We all know how much corporate technology is changing. But are job roles changing as well?
For years, the job categories found in IT departments have pretty much followed the same script: There are CIOs or vice presidents in charge of entire departments, who oversee project, development and operations managers, who in turn manage the activities of developers, programmers and administrators. These folks work alongside strategists, architects and analysts.
"These roles worked when application development didn't need to adapt so quickly to the pace of digital technology," write Paul Daugherty and Bhaskar Ghosh in a new report out of Accenture. Things are different now, however, and job roles need to evolve with these changes.
Here are the four new job categories that Daugherty and Ghosh see as dominating IT departments going forward:
Platform director: Today's solutions -- and businesses for that matter -- are built around platforms, allowing for the adding or removal of modular components. "Such platforms require the new role of platform director: someone responsible for designing and executing those abstraction strategies and then managing the work on that platform," Daugherty and Ghosh state. Platform directors also oversee API management, and act as a bridge between the business and technology departments. In addition, this role is outward-facing. "When a company creates an open, online platform, a platform director would act almost like a product manager: someone who understands the needs of both customers and partners," they add.
Citizen developer: With open platforms and front-end tools, business users are getting into the act and building their own apps and interfaces. "Everyone (potentially) is a citizen developer, and they can be inside or outside of a company," Daugherty and Ghosh state. This is a help -- not a threat -- to IT, since end users have the ability to rapidly build and deploy the front ends they need when they need them, leaving IT departments to focus on the big stuff: security, resiliency, and infrastructure. It's also the ultimate expression of agile development, with "a significantly shorter development cycle in which applications are no longer built and maintained in separate phases."
Ecosystem builder: This fancy job description springs from the rise of open collaboration between enterprises and supply-chain partners. "Ecosystem builders are in charge of facilitating and coordinating all of these relationships and identifying new business opportunities," Daugherty and Ghosh explain. "They focus on optimizing the makeup and performance of the broader set of partners and developers--including citizen developers--so that everyone is empowered to work together."
Intelligence architect: This new role ties into the big data phenomenon. The intelligence architect will help enterprises "embed software intelligence everywhere in their applications and processes to manage growing volume, velocity and complexity, and to maximize the business value of internal and external data, including that from the physical world," Daugherty and Ghosh state. They will "work with enterprise architects to create the information strategy, and then monitor application development in light of the intelligent architecture."