The future of IT, say KPMG experts, will revolve around a decentralized operating model in which organizations expect IT to work at market speed. That means technology leaders have to rethink how roles and skills are aligned, says Jeoung Oh, principal, CIO Advisory at KPMG U.S. “Most are at the very beginning of this journey,” he says. There are four important steps to getting started toward developing a flexible IT workforce that enables and supports solutions across the business, he explains:
- Take inventory. Now is a good time to start the process of determining what roles and skills currently exist in the career and talent architecture of the organization, says Oh. “We find organizations may have five different job titles and descriptions for essentially the same role,” he explains.
- Look at how the service delivery model is defined. How has the organization leveraged contractors? What skills have been outsourced? Before you can take the next steps, says Oh, it’s important to understand what service delivery model you have today.
- Consider a bot master. Some roles and titles are still to be defined, adds Oh. “With all the talk about automation, for example, there will clearly need to be some kind of automation architect if the organization is deploying hundreds and thousands of bots,” he explains.
- Think about user experience. UX will be a central focal point for IT, so defining roles such as UX engineer will be essential. That means looking not just at internal employees but the contractor base from managed services and other outsourcing providers. “By looking at those skills, you can start to define what future roles will be,” says Oh. “Some operational roles, such as help desk and desktop support, will get disrupted, so how will you retrain or transition or hire for new, redefined roles?”
In general, most organizations are very early into thinking about how to reformulate the workforce to operate in this market speed model, and still have a reactive mindset, says Cameron Craig, manager, CIO Advisory at KPMG U.S. “It’s really still more of a request-based, demand-supply operating model,” he explains, adding that organizations need to shift towards a more proactive, market-based mindset based on what technologies are coming around the corner.
“That means tapping into startups, universities and the rest of the up-and-coming ecosystem to bring new skill sets into the organization,” he says. “It’s also about getting more insight from external customers to impact roadmaps and downstream planning for IT.”
The role of the CIO will also change as the IT organization moves toward developing a flexible workforce, focusing on how to internal customers more effective and efficient, and how external customers can interact with the business more effectively and efficiently. “We’re looking for our client leaders to be able to collaborate across the organization and help move the organization into the future, says Oh. “That kind of technology understanding and empathy is what is necessary to implement the new flexible workforce operating model.”
For deep dive into the flexible workforce, click here to tune into the Flexible IT workforce podcast, part of KPMG’s Future of IT podcast series.