT Consulting Brisbane are well established to support IT infrastructure projects.
The startup revolution isn’t just happening in the US.
And it isn’t limited to the US. Tech startups are sprouting everywhere, with ‘disruptive technology’ driving the next technological revolution.
Ecommerce in the US is projected to grow to more than USD600 billion annually by 2022. While giants like Amazon corner about half of all online sales on a typical day, the other half goes to smaller eCommerce sites. And this is made possible by software written by IT pros.
Besides marketplace software solutions and the shopping cart, developers also create different applications and integrations for these services. Hosted in the app stores of marketplace service providers, these add-ons represent one of the fastest-growing areas of the software industry.
The Dedicated Few
As everyone knows by now, computer software developers belong to a specialized field. Acquiring the skills to write software takes exacting discipline and focus. IT professionals also have to stay abreast of dynamic coding platforms that continually evolve. Programming languages evolve, new ones are made, old ones are revised; as a result, vacancies are quickly made, positions are created—all demanding to be filled right now.
For example, in 2017, Microsoft announced the release of a new programming language called Q#. This computer language is created to run the coming quantum supercomputers. Of course, not many people have learned this brand-new computer language yet. For sure, this will open a new field in software development. What’s more, since 2017, many computer languages have also been created, which will result in continuous demand for more software developers.
As companies vie for success in an increasingly responsive global environment, IT professionals are assigned to more crucial and critical responsibilities, like using data to identify new market segments and create a more efficient and streamlined operation. With every successful use of IT to meet business challenges, companies are becoming more reliant on IT. The demand for IT professionals will continuously increase.