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Citrix 2017 Predictions: The IT Skillset That Will Drive Business Success in 2017

VMblog Predictions 2017

Virtualization and Cloud executives share their predictions for 2017.  Read them in this 9th annual series exclusive.

Contributed by Calvin Hsu, VP, Product Marketing, Desktop and Apps, Citrix

The IT Skillset That Will Drive Business Success in 2017

For years, the mandate for IT was to maintain IT infrastructure, keep laptops and desktops operating and keep mission critical systems operating.

In a world where people increasingly bring their own devices to work, and business managers go outside of the IT procurement process to purchase SaaS apps demanded by employees, the role of IT in the enterprise is rapidly evolving. So what IT skills are needed today?

DevOps: Critical for Accelerating IT to Adapt to Changing Business Needs

Businesses can no longer wait for major updates to critical business applications, which has compelled enterprise software vendors to embrace the DevOps model of rapid, incremental changes and updates to applications. Rather than issue new versions every year or two, vendors are releasing a continuous stream of new features and updates to ensure customers benefit from innovation as soon as possible.

The DevOps approach also requires embracing design thinking that focuses on the user experience. This approach requires designers and developers to research and understand how people use applications, and how the business benefits from technology solutions that empower people to work securely, anywhere at any time. Similarly, IT professionals need to focus on how those applications affect the business.

The combination of DevOps continuous innovation and design thinking empowers IT professionals to identify how apps and data can address business problems and capitalize on market opportunities. At the same time, IT professionals need a thorough understanding of datacenter modernization, and how to deploy an IT infrastructure that can move as fast as the business.

Datacenter Modernization and the Migration to the Cloud

It professionals need a modern IT infrastructure to support people and the apps, tablets, smart phones and other personal devices they use. With many organizations facing a need to upgrade their infrastructure, IT pros need modernization insights and skills.

For many businesses, the public cloud offers the most effective way to gain access to the IT infrastructure needed to support the secure delivery of apps and data to the wide range of mobile devices people use to do their jobs. At the same time, public cloud infrastructure is not suitable for all applications or business processes, particularly in highly regulated industries.

IT professionals need to understand the process for deploying apps and data in the cloud, while supporting other processes that require either a private cloud or on-premises infrastructure. As a result, they need new skillsets for deploying and managing apps and data across hybrid clouds and private infrastructure.

Workflow Optimization

The most efficient organizations today integrate applications and file sharing into the daily tasks each employee must complete, optimizing them to streamline workflow. This process can streamline project and document approvals, daily reporting and improve service to customers, clients and patients when employees are outside of the office environment.

IT professionals need to understand how to analyze daily tasks as part of a workflow that can be optimized with apps, management tools and file sharing to empower employees to complete their jobs with fewer mistakes and less effort. Businesses that incorporate workflow optimization gain a competitive market advantage, while reducing operational costs and boosting employee morale.

Endpoint Computing

As people continue to bring their own devices to work, including laptops, smartphones, tablets and wearables, IT managers will need to need to understand more flexible and secure ways of managing data to ensure it is protected when accessed from these personal devices. Management focus will need to shift from locking down devices to allowing users easy access to their all apps and data regardless of the device or the actual location where people need to work. Employees and executives will need secure access to their apps and data without having to remember complex passwords. IT professionals need to be familiar with Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) tools and related features, not only for managing the smartphones and tablets that this management model was originally designed to address, but also desktops, laptops and additional wearable technology. The IT team will increasingly need to understand how to integrate EMM and unified endpoint management tools with traditional client management tools to manage and monitor access to sensitive data and apps from a single pane of glass.

The Bottom Line

Businesses around the world increasingly depend on technology to provide a competitive advantage, and business executives see IT as an important resource to fuel revenue growth, streamline operations and reduce costs. It's a tremendous opportunity for IT executives and managers to show how new applications and initiatives can improve both the top line and bottom line business results. But to capitalize on this opportunity, they must embrace the new skills and mindset they will need to be successful.


About the Author 

Calvin Hsu - Vice President of Product Marketing, Windows App Delivery

Calvin Hsu is responsible for the go-to-market strategy for the market-leading desktop virtualization solutions, Citrix Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop. Hsu leads the team that is evangelizing centralized desktop delivery as a primary enabler of customer initiatives such as BYO, enterprise mobility and business continuity, and is helping to drive an industry transition to delivering desktops and apps from the cloud.  

Since joining Citrix in 2004, Hsu has helped the company launch major software releases of both XenDesktop and XenApp, which helped position the company to reach $2B in revenue. Hsu has more than 16 years experience in software technology marketing and management, and prior to Citrix led product marketing for enterprise storage virtualization software company. Hsu also has experience in data quality management and database requirements methodologies, and was a management consultant to federal government agencies.  Hsu holds degrees from The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.

calvin hsu 

Published Monday, December 26, 2016 7:04 AM by David Marshall
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