Why techies will rule the earthSeptember 2020
There is no industry left in the world that hasn’t been affected by the relentless march of technology. Whatever your need, whatever your problem, there’s an app for that. From trucking to hotelling, and groceries to gaming, industries that remained constant for hundreds of years have suddenly been grabbed by the scruff of the neck, shaken up, turned upside down, and transformed seemingly overnight.
Thanks to new apps and programs we hardly need to leave our homes any more. Fresh produce that once required a trip to the grocery store now magically appears on your doorstep. Booking holidays, ordering takeaways, meeting with colleagues, socialising – dating even – can all take place online.
With all of this innovation, companies are keen to keep up with the competition and be the first to implement new technology. And that means non-tech companies are hiring more and more tech staff.
"Companies are keen to keep up with the competition and be the first to implement new technology. That means non-tech companies are hiring more tech staff"
Hospitality: Now everyone’s a hotelier
The hotel industry, you might think, is one that’s resistant to change because it relies on bricks and mortar. But that didn’t stop Airbnb and VRBO from up-ending it. These companies swooped in and shook up the hospitality landscape by allowing homeowners to rent out their sofas, flats and spare bedrooms, earning a passive income and giving travellers a whole new world of accommodation options. The idea of ‘living like a native’ rather than a tourist proved extremely popular and the sector will never be the same again.
Who made this change possible? Tech workers. Now when you plan a trip, the first thing you do is pick up your mobile and look for a unique apartment or home to stay at. The app that you’re using was created and maintained by mobile developers.
"Even non-EV cars are getting overhauls as displays and consoles become more technical. So there’s a lot of work around for software engineers"
Automotive: Cars driven by software
Elon Musk, the founder of Tesla, had a vision of making a completely electric car in the US. It was a bold vision at the time but, as one of the most successful stocks of 2020 and with thousands of vehicles on the road, it seems to be a major success and most big car companies are now scrambling to catch up in the electric vehicle (EV) game.
EVs have many moving parts, just like their combustion engine counterparts, but there’s plenty of space for innovation. A lot of these innovations will be technological and will need software to be implemented properly. Even non-EV cars are getting overhauls as consoles and displays become more technical. This means there’s a lot of work around for software engineers, who create, develop and test the programs to make sure they’re operating correctly.
Television: The new business of show-business
For younger generations, the go-to television experience is no longer the DVD player or cable channels. It’s content exclusively available on the internet. Netflix and YouTube have changed not only how we access visual media but also the format, with shows able to be released all at once and no longer restricted to specific time slots. A bold new player in the field is Quibi (whose success remains to be seen), a mobile-only platform with all content under 10 minutes.
These companies employ teams of fullstack developers to maintain, build, and update the coding that makes these sites function.
"The e-commerce sector needs armies of skilled tech workers to implement tools that keep customers coming back for more"
Commerce: Shopping trips from the sofa
Online shopping isn’t new, but the tools that improve the customer experience are becoming more plentiful and more sophisticated all the time. Can’t decide which paint colour? Now you can virtually paint your walls to see how it looks. Want to see how that chair will look in your living room? Now you can.
It’s not only the Amazons of this world that are constantly looking for innovative ways to make online shopping seamless. It’s any company or brand that needs to sell online – which is, pretty much, any retail brand. And the e-commerce sector needs armies of skilled tech workers to create and implement these tools and keep customers coming back for more.
"Companies need tech workers right now, not in three or four years’ time when you’ve graduated"
Skilling up for the jobs of the future
As more “non-tech” industries implement tech innovations, more companies are going to need employees who can code. Getting a degree in computer science isn’t the only way to gain these skills. In fact, companies need tech workers right now, not in three or four years’ time when you’ve graduated.
Coding bootcamps have stepped in to meet this demand, offering courses that focus on applying technical skills so students are job-ready in as little as three to six months.
The disruption of traditional industries isn’t going to stop any time soon. As tech continues to develop, entrepreneurs will continue to find more uses for it. We might still go to physical stores to buy our groceries, but who or what bags our groceries might change. And it’s tech workers who will be behind that change.
Artur Meyster, Founder and CTO of CareerKarma