By next year, it is estimated that 25 billion devices will already be connected to the internet, with that figure set to double to 50 billion by 2020. These connected ‘devices’ won’t simply be computers, they will range from alarm clocks, cars, coffee makers, fridges, baby monitors and smart watches, to street lighting, parking meters and planes.
Having this quantity of connected devices has the potential to change and improve the way we live our lives. It is already possible to adjust your central heating remotely, but imagine being able to tell your coffee maker to turn on, on the way home from work? Or have your GP assess you remotely via the data coming from your health monitor or even smart watch?
In fact, according to the 2014 Cisco Connected World Technology Report (CCWTR), launched today, roughly 8 in 10 professionals even believe middle income workers will have robots that can assist them with various work related activities at some point in the future. The possibilities are endless. However, for this to become a reality, we need a workforce of technicians and engineers capable of building such a connected network. Imagine the skills needed to manage and maintain an army of connected robot assistants!
Internet of Employment
First of all, the networks needed to create the Internet of Everything (IoE) on such a large scale needs to be built, creating job opportunities for those with specialist IoE networking skills. Fifty billion plus connected devices (not to mention the robots) will create an incredible amount of data – leading to a pressing demand for data scientists to make sense of this information. Security will also be front of mind, creating jobs for IoE security specialists. This is not to mention the applications we haven’t even dreamt of yet which will suddenly become possible in an IoE-enabled world, opening up innumerable opportunities for IoE entrepreneurs to flourish.
Technology isn’t just shaping the jobs of the future and the skills we need to fulfil them, it’s shaping the way we work too. The CCWTR also reveals that the majority of Generation X and Y professionals believe that smartphones and wearable devices will be the workforce’s most important ‘connected’ device. This will enable new ways of working; such as creating ‘supertaskers’ – people who can successfully do more than two things at once, and do them well.
Wanted: 900,000 IT Pros
However, today’s global ICT skills shortage could seriously hamper this connected vision. Realising this potential depends on the individuals and having the skills and knowledge to harness the opportunities IoE provides. Currently the outlook is bleak, with the EU already expecting that there will be up to 900,000 ICT vacancies by 2015.
This is why I, and many of our education partners were in Barcelona last month to launch the first global IoE curriculum, introduced by the Cisco Networking Academy. The new curriculum seeks to help close the broadening ICT skills gap and empower a new generation of innovators to embrace the IoE’s full possibilities. Cisco Networking Academy also recently launched an IoE ‘Smart Grid’ curriculum, which gives electricians the Internet Protocol (IP) skills to service the millions of potential new intelligent smart grid devices that are due to be installed in EU households by 2020.
Smarter teaching – smarter living
Initiatives like Cisco Networking Academy, and support for ICT related skill development, can make a massive difference and create employment on a large scale in both the short and long term. Barcelona’s Smart City programme provides a great example of the positive potential of IoE, creating 47,000 new jobs through innovations from smart bus shelters to a smart waste management system.
Europe has a chance to grasp the opportunities IoE can bring -- by equipping people with the skills required to meet the soaring demand for the new jobs created in a world where everything is connected. Five million students have already enrolled in Cisco Networking Academy in the last 17 years, with over 9000 academies present in 170 countries. With the new IoE courses in place, Networking Academy students now have the chance to gain the skills needed to drive the workforce of the future – and be an integral part of the IoE journey.
Job searching, hiring and our daily work life are rapidly changing thanks to technological innovations. Knowledge workers are gaining greater control and flexibility over their employment experience. This will start from the moment job seekers begin an employment search.
Organizations will need to evolve their processes to find and hire the best talent in the future. Today’s methods won’t work with tomorrow’s workforce. Consider the case of “Katya,” a top graduate from a well-respected university in 2020. After graduation, Katya will land her first job at D&Y, one of the country’s last two major accounting firms.
Submitting an online resume and completing several rounds of in-person interviews will not be the way Katya gets hired. Read More »
What if an industrial vehicle or piece of equipment could tell you to change a part or warn you before it breaks? The impact for mining and other industrial companies would be tremendous in terms of reduced downtime and maintenance costs. As I spent time with mining executives at the recent SAP Mining Forum, many interesting discussions were around the impact of the Internet of Things (IoT) in their operations. In fact, Cisco and SAP have been working on using (or ‘mining’) the wealth of data from sensors and machines in new and innovative ways.
The most immediate impact of IoT on mining is in the improvements to maintenance of mining heavy machinery and assets. Based on the many conversations I have had with industry experts, it is apparent that many in the mining industry are using a ‘break to fix’ mentality on their assets. They ‘push’ the asset to a point that it breaks. The issue here is that this approach is unpredictable and incredibly costly to the operations of the business. Waiting until a machine breaks leads to downtime which leads to lost revenue. Read More »
I just returned from the Internet of Things (IoT) Global Summit in Washington DC, where I was privileged to speak on accelerating Smart City growth worldwide through the Internet of Everything (IoE). At Cisco, we’ve pioneered the idea that the next wave of the Internet is not just about devices and things, but about the interconnections among people, process, data, and things—what we call the Internet of Everything. So it was gratifying that even at an event built around the Internet of Things, much of the conversation centered on people and process in connection with technology.
The IoT Global Summit brought together about 200 business leaders, policy makers, and regulators to talk about the impact of IoT on the ways we conduct business, provide services, and interact with people, as well as on the fundamental issues of security and privacy.
One of the interesting things about how IoT is playing out in Smart and Connected Cities around the world is Read More »
In our increasingly interconnected world, the Internet of Everything is making trust a critical element of how people use network-connected devices to work, play, live, and learn. The relentless rise in information security breaches underscores the deep need for enterprises and governments alike to trust that their systems, data, business partners, customers, and citizens are safe.
Consequently, I see an evolution taking place regarding accountability in cybersecurity moving up to the boardroom level, an issue I discussed earlier this year in Fortune. In a recent Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) report, 55 percent of corporate directors revealed that they have to personally understand and manage cyber as a risk area. The National Association of Corporate Directors recently published a document on corporate directors’ ownership and management of risk in cyber for public companies. In March of this year, an SEC commissioner said that the SEC plans to create a requirement for corporate directors regarding managing cybersecurity as a risk.