A family member of mine will soon graduate from college with a Business Information Technology degree. She's extremely talented, hard working, and creative, and would be a great asset to any company. OK, maybe I'm little biased, but it's all true! When she entered college, the prospects of a career in business technology, particularly with her specialty in E-business, were incredibly vibrant. Now, well, she's wondering how long it will take to find a job, much less the right job. Is she the victim of poor timing? Or someone who is trying to enter an industry whose rules have changed permanently?
The uncertainty has prompted her to think about new ways to become more relevant to the field she's interested in, which, in my opinion is exactly the right move. The current economic cycle should be a wake-up call to anyone in this business or hoping to be in this business. And while I realize (and sympathize for the many talented people who are struggling) that the current job market is tough, I'm disheartened when I hear people discourage today's students from pursuing a career in technology (there are several interviewed in this week's cover story, p. 26).
Four years ago, I was thrilled that my family member was pursuing a business-technology degree. Today I would still encourage her--or any other student--to make the same move. Yes, the rules have changed, but technology will be the most powerful factor in business innovation. Those who adopt the "but this isn't the way it used to be" attitude might as well turn their sights toward another professional industry that isn't experiencing change or doesn't need adaptive individuals. Good luck finding one.
The Business of Going DigitalDigital business isn't about changing code; it's about changing what legacy sales, distribution, customer service, and product groups do in the new digital age. It's about bringing big data analytics, mobile, social, marketing automation, cloud computing, and the app economy together to launch new products and services. We're seeing new titles in this digital revolution, new responsibilities, new business models, and major shifts in technology spending.