Top 50 #CloudComputing Twitter Influencers

Jen Cohen Crompton

#CLOUDCOMPUTING – TWITTER INFLUENCERS

We are aimed at becoming an authority on business innovation and want to help you identify the top influencers so you can follow the latest trends, news and opinions of these influencers in the field of Cloud Computing.

Last week, we posted the Top 50 Big Data Twitter Influencers.We’ll be publishing more lists on analytics and enterprise mobility in the coming weeks. Here is the list of Top 50 Cloud Computing Influencers on Twitter.

Note: Cloud Computing Twitter influencers were determined based on tweeted topics, influence as measured by Klout, number of followers, and number of tweets. Below are the “top” influencers at this time based on the combination of factors.

@DavidLinthicum – David Linthicum
Cloud computing and SOA expert, CTO, blogger, speaker, and thought leader. Founder Blue Mountain Labs. – Reston, VA · http://www.davidlinthicum.com
Klout – 53

@Cloudbook – Cloudbook
Telling The Cloud Computing Story – http://www.cloudbook.net
Klout – 39

@SamCharrington – Sam Charrington
Cloud computing, PaaS and Big Data blogger, strategist and analyst. Entrepreneur. Advisor. Too many interests, too little time. – St. Louis, MO · http://cloudpul.se
Klout – 36

@ruv – Reuven Cohen
Dad, Provocateur, Blogger, SVP @Virtustream, Former Founder @Enomaly @SpotCloud, Co-creator @CloudCamp & Co-host of @DigitalNibbles Podcast sponsored by @Intel – Toronto · http://RUV.nethttp://www.elasticvapor.com/
Klout – 57

@RandyBias – Randy Bias
CTO & Co-Founder – Cloudscaling, cloud computing, social nets, infrastructure, ZFS, ruby, UI design, mobile, poker, & general goodness – Stratospheric · http://cloudscaling.com
Klout – 55

@JamesUrquhart – James Urquhart
Father, husband, technologist, contributor to GigaOM/cloud, former author: The Wisdom of Clouds (CNET), cloud SME. VP of Product Strategy at enStratus. – iPhone: 37.761204,-122.228493 · http://gigaom.com/author/jurquhart
Klout – 54

@TheCloudNetwork – Gary E. Smith
email: cloudarchitect@me.com· http://www.cloudcomputingarchitect.com
Klout – 53

@SamJ – Sam Johnson
Random rants about tech stuff (Cloud Computing, Security, Open Source, etc.). Protip: Don’t assume these are anyone’s thoughts but my own. – Australia, Europe, USA · http://samj.net/
Klout – 58

@Cloud_Comp_News – Cloud Computing News
Cloud computing news, security, apps, enterprise 2.0, Gov IT, SaaS, PaaS, infrastructure, CIO, cloud computing trends, cloud paradigm, virtualization, CRM – London, Silcon Valley · http://www.cloudcomputing-news.net/
Klout – 40

@CloudTweaks – Cloud Tweaks
The Cloud Computing Authority. News & Analysis from some of the best cloud computing industry experts..#cloud – International · http://www.cloudtweaks.com
Klout – 54

@Dana_Gardner – Dana Gardner
Gardner is a creative thought leader on enterprise software, SOA, cloud-based strategies, and IT transformation. He is a prolific blogger and podcaster. – Gilford, NH · http://briefingsdirectblog.blogspot.com/
Klout – 45

@TheCloudAholic – Cloudaholic
New Expert Discussion Forum Covering Big Data, Cloud Computing and Virtualization. #cloud #bigdata #virtualization – International · http://www.cloudaholic.com
Klout – N/A

@PhilWW – Phil Wainewright
web cloud SaaS expert, blogger, LibDem, dad – London, UK
Klout – 37

@tombitt – Thomas Bittman
Gartner VP and analyst, cloud computing and virtualization, and whatever else I think about Connecticut, USA · http://blogs.gartner.com/thomas_bittman/
Klout – 27

@CloudAve – Cloud Ave
Cloud Computing, Software-as-a-Service, Business, Entrepreneurship, by @zolierdos, @krishnan and many others – The World · http://www.cloudave.com
Klout – 44

@DonDodge – Don Dodge
Start-up guy; Forte, AltaVista, Napster, Bowstreet, Groove, Microsoft, Google – Boston/Silicon Valley · http://dondodge.typepad.com/the_next_big_thing/
Klout – 49

@smarx – Steve Marx
programmer, entrepreneur, and Chief Windows Azure Architect for Aditi Bellevue, WA · http://smarx.com
Klout – 47

@timbarker – Tim Barker
CMO at DataSift, the Social Data Platform company. Previously Salesforce VP, EMEA Marketing. Like = social marketing, cloud computing, big data. startups · http://www.linkedin.com/in/timbarker
Klout – 42

@jeffbarr – Jeff Barr
Amazon Web Services Evangelist, Blogger, Father of 5. Author. MCDM Cohort 10.
Sammamish, Washington, USA · http://www.jeff-barr.com
Klout – 57

@Werner – Werner Vogels
CTO @ Amazon.com Seattle, WA · http://www.allthingsdistributed.com
Klout – 59

@VanessaAlvarez1 – Vanessa Alvarez
Analyst w/Forrester, I enjoy long walks at techshows, candlelit presos and whispered numbers in my ear…pursuing a private pilot license – Boston · http://www.forrester.com/rb/analyst/vanessa_alvarez
Klout – 56

@krishnan – Krishnan Subramanian
Principal Analyst, Rishidot Research LLC. Editor, CloudAve.com. RTs != Endorsement. Seattle · http://www.krishworld.com
Klout – N/A

@utollwi – William Toll
Marketing Executive – Web Hosting Pro – Love Cloud Computing – ISVs – SaaS – SMBs – SCRM – Web 2.0 – Mobile – Gadgets. Curation & Posts by me, not @Yottaa – Boston, MA · http://williamtoll.com
Klout – 49

@martenmickos – Mårten Mickos
CEO of www.Eucalyptus.com. Formerly CEO of MySQL. Finn in Silicon Valley (mgm at iki.fi). Los Altos, CA
Klout – 51

@Beaker – Christofer Hoff
Fitness Culturist (P90X, X+, Insanity, TRX & Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Fanatic.) Technosopher. Cloud & Virtualization (Security) Dude. I work at Juniper Networks. [Now officially] San Jose, CA · http://www.rationalsurvivability.com/blog
Klout – 60

@HighTechDad – Michael Sheehan
Prof: GoGrid Tech Evangelist (Cloud Computing) Pers: Technology/Gadget Analyst, Reviewer & Writer, Vlogger, Podcaster, Strategist, Dad of 3 girls & Husband.
San Francisco · http://www.HighTechDad.com
Klout – 47

@Knieriemen – Greg Knieriemen
Enterprise tech evangelist focusing on Virtualization and Storage – VP, Chi Corp, My opinions are my own. Co-host of Speaking in Tech Podcast – Cleveland, OH · http://Gplus.to/Knieriemen
Klout – 53

@ZoliErdos – Zoli Erdos
Editor / Publisher, CloudAve & Enterprise Irregulars. Startup Advisor. Former life: SAP, Deloitte, IBM – San Francisco Bay Area · http://www.cloudave.com
Klout – 47

@GeorgeReese – George Reese
I’ve kissed mermaids, rode the el nino, walked the sand with the crustaceans, could find my way to Mariana. (CTO of @enStratus, O’Reilly Cloud Author) – Minneapolis, MN · http://www.enstratus.com
Klout – 57

@simon – Simone Brunozzi
Technology Evangelist, Amazon Web Services APAC. simone @ amazon.com – http://www.brunozzi.com – somewhere in Asia
Klout – 59

@JoeBaguley – Joe Baguley
Chief Cloud Technologist, EMEA – VMware : Virtualization, Cloud, IAM, Datacenters, BCS, Energy, Science, Photography, Shooting, Fireworks, Cars & Gadgets! = Marlow · http://www.vmware.com
Klout – 54

@DDubie – Denise Dubie
New Media Principal at @CAInc, editor/writer/techie focused on IT mgmt, automation, service assurance @CAsvcAssur & more; former Network World (IDG) reporter. – North of Boston, MA · http://www.serviceassurancedaily.com/
Klout – 53

@jg21 – Jeremy Geelan
Trying to help the Cloud be all it can…for business and for individuals. · http://jeremygeelan.ulitzer.com
Klout – 46

@rodtrent – Rod Trent
CEO, myITforum.com, Inc.; Missionary to China; Marketing Magic Man. Ohio · http://www.socialoomph.com/profiles/rodtrent
Klout – 54

@monkchips – James Governor
Co-founder of RedMonk, something like a firehose – tech and everything else in 140 char bursts. Developers, Developers, Developers. London · http://monkchips.com
Klout – 59

@SFoskett – Stephen Foskett
Just some guy talking about data storage, virtualization, the business of IT and whatever else I feel like saying. My tweets are http://bit.ly/CCbySA – USA · http://blog.fosketts.net
Klout – 57

@raesmaa – Riitta Raesmaa
Entrepreneur. Interested in Social Business Design, Cloud, SaaS, Serendipity & Trust, Innovation, Sustainability, ITSM, Design, Books. OH-LCH. – Helsinki, Finland · http://raesmaa.wordpress.com/
Klout – 63

@Kevin_Jackson – Kevin Jackson
Cloud Musings author and IT strategist – Virginia, USA · http://kevinljackson.blogspot.com/
Klout – 45

@Fountnhead – Ken Oestreich
Cloud and IT Transformation at EMC. Prev Sun, Cassatt, Egenera. EE by training, wanabe physicist. Husband to @monicafo +2 munchkins. Opinions herein my own. – SF Bay Area · http://fountnhead.blogspot.com
Klout – 43

@AndiMann – Andi Mann
Enterprise technologist in virtualization, cloud, data center, ops. VP w/ CA Technologies. Author, traveler, cyclist, b’baller, photographer, cook, skier – Boulder, Colorado · http://pleasediscuss.com/andimann
Klout – 51

@jhurwitz – Judith Hurwitz
author, software industry thought leader, consultant, industry analyst focused on cloud,big data, analytics,+ focusing on customer experience and outcomes – ÜT: 37.780265,-122.407104 · http://www.judithbalancingact.com
Klout – 45

@gevaperry – Geva Perry
I help SaaS and cloud companies – Tiburon, CA · http://ThinkingOutCloud.com
Klout – 42

@justinpirie – Justin Pirie
SaaS & Cloud Speaker and Blogger, Cloud Strategist at Mimecast- these views are my own and do not necessarily represent Mimecast – London / San Francisco · http://www.justinpirie.com
Klout – 42

@Archimedius
– Greg Ness
Networking, security, virtualization, cloud computing, data centers – San Jose, CA · http://www.gregness.wordpress.com
Klout – 36

@PaulMiller – Paul Miller
Cloud Computing/ Big Data/ Open Data/ Linked Data/ Semantic Web Consultancy & Analysis. Podcasts with tech execs. Analyst at GigaOM Pro, etc. – Beverley, East Yorkshire, UK · http://cloudofdata.com/
Klout – 48

@cxi – Christopher Kusek
Global Virtualization Lead at EMC; Technology Evangelist, vExpert, CISSP, MCT, EMCCA, Cloud, Ninja, Vegan (Contact: M:630.362.1320 – cxi@pkguild.com ) – Chicago · http://pkguild.com
Klout – 57

@miriamtuerk – Miriam Tuerk
Entrepreneur with a love of Technology specifically Open Source, Cloud and SaaS – Toronto, Canada · http://blogs.olliancegroup.com/
Klout – 22

@FinbarrMcCarthy – Finbarr McCarthy
Web 2.0, Cloud Computing, Web Strategy, Strategic Thinking, Innovation. – Cork, Ireland · http://finbarrmccarthy.com
Klout – 32

@khazret_sapenov – Khazret Sapenov
Cloud Computing Veteran and Applied Mathematician – Toronto, Canada · http://ihatecubicle.blogspot.com
Klout – 25

@CloudSlam – Cloud Slam Cloud Computing Conference
Cloud Slam’12® May 30 – June 1 2012. Coveted #CloudComputing Conference Produced by @Cloudcor®; Updated by Kevin Grant #CS12 #CloudSlam – San Francisco and In the Cloud · http://cloudslam.org
Klout – 43

@MaureenOGara – Maureen O’Gara
Maureen, the most read technology reporter for the past two decades, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. – Long Island, New York · http://MaureenOGara.Ulitzer.com
Klout – 42

Disclosure: I am being compensated by SAP to produce a series of posts on the innovation topics covered on this site. The opinions reflected here are my own.

Comments

About Jen Cohen Crompton

Jen Cohen Crompton is a SAP Blogging Correspondent reporting on big data, cloud computing, enterprise mobility, analytics, sports and tech, and anything else innovation-related. When she's not blogging, she can be caught marketing, using social media and/or presenting at conferences around the world. Disclosure: Jen is being compensated by SAP to produce a series of articles on the innovation topics covered on this site. The opinions reflected here are her own.

Innovation Without Boundaries: Why The Cloud Matters

Michael Haws

Is it possible to innovate without boundaries?

Of course – if you are using the cloud. An actual cloud doesn’t have any boundaries. It’s fluid. But more important, it can provide the much-needed precipitation that brings nature to life. So it is with cloud technology – but it’s your ideas that can grow and transform your business.USA --- Clouds, Heaven --- Image by © Ocean/Corbis

Running your business in the cloud is no longer just a consideration during a typical use-case exercise. Business executives are now faced with making decisions on solutions that go beyond previous limitations with cloud computing. Selecting the latest tools to address a business process gap is now less about features and more about functionality.

It doesn’t matter whether your organization is experienced with cloud solutions or new to the concept. Cloud technology is quickly becoming a core part of addressing the needs of a growing business.

5 considerations when planning your journey to the cloud

How can your organization define its successful path to the cloud? Here are five things you should consider when investigating whether a move to the cloud is right for you.

1. Understanding the cloud is great, but putting it into action is another thing.

For most CIOs, putting a cloud strategy on paper is new territory. Cloud computing is taking on new realms: Pure managed services to software-as-a-service (SaaS). Just as legacy computing had different flavors, so does cloud technology.

2. There is more than one way to innovate in the cloud.

Alignment with an open cloud reference architecture can help your CIO deliver on the promises of the cloud while using a stair-step approach to cloud adoption – from on-premise to hybrid to full cloud computing. Some companies find their own path by constantly reevaluating their needs and shifting their focus when necessary – making the move from running a data center to delivering real value to stakeholders, for example.

3. The cloud can help accelerate processes and lower cost.

By recognizing unprecedented growth, your organization can embark on a path to significant transformation that powers greater agility and competitiveness. Choose a solution set that best meets your needs, and implement and support it moving forward. By leveraging the cloud to support the chosen solution, ongoing maintenance, training, and system issues becomes the cloud provider’s responsibility. And for you, this offers the freedom to focus on the core business.

4. You can lock down your infrastructure and ensure more efficient processes.

Do you use a traditional reporting engine against a large relational database to generate a sequential batched report to close your books at quarter’s end? If so, you’re not alone. Sure, a new solution with new technology may be an obvious improvement. But how valuable to your board will you become when you reduce the financial closing process by 1–3 days? That’s the beauty of the cloud: You can accelerate the deployment of your chosen solution and realize ROI quickly – even before the next full reporting period.

5. The cloud opens the door to new opportunity in a secure environment.

For many companies, moving to the cloud may seem impossible due to the time and effort needed to train workers and hire resources with the right skill sets. Plus, if you are a startup in a rural location, it may not be as easy to attract the right talent as it is for your Silicon Valley counterparts. The cloud allows your business to secure your infrastructure as well as recruit and onboard those hard-to-find resources by applying a managed services contract to run your cloud model

The cloud means many things to different people. What’s your path?

With SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud service, you can navigate the best path to building, running, and operating your own cloud when running critical business processes. Find out how SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud can deliver the speed and resources necessary to quickly validate and realize solid ROI.

Check out the video below or visit us at www.sap.com/services-support/svc/in-memory-computing/hana-consulting/enterprise-cloud-services/index.html.

Connect with us on Twitter: @SAPServices

Comments

Michael Haws

About Michael Haws

Michael Haws is the Vice President of HANA Enterprise Cloud at SAP. His specialties include Enterprise Resource Planning Software & Services, Onshore, Nearshore, Offshore--Application, Infrastructure and Business Process Outsourcing.

Tags:

Consumers And Providers: Two Halves Of The Hybrid Cloud Equation

Marty McCormick

Long gone are the days of CIOs and IT managers freely spending money to move their 02 Jun 2012 --- Young creatives having lunch and conversation. --- Image by © Hero/Corbisexisting systems to the cloud without any real business justification just to be part of the latest hype. As cloud deployments are becoming more prevalent, IT leaders are now tasked with proving the tangible benefits of adopting a cloud strategy from an operational, efficiency, and cost perspective. At the same time, they must balance their end users’ increasing demand for access to more data from an ever-expanding list of public cloud sources.

Lately, public cloud systems have become part of IT landscapes both in the form of multi-tenant systems, such as software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings and data consumption applications such as Twitter. Along with the integration of applications and data outside of the corporate domain, new architectures have been spawned, requiring real-time and seamless integration points.  As shown in the figure below, these hybrid clouds – loosely defined as the integration of data from systems in both public and private clouds in a unified fashion – are the foundation of this new IT architecture.

hybridCloudImage

Not only has the hybrid cloud changed a company’s approach to deploying new software, but it has also changed the way software is developed and sold from a provider’s perspective.

The provider perspective: Unifying development and operations

Thanks to the hybrid cloud approach, system administrators and developers are sitting side by side in an agile development model known as Development and Operations (DevOps). By increasing collaboration, communication, innovation, and problem resolution, development teams can closely collaborate with system administrators and provide a continuous feedback loop of both sides of the agile methodology.

For example, operations teams can provide feedback on reported software bugs, software support issues, and new feature requests to development teams in real time. Likewise, development teams develop and test new applications with support and maintainability as a key pillar in design.
After seeing the advantages realized by cloud providers that have embraced this approach long ago, other companies that have traditionally separated these two areas are now adopting the DevOps model.

The consumer perspective: Moving to the cloud on its own terms

From the standpoint of the corporate consumer, hybrid cloud deployments bring a number of advantages to an IT organization. Specifically, the hybrid approach allows companies to move some application functionality to the cloud at their own pace.
Many applications naturally lend themselves to public cloud domains given their application and data requirements. For most companies, HR, indirect procurement, travel, and CRM systems are the first to be deployed in a public cloud. This approach eliminates the requirement for building and operating these applications in house while allowing IT areas to take advantage of new features and technologies much faster.

However, there is one challenge consumers need to overcome: The lack of capabilities needed to extend these applications and meet business requirements when the standard offering is often insufficient. Unfortunately, this tempts organizations to create extensive custom applications that replicate information across a variety of systems to meet end user requirements. This development work can offset the cost benefits of the initial cloud application, especially when you consider the upgrades and support required to maintain the application.

What this all means to everyone involved in the hybrid cloud

Given these two perspectives, on-premise software providers are transforming themselves so they can meet the ever-evolving demands of today’s information consumer. In particular, they are preparing for these unique challenges facing customers and creating a smooth journey to a hybrid cloud.

Take SAP, for example. By adopting a DevOps model to break down a huge internal barrier and allowing tighter collaboration, the company has delivered a simpler approach to hybrid cloud deployments through the SAP HANA Cloud Platform for extending applications and SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud for hosting solutions.

Find out how these two innovations can help you implement a robust and secure hybrid cloud solution:
SAP HANA Cloud Platform
SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud

Comments

Marty McCormick

About Marty McCormick

Marty McCormick is the Lead Technical Architect, Managed Cloud Delivery, at SAP. He is experienced in a wide range of SAP solutions, including SAP Netweaver SAP Portal, SAP CRM, SAP SRM, SAP MDM, SAP BI, and SAP ERP.

Diving Deep Into Digital Experiences

Kai Goerlich

 

Google Cardboard VR goggles cost US$8
By 2019, immersive solutions
will be adopted in 20% of enterprise businesses
By 2025, the market for immersive hardware and software technology could be $182 billion
In 2017, Lowe’s launched
Holoroom How To VR DIY clinics

From Dipping a Toe to Fully Immersed

The first wave of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) is here,

using smartphones, glasses, and goggles to place us in the middle of 360-degree digital environments or overlay digital artifacts on the physical world. Prototypes, pilot projects, and first movers have already emerged:

  • Guiding warehouse pickers, cargo loaders, and truck drivers with AR
  • Overlaying constantly updated blueprints, measurements, and other construction data on building sites in real time with AR
  • Building 3D machine prototypes in VR for virtual testing and maintenance planning
  • Exhibiting new appliances and fixtures in a VR mockup of the customer’s home
  • Teaching medicine with AR tools that overlay diagnostics and instructions on patients’ bodies

A Vast Sea of Possibilities

Immersive technologies leapt forward in spring 2017 with the introduction of three new products:

  • Nvidia’s Project Holodeck, which generates shared photorealistic VR environments
  • A cloud-based platform for industrial AR from Lenovo New Vision AR and Wikitude
  • A workspace and headset from Meta that lets users use their hands to interact with AR artifacts

The Truly Digital Workplace

New immersive experiences won’t simply be new tools for existing tasks. They promise to create entirely new ways of working.

VR avatars that look and sound like their owners will soon be able to meet in realistic virtual meeting spaces without requiring users to leave their desks or even their homes. With enough computing power and a smart-enough AI, we could soon let VR avatars act as our proxies while we’re doing other things—and (theoretically) do it well enough that no one can tell the difference.

We’ll need a way to signal when an avatar is being human driven in real time, when it’s on autopilot, and when it’s owned by a bot.


What Is Immersion?

A completely immersive experience that’s indistinguishable from real life is impossible given the current constraints on power, throughput, and battery life.

To make current digital experiences more convincing, we’ll need interactive sensors in objects and materials, more powerful infrastructure to create realistic images, and smarter interfaces to interpret and interact with data.

When everything around us is intelligent and interactive, every environment could have an AR overlay or VR presence, with use cases ranging from gaming to firefighting.

We could see a backlash touting the superiority of the unmediated physical world—but multisensory immersive experiences that we can navigate in 360-degree space will change what we consider “real.”


Download the executive brief Diving Deep Into Digital Experiences.


Read the full article Swimming in the Immersive Digital Experience.

Comments

Kai Goerlich

About Kai Goerlich

Kai Goerlich is the Chief Futurist at SAP Innovation Center network His specialties include Competitive Intelligence, Market Intelligence, Corporate Foresight, Trends, Futuring and ideation. Share your thoughts with Kai on Twitter @KaiGoe.heif Futu

Tags:

Jenny Dearborn: Soft Skills Will Be Essential for Future Careers

Jenny Dearborn

The Japanese culture has always shown a special reverence for its elderly. That’s why, in 1963, the government began a tradition of giving a silver dish, called a sakazuki, to each citizen who reached the age of 100 by Keiro no Hi (Respect for the Elders Day), which is celebrated on the third Monday of each September.

That first year, there were 153 recipients, according to The Japan Times. By 2016, the number had swelled to more than 65,000, and the dishes cost the already cash-strapped government more than US$2 million, Business Insider reports. Despite the country’s continued devotion to its seniors, the article continues, the government felt obliged to downgrade the finish of the dishes to silver plating to save money.

What tends to get lost in discussions about automation taking over jobs and Millennials taking over the workplace is the impact of increased longevity. In the future, people will need to be in the workforce much longer than they are today. Half of the people born in Japan today, for example, are predicted to live to 107, making their ancestors seem fragile, according to Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott, professors at the London Business School and authors of The 100-Year Life: Living and Working in an Age of Longevity.

The End of the Three-Stage Career

Assuming that advances in healthcare continue, future generations in wealthier societies could be looking at careers lasting 65 or more years, rather than at the roughly 40 years for today’s 70-year-olds, write Gratton and Scott. The three-stage model of employment that dominates the global economy today—education, work, and retirement—will be blown out of the water.

It will be replaced by a new model in which people continually learn new skills and shed old ones. Consider that today’s most in-demand occupations and specialties did not exist 10 years ago, according to The Future of Jobs, a report from the World Economic Forum.

And the pace of change is only going to accelerate. Sixty-five percent of children entering primary school today will ultimately end up working in jobs that don’t yet exist, the report notes.

Our current educational systems are not equipped to cope with this degree of change. For example, roughly half of the subject knowledge acquired during the first year of a four-year technical degree, such as computer science, is outdated by the time students graduate, the report continues.

Skills That Transcend the Job Market

Instead of treating post-secondary education as a jumping-off point for a specific career path, we may see a switch to a shorter school career that focuses more on skills that transcend a constantly shifting job market. Today, some of these skills, such as complex problem solving and critical thinking, are taught mostly in the context of broader disciplines, such as math or the humanities.

Other competencies that will become critically important in the future are currently treated as if they come naturally or over time with maturity or experience. We receive little, if any, formal training, for example, in creativity and innovation, empathy, emotional intelligence, cross-cultural awareness, persuasion, active listening, and acceptance of change. (No wonder the self-help marketplace continues to thrive!)

The three-stage model of employment that dominates the global economy today—education, work, and retirement—will be blown out of the water.

These skills, which today are heaped together under the dismissive “soft” rubric, are going to harden up to become indispensable. They will become more important, thanks to artificial intelligence and machine learning, which will usher in an era of infinite information, rendering the concept of an expert in most of today’s job disciplines a quaint relic. As our ability to know more than those around us decreases, our need to be able to collaborate well (with both humans and machines) will help define our success in the future.

Individuals and organizations alike will have to learn how to become more flexible and ready to give up set-in-stone ideas about how businesses and careers are supposed to operate. Given the rapid advances in knowledge and attendant skills that the future will bring, we must be willing to say, repeatedly, that whatever we’ve learned to that point doesn’t apply anymore.

Careers will become more like life itself: a series of unpredictable, fluid experiences rather than a tightly scripted narrative. We need to think about the way forward and be more willing to accept change at the individual and organizational levels.

Rethink Employee Training

One way that organizations can help employees manage this shift is by rethinking training. Today, overworked and overwhelmed employees devote just 1% of their workweek to learning, according to a study by consultancy Bersin by Deloitte. Meanwhile, top business leaders such as Bill Gates and Nike founder Phil Knight spend about five hours a week reading, thinking, and experimenting, according to an article in Inc. magazine.

If organizations are to avoid high turnover costs in a world where the need for new skills is shifting constantly, they must give employees more time for learning and make training courses more relevant to the future needs of organizations and individuals, not just to their current needs.

The amount of learning required will vary by role. That’s why at SAP we’re creating learning personas for specific roles in the company and determining how many hours will be required for each. We’re also dividing up training hours into distinct topics:

  • Law: 10%. This is training required by law, such as training to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace.

  • Company: 20%. Company training includes internal policies and systems.

  • Business: 30%. Employees learn skills required for their current roles in their business units.

  • Future: 40%. This is internal, external, and employee-driven training to close critical skill gaps for jobs of the future.

In the future, we will always need to learn, grow, read, seek out knowledge and truth, and better ourselves with new skills. With the support of employers and educators, we will transform our hardwired fear of change into excitement for change.

We must be able to say to ourselves, “I’m excited to learn something new that I never thought I could do or that never seemed possible before.” D!

Comments