This blog was originally published on the Huffington Post

Students in Milan learning the importance of the Internet of Everything during their hands-on lessons in IT.
Students in Milan learning the importance of the Internet of Everything during their hands-on lessons in IT.

The Internet of Everything (IoE) is poised to generate broad implications across technology and business markets — and especially jobs. Last year, there were more than 201 million people unemployed globally, and this number is expected to increase by three million in 2015 and eight million in the following four years. In fact, the World Economic Forum ranked unemployment as the highest economic risk in terms of probability of occurrence. There is a clear connection between IoE and the job opportunities it creates, which can help alleviate this unemployment challenge, especially among youth.

A new Gartner study, supported by Cisco Corporate Affairs – the “Cisco IoE / IoT Employment Opportunity Creation Analysis” defines the landscape of job opportunities related to IoE. This will be the most exciting phase of the Internet yet, and Cisco believes its impact on society will be five to 10 times greater than the impact of the Internet to date. According to Vision Mobile, there will be 4.5 million entrepreneurs, innovators, and developers working on projects related to IoE by 2020.

In this new report, Gartner predicts that by 2020, four industries will comprise the majority of business services and applications spend: manufacturing, utilities, transportation, and healthcare. In addition, the fastest growing job families from 2014 to 2020 will be digital security and privacy by 28 percent; applications development by 26 percent, application support by 30 percent; systems operations by 29 percent; business analytics by 30 percent; and product design and experience by 29 percent.

Currently almost 74 million young people globally (aged 15-24) were looking for work in 2014, and the youth unemployment rate is practically three times higher than the adult rate. This heightened youth unemployment situation is common across regions and is occurring despite the trend of improvement in educational attainment. Ultimately, if we can harness the power of the rocketing IoE global phenomenon and align some education, curriculum, and learning to the technology job market, we can use it to fuel economic growth.

Major drivers of global unemployment are lack of job creation and skills shortage or mismatch. The global demand for IT jobs is staggering. The European Commission estimates that there will be 900,000 unfilled IT jobs across the European Union in 2015. And, a global survey found that 90 percent of organizations have an IT skills shortage, and 75 percent of educators and students feel there is a moderate to major gap in their ability to meet the skills needs of the IT workforce.

Technology will play an increasingly important role in business, and employees will be required to interact constantly with it. It will create an unprecedented revolution in the way we work, dramatically changing jobs within almost all organizations. According to Gartner, roles will become more complex and to be successful, individuals will need a balance of depth in key skills such as data analytics, security, device management, and application development and softer competencies such as creativity, innovative design, and entrepreneurship, while broadly understanding the business environment in which a person works.

Solving the unemployment challenge means developing competitive skills, so there are more qualified people eligible for the jobs today and the ones that will be created in the future. To take advantage of the potential of IoE, the world needs millions of people to fill information and communications technology jobs in every country, in almost every field.

But, no one organization, industry, or government can do it alone. To make a significant and lasting impact, Cisco works with nonprofits, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and community-based organizations around the world and invests in corporate social responsibility programs in the areas where we can add the most value. Our Cisco Networking Academy program partners with more than 9,500 institutions that teach ICT skills to students each year in 170 countries, providing greater economic opportunities for individuals and building a pipeline of innovators for the future workforce. By bringing together a diverse set of stakeholders, we can tackle the underlying issues and address part of the problem via a comprehensive “skills to job” approach that requires collaboration.

IoE is a game changer when it comes to the skills, competencies, education, and training needed to succeed, affecting people, communities, and economies on a global scale. The new Gartner report further identifies types of IoE jobs, skills required for those jobs, job demand, and where and when the jobs will be available by certain key breakouts, as well as perspective on the types of programs and approaches that could be used to drive skill development.

Together, we have the power to inspire, connect, and deliver on new opportunities and rich experiences that can open doors to innovation and progress while growing global economies and increasing well-being. The time to act is now. Are you ready?

To request a summary of the Gartner study please send us an email.

Watch this blog and follow Cisco CSR on Twitter as we continue to discuss ways to multiply impact and bring positive change in the world.


Tae Yoo

No Longer with Cisco