In a previous post I referred to the need for constant learning that is a prerequisite for IT workers to remain successful in their jobs. Fortunately, new and emerging technologies are not merely changing the way IT professionals work, but also how they obtain their training and manage their projects.
Thanks to new advances in virtual and augmented reality, learning is becoming more engaging and relevant for employees – and therefore more effective. One well-known example of such a highly effective training method is e-learning. Important new advances in that field have integrated gamification, using gameplay concepts to encourage learning.
Another example is simulation training, which allows employees to work on seemingly real-life problems through virtual interfaces. Simulation training has the added advantage that companies can incorporate it remotely in their training processes. Sometimes it is even done on site, for example through a computer at a point of sale in a retail environment, in order to give employees an even more concrete, hands-on experience.
Trust and transparency.
The distributed ledger technology that is blockchain, promises to solve the problem of digital trust through improved or, better yet, full transparency. This could have a profound transformative effect on various industries. As the Lab’s study shows, all sectors in Belgium are working to a greater or lesser extent with blockchain technology. However, finance and government are by far the most active sectors, representing more than half of the projects. Governments, especially the Flemish Government and the City of Antwerp / Digipolis, are actually involved in one out of three projects, at different levels: as the initiator, lender or simply as advisor to the project.
Centralised data, decentralised team.
At the same time, technology is also changing the way IT projects are managed. And clearly for the better, as project management has become a lot easier for everyone involved. With cloud computing, as well as mobile applications and project management software, IT teams can now discuss and work on projects around the country – or the globe, even. Team members from multiple cities, countries and continents no longer have to be confined in the same room to collaborate on a project or share information. Not only does this enable better alignment between project needs and available resources, but it can dramatically improve the speed at which a team can operate.
The advent of the cloud especially has had a significant impact on how IT projects are managed. By storing critical resources in the cloud, team members can now access project documents, images and more with ease – and without a never-ending email chain. And thanks to cloud-based project management software, project managers can easily update all project documentation, check on task statuses, and alert their team of any issues in a matter of seconds.
And then there’s the success of social collaboration tools, which have slowly but surely begun to replace email as a means of sharing project updates, documents and other critical information. Rather than attempting to sift through an impossible-to-manage sprawl of emails, meeting notes and other documentation to find relevant information, project team members can now use cloud collaboration tools to communicate in real time and organize all of their interactions and work documents together in a single location.