In Part One of our CIO Chats, Eddie Huebsch shared his background and thoughts on risk and change. Today we’re continuing that conversation by discussing digitization and the way it’s impacting the way we work and the career paths we choose.
What changes in things like organizational structure, career development paths, and career opportunities do you see as a consequence of increasing digitization?
I think that both our organizations and the individuals that comprise our organizations are going to have to be more agile, adaptable, and willing to learn new things. There will be more of a focus on vendor management, change management, user training, and business process optimization.
Regarding organizational structure, I think we need to free up capacity for experimentation. For example, with emerging technologies like AI and voice, we need to focus on how these technologies can save us money and improve the student experience.
In the next five years, what jobs do you see disappearing because of digital transformation?
I read a story by an analyst the other day who predicted that in the next five years the number of jobs in the U.S. may not change much, but the types of jobs available will be radically different. I expect there will be a demand across the board in both business and IT for individuals that are more tech savvy. Education is key to helping with that transformation, as people need to retool for new types of jobs in the emerging digital economy. It’s a great opportunity for us to show leadership and provide a whole new level of value to our students, particularly our student employees, by providing them with real world opportunities to learn valuable workforce skills.
In what ways can we prepare students and new hires to deal with the societal impacts of digitization?
I think colleges and universities can play a large role here by encouraging students to work in teams and challenging them with real world projects. Higher education, I feel, is transforming itself into more of an active participant sport. We need to encourage this and involve our students as we work with these new and emerging technologies. It’s a wonderful opportunity for us to rethink our learning spaces, our labs, and the way we interact with our student employees – we need to be thinking about how we can transform ourselves in the years ahead.
What kind of skills are you looking for in new hires to support your digital transformation?
I often think of the quote, “The pace of change will never be slower than it is right now.” In order to keep up you must be adaptable, and you must be a continuous learner.
We are looking for employees that are team players who have a positive attitude and are willing to learn new things.