It almost goes without saying: Since the financial crisis of 2008, life hasn’t been easy for large segments of the population. With the economy struggling along, and the unemployment rate persistently under-performing, it’s hard not to feel bad for the average consumer. It’s a little cliché to say, but you can’t help but think the middle class is getting squeezed.
This might be a narrative you’ve heard before. But it bears repeating. While the stock market is up 150% from the March 2009 lows, individuals, households and particularly young adults are as indebted and encumbered as ever. Thankfully, it’s not all bad news.
That’s because there’s one segment of society that’s thriving. And if you asked them about a challenging or unforgiving labor market, they’d probably shake their head in confusion at you. Do you know who I’m talking about?
Technology Workers In High Demand:
All you have to do is look at the money being thrown around in Silicon Valley to see that the technology industry continues to hum along, seemingly without a care in the world. Facebook alone, has done over $20 Billion Dollars worth of acquisitions in the last couple of years.That’s hardly chump change.
But let’s go a step further than anecdotes. New research from Randstad, one of the world’s largest global recruiting and staffing firms, indicates that IT workers are increasingly confident about their job prospects and the economy. This probably doesn’t come as a surprise. But it still begs the question - why are things so good for those of us working in the world of technology?
Well, one way to infer the answer to this important question is to look at corporate earnings of the Fortune 500 over the last couple of years.
More specifically, if you break down top and bottom line earnings over the last couple of years, you’ll see that revenue among the Fortune 500 has been relatively flat. that means getting more sales has been tough. And so the earnings growth investors have seen has come from bottom line efficiencies.
And do you know what’s primarily responsible for bottom line efficiencies?
Well, if you’ve ever used a SaaS platform to improve your operations, you know the answer is technology. The decentralization driven by cloud computing, the automation of workflows and the mobile accessibility of information has multiplied the output and productivity of the average technology worker. You can’t ignore these changes. Like it or not, they’re having a profound impact on the economy.
The truth is, when you’re able to do so much in a day, (using software tools, custom-coded algorithms or web-based applications), it’s easy to show a high ROI. And when responsible management sees a healthy return, they continue to invest in that area. That’s why technology is snowballing.
It’s hard to believe at first. But if you’ve ever used a service like SalesForce.com you can quickly realize how technology is breaking down barriers and empowering those who know how to use it. With a small monthly subscription fee, one technology worker can now do the work of ten or more administrative staff. The scale is truly amazing.
And here’s the best part: If you’re not yet much of a technology worker, there’s good news for you too. That’s because the door of opportunity is always open. With the proliferation of internet connectivity and improved broadband access, it’s easier than ever to teach yourself how to use the tools of the future. Seriously.
Between the widespread adoption of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), free educational websites like Code Academy, and even mainstream sites like YouTube, it’s easier than ever to get up to speed on how you can empower yourself with technology and software.
And in fact, for those of you already working in the technology industry you need to keep learning too. You probably don’t need me to tell you; but, things are changing so fast you always want to be one step ahead.
Yet as long as this trend of ongoing technological evolution continues, there will always be a need for technology tools and talent in business. So embrace this reality. It’s how you really keep your technology career shining bright.