Hackett blames offshoring, but what about cloud computing and automation? Hackett thinks the downsizing will stall within 10 years as company run out of jobs that can be offshored. But that leaves out the possibility that automation, from HP’s self-healing servers to deployment tools like Dell’s Crowbar, might render a large number of employees redundant.
Hackett claims that the jobs lost to efficiency will be offset by growth. I’m not so sure. Earlier we looked at Wolfgang Goerlich’s DevOps success story. Goerlich was able to cut his IT staff from 26 full time employees to nine. That’s just from virtualization and automation – Goerlich isn’t putting anything in the public cloud yet. That could make some workers worry that their jobs might be endangered if more automated tools are deployed in the enterprise. These days we’re putting more (synthetic) brains in the network stack and even manual labor like racking and stacking could soon be done by robots.
Of course there will still be jobs, probably even more jobs, for certain types of IT workers. Data scientists (including business intelligence specialists who can pick up data science techniques), developers (especially those who work on big data applications) and operations people who stay ahead of the curve (the people actually telling those automated systems what to do).
Can the growth generated by technology replace the jobs it displaces? Will automation put system administrators out on the street? Tell us what you think in the comments.
Photo by Leonardo Rizzi