Experts have made a case for technology careers, especially among youths in Nigeria, stating that technology has the potential to unveil the ingenuity in any person as long as the will is there.
They made this known at the recently held technology development and career webinar, organised by talent development platform, Bincom Dev Center, with the theme: “If not Tech, then what? Speakers spoke on the industrial revolution currently taking place across the world and how technological skills such as engineering, robotics; programming and similar skills are required to power this revolution.
They claimed that the resulting economy, the big-tech economy, will feature a world where technology is rapidly transforming society, stressing that people would need to be able to see clearly in spite of the volatility and uncertainty, how technology will positively impact the economy.
According to Managing Director, Casting Crown Company, Gbolahan Oyelakin, “there are skill gaps and skill shortages. People are still holding on to obsolete technical skills and un-transferable skills, and this is drawing back growth and development in many industries. Some people are learning theories and programs in schools that will become obsolete before they get into the marketplace.
Oyelakin expounded on how ways of working have and are still changing, and how the skill gaps continue to grow wider, stressing that one must prioritise acquiring modern and transferable skills. He pointed out some key skills that young people can focus on in terms of growth and career skills; Data science, Cloud computing, Artificial intelligence, DevOps, Blockchain technology, Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR).
“There are a lot of networking groups around these skills that you can take advantage of. Employers are telling us that the right skills are just as important as qualifications. They increasingly highlight that the skills they seek are technical and transferable, and this is what youths should focus on acquiring.”
The second speaker, Principal Technologist, Obafemi Awolowo University, Mathew Oluwaniyi, extended the discussion by focusing on ways that tech professionals can constantly position and reposition themselves to be ready for global opportunities.
“The tech industry is very dynamic. You need to position yourself. Don’t wait until it comes to your door and catches you unprepared. Even for those who are already in tech, you can find yourself becoming a former champion if you do not keep evolving. You must keep adding value and acquiring knowledge” he said.
Speaking on the topic “In-demand tech skills for the future”, Oluwaniyi noted that if one does not keep reevaluating one’s skills and competencies based on industry changes, one could be left behind. Questions like ‘Will this career be able to serve the purpose I have in mind?’, ‘Will it get disrupted and become obsolete?’, ‘Do I need to realign myself?’, ‘Do I need more skills to stay relevant?’ ‘Do I need to transition into another area?’
He noted that a career in technology is open to everyone whether in coding or non-coding. The coding tech career could range from Artificial Intelligence / Machine learning, Web developer, Front-end developer, Back-end developer, Full-stack developer, Application Developer, Computer systems engineer, and Cyber security.
On the non-coding end of tech, one could be looking at careers paths such as Product management, Project management, technical writing, Scrum master/Product owner, UI/UX, Business Analysis, digital marketing, Data Analysis and Cybersecurity (GRC). There is also Cloud computing which could fall under either category depending on the specific career one opts for.