In its latest report on the global Big Data market, analysts’ Gartner forecasts that worldwide IT spending will surpass $3.7 trillion in 2013, a 3.8 percent increase from 2012 projected spending of $3.6 trillion, but that the outlook for big data has creating much excitement in the market.
“By 2015, 4.4 million IT jobs globally will be created to support big data, generating 1.9 million IT jobs in the United States,” said Peter Sondergaard, senior vice president and global head of Research at Gartner.
“In addition, every big data-related role in the US will create employment for three people outside of IT, so over the next four years a total of 6 million jobs in the US will be generated by the information economy.“
“Our public and private education systems are failing us. Therefore, only one-third of the IT jobs will be filled. Data experts will be a scarce, valuable commodity,” Sondergaard said. “IT leaders will need immediate focus on how their organisation develops and attracts the skills required. These jobs will be needed to grow your business. These jobs are the future of the new information economy.”
Speaking to an audience of more than 8,000 CIOs and IT leaders at Gartner Symposium/ITxpo this week in Orlando, Florida, Sondergaard said the IT industry was entering the “Nexus of Forces, which includes a confluence and integration of cloud, social collaboration, mobile and information.”
“This is a time of accelerating change, where your current IT architecture will be rendered obsolete. You must lead through this change, selectively destroy low impact systems, and aggressively change your IT cost structure. This is the New World of the Nexus, the next age of computing.”
According to Gartner, by tapping a continual stream of information from internal and external sources, businesses today have an endless array of new opportunities for: transforming decision-making, discovering new insights, optimising the business and innovating their industries.
Gartner says that big data creates a new layer in the economy which is all about information, turning information, or data, into revenue, which will accelerate growth in the global economy and create jobs.
“Big data is about looking ahead, beyond what everybody else sees,” Sondergaard said.
“You need to understand how to deal with hybrid data, meaning the combination of structured and unstructured data, and how you shine a light on ‘dark data.’ Dark data is the data being collected, but going unused despite its value. Leading organisations of the future will be distinguished by the quality of their predictive algorithms. This is the CIO challenge, and opportunity.”
Also in this latest report, Gartner suggest the cloud is the “carrier for the three other forces” - mobile is personal cloud, social media is only possible via the cloud, and big data is the”killer app for the cloud.”
“Cloud will be the permanent fixture, the foundation,” Sondergaard says.
“Cloud is not merely about cost-cutting, the end game is not just cheap on-demand services. In fact, 90 percent of these services are still subscription based, not pay-as-you-go.
“We are just at the beginning of realising the cost benefits of cloud, but organisations moving to the cloud are also attracted by the new capabilities they do not get today. It is bringing new approaches to designing applications, specifically for the cloud, and providing more resilience by architecturing failure as a design concept.
“Cloud also teaches us about services and service levels, and the contrast between what the business wants for outcomes versus ITs old methods of getting there.”
Gartner also forecasts that in 2016, more than 1.6 billion smart mobile devices will be purchased globally, with two-thirds of the mobile workforce owning a smartphone, and 40 percent of the workforce will be mobile.
The challenge for IT leaders, according to Gartner, is determining what to do with this new channel to their customers and employees.
“Mobile is about computing at the right time, in the moment. It is the point of entry for all applications, delivering personalised, contextual experiences. It means marketing gets more time with the customer, employees become more productive and process flows get dramatically cut,” Sondergaard cautions.
Sondergaard also predicts that in less than two years, iPads will be more common in business than Blackberries, and that some CIOs are already placing orders for tens of thousands of iPads at a time.
“Productivity is the driver. Two years from now, 20 percent of sales organisations will use tablets as the primary mobile platform for their field sales force. As a result, by 2018, 70 percent of mobile workers will use a tablet or a hybrid device that has tablet-like characteristics.”
Gartner forecasts that in 2016, half of all non-PC devices will be purchased by employees, and by the end of the decade, half of all devices in business will be purchased by employees.
On social computing, Gartner says that in the next three years, the dominant consumer social networks will be at the limits of their growth.
However, the analyst firm says that social computing will become even more important, with companies establishing social media as a discipline, and it predicts that in three years, 10 organisations will each spend more than $1 billion on social media.
“Social computing is moving from being just on the outside of the organisation to being at the core of business operations. It is changing the fundamentals of management: how you establish a sense of purpose and motivate people to act. Social computing will move organisations from hierarchical structures and defined teams to communities that can cross any organisational boundary.”