Gartner: Big Data Could Add 6 Million Jobs to U.S. Economy

by   |   October 23, 2012 7:46 pm   |   0 Comments

Big data means big job opportunities for IT pros with the right skills, according to research firm Gartner.

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“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,” Peter Sondergaard, senior vice president at Gartner and global head of research, said Monday at Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Orlando, Fla. “In addition, every big data-related role in the U.S. will create employment for three people outside of IT, so over the next four years a total of 6 million jobs in the U.S. will be generated by the information economy.”

In a nation struggling with an unemployment rate near 8 percent and 12.1 million Americans jobless (based on the latest statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor), that’s a welcome forecast.

Of course, there’s a well-known catch: For the next several years there won’t be enough Americans with big data and analytics skills to meet the growing demand. As a consequence, Sondergaard said, “Only one-third of the IT jobs will be filled. Data experts will be a scarce, valuable commodity.”

Another consulting firm, McKinsey & Co., has estimated there will be a shortage of almost 1.7 million big data/analytics workers by 2018.

Overall, Gartner forecasts that worldwide IT spending will top $3.7 trillion next year, up 3.8% from this year’s projected spending of $3.6 trillion.

Along with big data, Gartner cites three other technology trends—cloud computing, mobile and social media—as contributing to “the next age of computing.”

But it is big data that will directly enable enterprises to monetize their data assets, thus increasing revenue and creating jobs in the U.S. and globally, Gartner said.

“IT leaders will need immediate focus on how their organization develops and attracts the skills required, Sondergaard said in Orlando. “These jobs will be needed to grow your business. These jobs are the future of the new information economy.”

You can see an excerpt of Sondergaard’s remarks below.



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