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A new skill that will be in big demand will be the data scientist, or people who are trained to gain business value from all the data they collect.
There is a severe shortage of IT personnel with the ability to do the business intelligence functions related to big data. The McKinsey Global Institute estimated that by 2018 the U.S. will need 440,000 to 490,000 people with deep analytical training.
Mark Teter, CTO of Advanced Systems Group, a Denver-based solution provider, said IT organizations will have to decide whether or not to take on the role of business analytics for their companies.
"If they don't, the business units will take the job," he said. "The data scientist is a whole new role we are not seeing much of today. They will provide the performance needed to run many future applications."
Teter said other titles to look for in the future include cloud architect, operational performance manager, operational readiness director, and operational administrator. "Operational administrators are like 'drone pilots,'" he said. "They just sit there and fly the machines through the business processes."
As IT organizations and businesses evolve, solution providers will have to become less like a grocery store and more like a food connoisseur, said Roberto Basilio, vice president of storage product management at HDS.
"They will need to see the value of what they bring to the market and move to being a provider of the best infrastructure," Basilio said. "The ones that emerge successfully will have the ability to select the right components and implement them in the best way for customers."
New sales skills also will be needed to match the coming changes in the storage industry.
For instance, selling a storage cloud is not the same as selling a storage array, said Dave Cerniglia, president of Consiliant Technologies, an Irvine, Calif.-based solution provider.
"For solution providers, being able to leverage recurring models is very attractive," Cerniglia said. "You go out, evangelize, fight the battle, but if you win, the customer next year will sign up again. You won't have to fight that battle again."