Infrastructure Blog

New Job Roles in the Age of Cloud and Big Data

By: Linda Tsan

Product Marketing Manager

Not so long ago, the net worth of many large enterprises derived from their physical assets. Today, the source of an organization’s value is its data. 

Data, when captured and analyzed efficiently, can rapidly drive innovation and product development. Products and services can be developed quickly to meet very specific customer needs, discovered. Cost savings can be achieved through sophisticated modeling. The potential for increasing revenue and decreasing costs through the use of data is vast.

Big Data Is Transforming the Workforce

We are in the middle of an unprecedented digital transformation toward the cloud, fed in part by the need to store and analyze data. Now that data is the single largest asset of many companies, professionally managing it is vital for building an organization’s value.
According to CompTIA, the overall growth in IT employment can be attributed to technology trends such as big data and cloud, among others. This job creation and the genesis of new job roles indicates that companies recognize data’s role in remaining competitive in today’s business environment.
Forward-thinking enterprises are making sure that leaders throughout the organization have an understanding of the value of big data—and how to manage it. This starts with the IT function, and spreads across all mission-critical business functions.

Big Data Is Changing the Way the Executive Suite Thinks

The Evolving Role of the Chief Data Officer
As the value of an organization’s data grows and becomes better understood, securing that data becomes as much a financial imperative as a technical one. Not only should the chief data officer (CDO) be responsible for protecting data and ensuring regulatory compliance, but, according to Oracle’s Big Data Strategist in his latest research collaboration with MIT, Paul Sondregger, “The Chief Data Officer (CDO) should be on par with the CFO, making sure data capital is as productive as it can be while staying within the bounds of proper use.”

The CFO as a Big Data Champion

With the growing application of artificial intelligence (AI) and process automation, in just a few short years the function of the finance organization within enterprises will look different than it does now. Complex legacy systems will wane, replaced by cloud-based platforms for reporting, planning, forecasting, and analytics that will deliver self-service data to decision-makers across the enterprise. This will free finance teams from repetitive tasks with low value, and will allow them to spend their time on decision support and predictive analysis, enabled by big data. New roles will be created in finance, and job candidates will be screened for their technical skills and understanding of how data in general can benefit the company.

Mining Big Data for Recruiting
Chief Human Resources Officers are looking to data to increase the speed and efficiency of finding suitable recruits, especially for C-level roles. HR organizations have compiled large amounts of data over time, and have the ability to mine massive external data sources. The challenge is being able to analyze all of this data to discover traits that identify candidates that are likely to be successful C-level leaders. By analyzing these types of traits, specific profiles can be created for C-level roles and cross-referenced with personal experience discovered by mining data from various sources to quickly find qualified candidates. 

Big Data Demands New Job Skills

The trend of reducing the number of jobs that perform low-value functions will continue affecting entire organizations, not just finance. As big data becomes core to each business function, employees will need the skills to analyze and derive insights from data. For example:

  • Marketing: Technical marketing operations roles will be required to capture customer interactions and analyze data for more targeted and effective ad campaigns.
  • Product Development: Insights from data will be analyzed by teams to uncover customer needs and create new products and services that address them.
  • HR: Through human capital management platforms, HR professionals will use data to refine and even automate recruiting, onboarding, development, and retention efforts.
  • Supply Chain: Big data analysts will create sophisticated models to not only increase efficiency and reduce costs, but also to predict and even shape demand.
  • Sales: Sales analysts will use algorithms to determine which prospects and existing customers are most likely to purchase products and services.
  • Legal: Legal experts will be expected to find evidence for cases and to assure compliance with policies and procedures.

IT Job Roles Are Changing Dramatically

With so much data being created and analyzed throughout organizations, and the shift to cloud-based data storage infrastructures to support these capabilities, new IT jobs are emerging:

  • Enterprise cloud migration: Experienced professionals will be needed to migrate data from legacy on-premises systems into cloud applications as markets begin to pivot more heavily to the cloud. 
  • Integration architecture: These visionaries will create the overarching system architectures that bridge legacy systems and new cloud systems to support the exponential growth of data that will be created year after year.
  • Cloud security: Engineers skilled at addressing cloud-specific requirements for keeping data secure at all levels will be crucial for enterprises to maintain their competitive edge.
  • Container support: Developers and engineers alike will be expanding their skillset to support virtual machines to run apps in a flexible, containerized cloud architecture. In fact, the Oracle Container Cloud Service provides an easy and quick way to create an enterprise-grade container infrastructure for container-based applications.
  • Cloud enterprise application development: A new breed of IT professionals is emerging to accelerate application development and testing in the enterprise space. Creating something like a distributed testing for application lifecycle management is tricky when you put it in the context of industry regulations, SLAs, customer base size, and other nuances that differentiate enterprises from more nimble startups. 
  • Site reliability engineers: Delivering “always-on” reliability of mission-critical applications is, again, incredibly tricky in the enterprise space. I covered this in more detail in my last post about how Oracle MiniCluster’s database automation features help support a DevOps model for SREs.
  • DevOps engineers: Speaking of DevOps, there are now specific roles serving as liaisons between operations and development to enable effective communication and cooperation between these two groups so idea can flow freely and hit the market sooner. The exponential growth of software developers means faster innovation, but unless those ideas comply with rules that operations has laid down, there will be a bottleneck.

Future-Proof Your Company—and Your Career

By rethinking job roles across the entire enterprise, businesses are driving innovation, product development, revenue generation, and cost reduction. However, big data brings opportunities not just for organizations, but for employees, too. The career paths of employees in all roles—even non-technical roles—will need to understand how to use these type of insights.
Having the right IT infrastructure is crucial for organizations to make sense of this kind of data. Oracle Engineered Systems is optimized specifically for the database and all data that flows through it so you can better capture, analyze, transform, and monetize the information you have at your fingertips. In this sense, knowledge is not only power, it translates directly to revenue.

Learn more about cloud-ready infrastructure here.

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