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As we wrap up 2015, we have come across the most authoritative listings of the best IT skills that will have the highest job market demand in 2016. This list has been created by the freelance and contract online workplace Upwork, IT staffing and consulting firm Mondo and the education and training company Cybrary. The three companies arrived at this list based on the number of demand from their clients looking to hire IT experts for various tasks.

Top 10 Best IT Skills for 2016

UI/UX Designers/Developers

Whether a Software Company’s offering is an enterprise software, a video game or a shopping platform, consumers appreciate experiences that are quick, seamless and easy to use. For these reasons, companies are on the hunt for IT experts skilled in User Interface (UX/UI) designs, and the job market demand for such individuals is going to be even higher in 2016.

Anthony Gilbert, a technical recruiter at the IT staffing firm Mondo, says that the demand for UI/UX designers is going to be even higher come 2016.

Design can be a competitive advantage. If you’ve got a company that has great look-and-feel to their site, they’re easy to use and make things extremely simple for users, then they’re going to win out over a competitor who doesn’t have that same usability”, said Mateo Bueno,  a category director for Web and mobile development a freelance and contract marketplace Upwork.

Full-stack Web and Product Developers

A gorgeous UI is only as good as the software running behind it. Thus, the work of UI/UX developers goes hand in hand with the brilliance of full-stack web developers. The job market is particularly in high demand for web developers with skills in PHP, Python, Java, and JavaScript; they are sorted after to ensure that the backend of the software is secure and stable for the end users.

That is according to Robert Dickey, the group president of technology and engineering for IT consulting firm Randstad Technologies.

Dickey further said, “Software developers are our second-highest request from clients who are looking to continue innovating with their Web-based software and applications, especially with Web-enabled languages like JavaScript and Python.”

Network Engineers

Networking forms the foundation on which the web, streaming video, security, and collaboration are built. Professional network engineers will see their demand in the job market increase considerably in 2016.

Anthony Gilbert from Mondo says, “Our clients are still relying heavily on skilled networking professionals across all verticals to make sure they’re stable, always on and secure – we don’t see that going away.

Bueno from Upwork adds, “It’s about having cleaner pipelines. You can’t afford to have complicated, slow backend systems that will slow down video and other forms of interactive content. This isn’t as ‘sexy’ as a skill as those pros who are making sites beautiful, but it’s one of the largest subcategories we are seeing.”

Security/Cybersecurity Professionals

If the report tabled by the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) dubbed 2015 Cybersecurity Status report, is anything to go by. Then 8 percent of 3,436 business professionals surveyed in the research believe that there is a significant shortage of skilled cybersecurity

At the same time, it is estimated that there is over 300,000 cybersecurity vacancy in the US; this figure is expected to reach between 1 million to 1.5 million by the year 2020. Thus, it would be fair to say that when it comes to cybersecurity experts, there is a serious talent crisis. Come 2016 and beyond, cybersecurity professionals will be in high demand.

Trevor Halstead, is a product specialist, Talent Services, with online education and training provider Cybrary. Halstead says, “We are in a situation where the sector of technology with the greatest potential negative impact on our lives, businesses, governments, peace, safety, and security happens to have a severe deficiency of qualified people to fill its jobs.

This shortage added to the fact that recently there have been very serious security breaches at even well established multinational companies like Sony, Target, and others. Had sent companies scrambling in search of cyberseurity experts. Bueno from Upwork notes, “We’re seeing an uptick in clients hiring vulnerability testers and hackers to try and breach their systems, and to tell them how to improve their security posture.”

Mobile Engineers

Experts say that both Android and iOS mobile platform will become obsolete, but that is not about to happen anytime soon. So there remain a significantly high demand for mobile apps developers. It has also been observed that end users are using the mobile ecosystem than they use the traditional desktop PC ecosystem.

Upwork’s Bueno further adds that 2016 will see a growing demand for cross-platform mobile apps developers.

Bueno says, “If the development stack works really well across devices and across platforms, that’s going to be much more critical; we’re seeing greater demand for (full-stack Wed development framework) MEAN; MongoDB, Ember, Angular JS and node-JS for developing Web applications that allow for device agnosticism.”

Business Analysts

According to Gilbert from Mondo, Business Analysts play a significant role in marrying the strategies outlined by the Executives suites and the IT department works. Business Analysts ensure that the IT projects are in line with and meeting the strategic goals outlined by the company’s executives.

Gilbert says, “Companies are going to need someone who speaks both the language of business and the language of IT, and be able to translate between the two so that business requirements results in features and so that everyone understand what constrains IT is working against.”

IT Project Managers (Vertical Specific)

Randstad’s Dickey says, “Project managers are critical for our clients to see success with their IT projects. But a project manager who specializes in one industry, healthcare for example, is going to have the best chance of getting a new job in the same vertical. Our clients, at least, want IT PMs to have experience in the same industry; healthcare to healthcare, finance to finance, so they are aware of the unique issues each vertical faces”

Cloud architects/Integration

As cloud computing becomes more mainstream, many organization are setting up cloud infrastructure and adopting hybrid cloud System. IT personnel skilled in setting up, deploying security on cloud platforms and performing integration are going to see a rise in demand for their talents in 2016.

Dickey says, “So many of our clients are looking to continue cloud adoption, but with all the high-profile security breaches, they want to make sure it’s done correctly with skilled, experienced professionals.”

Data Scientists

As more and more companies turn to Big Data analysis to become more effective. They soon realize that the amount of data they are getting is too much; from the customer behavior data, user data, purchasing data, sales leads, and marketing data among others. Companies overwhelmed by the data overflow turn to professionals who can come up with solutions that capture, process, analyze and interpret data. This trend is expected to rise come 2016.

Bueno from Upwork says, “So many organizations are struggling to find the resources right now to capture, analyze, build data models, do regression analysis on all the data they’ve got streaming in. On top of that, they really need professionals who can take that data and interpret it into action items for the business.”

Content Management Systems

As more and more companies look to customizing their WordPress and Drupal sites, in addition to integrating them with e-commerce Content Management Systems (CMS) professionals are becoming highly sorted after.

Upwork’s Bueno says, “Until now, we were watching the competition between WordPress and Drupal, but it seems WordPress has come out as the dominant platform. That means developers with customization and integration skills on that platform are going to be in great demand.

Especially as businesses are looking to integrate their WordPress site with the WooCommerce, the free ecommerce toolkit from WordPress.

Even with turnkey solutions like WooCommerce, businesses are looking for a higher, more technical integration so they can do more complex, customized solutions that, for example, work with specific third-party APIs,” Bruno adds.

Source >> NetWork World

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