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IT Skills: What’s Hot and What’s Not

I read two articles on IT skills in Network World: “Top 10 Technology Skills” and “5 IT skills that won’t boost your salary”

The 5 IT Skills that are declining included: HTML, NetWare, PC Tech support, legacy languages like Cobol, and Non IP like SNA. No surprise here! Why not put Token Ring on the list and in depth experience with the Intel 8086 processor? The list could go on for pages of legacy technology. The challenge for some businesses hanging on to legacy technology is finding someone who can actually support their systems.

The “Top 10 Technology Skills” is a good indication of the state of the industry and where it is going. The list starts with business process modeling as being number one and this explains why you see many businesses getting certifications like CMMI, ISO 9000, and ITIL. The rest of the list is: database, message/ communications, IT Architecture, IT security, project management, data mining, web development (Web 2.0), IT optimization, and networking. The article goes into detail on each.

Missing is virtualization and the soft skills around business IT alignment. Personally, I believe that the ability to translate the business requirements into IT plans and priorities is the number one skill. When you read CIO books and articles this is generally the challenge discussed. Otherwise, the list is accurate and in line with the challenges of IT leaders.

How can an IT Professional use this information?

First select the skills in the list that fit your background and study and research to develop and grow. Once you have developed the skills, take the appropriate certification exams like PMP, ITIL, MCITP (MCSE), CCIE, CISSP.

Now that you have developed your skills and certified you are done – right? No! You chose to be an IT professional and this industry is constantly changing so you need to continue to read the latest information, take update classes and courses on the new technology as it comes out and re-certify.

If you can maintain the passion for the technology – You will love it!

Network World – Top 10 Technology Skills http://www.networkworld.com/news/2009/040609-10-tech-skills.html?tc=car

Network World – 5 IT skills that won’t boost your salary http://www.networkworld.com/news/2008/041708-careers-sidebar.html?page=1