The COVID-19 pandemic has changed so much of how we live day-to-day. It has changed the way we communicate, work, shop, workout and go to school. The idea of things returning to “normal” is fading with each passing month of more restrictions. It seems the new normal is what we are living with today. More and more people are closing up their brick and mortar offices in exchange for virtual workspaces. Thankfully, there are some amazing technologies that are letting us thrive in the era of COVID-19.
COVID-19 Response Has Adjusted Demand for Some TechnologY
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, these technologies have heated up and are becoming widely adopted with each new day. If you haven’t had experience with these technologies, now is the time to get up to speed as the job market demand for experienced professionals will only increase in the coming months.
1. Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)
VDI has been around for awhile, but lately the increase in demand for qualified professionals has gone up exponentially. Customers both in the private and public sector are adopting VDI as their new mode of operation for end user computing. Gaining experience with VMware’s Horizon suite of products or Citrix’s VDI offering is a good start. The online training site Udemy offers a great course on VMware Horizon 7 that will give you a complete curriculum on their product suite.
Cybersecurity isn’t just a hot technology because of COVID-19; it’s been hot for years now. However, with the increased need for remote employees accessing corporate and secured resources from home, the need for appropriate security tools and policies in place has likewise increased. Organizations will rely more on VPN technologies to give their employees access to corporate resources so that they can continue working throughout this pandemic. VPN solutions like Palo Alto’s Global Protect and Fortinet’s VPN client are solid solutions that organizations are adopting to keep up productivity from home. Both Fortinet and Palo Alto have training and certifications to get you up to speed and validate your skills.
3. Office Collaboration Tools
Thank goodness for office collaboration tools. The first and most important is email. Everyone knows how crucial it is to keep email up and running. If you have ever had experience as an Exchange administrator and been part of an Exchange outage, then you know the importance of email to employees. However, email is just one piece of the puzzle today. We are relying more on instant messaging tools and collaboration tools such as Skype for Business, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and Webex. Get experience with these tools because they are here to stay.
4. Cloud Computing
Cloud computing is already a hot technology, and it is only going to get hotter. What’s nice about cloud computing is that organizations can host their workloads in the cloud and not on their premises. If the plan moving forward is to limit the amount of employees in the workspace or data center, then cloud hosting is the way to go. Get some experience with Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure. Each of those cloud platforms are in high demand as well as skilled professionals who can manage them.
Technology Supports Our New Normal
Much like the post 9/11 years and the way in which it changed how we travel and our national security posture, COVID-19 is our new normal. This doesn’t mean we lose productivity; we just need to adjust to the new normal and utilize the tools we have and keep moving forward. Fortunately, we live in a time where this is all possible. If you don’t have any experience with these technologies, now is a great time to study them and learn all you can. The demand for skilled professionals will only go up. Do your research and find which technology intrigues you most and then learn all you can to become an expert.