As we enter any new year it is always a good idea to reflect on the past year and make plans for the year ahead. Whether you own or manage a business, or are and student or employee, you should be focusing on opportunities that will get you to where you want to go, and in many cases technology is probably part of the roadmap.
For those of us that have focused on the diversification that is occurring in our local economy and job market, technology is one of the key driving forces, and if you want to stay relevant in the evolution that is occurring, now is the time to pay attention and make sure your skills match your business and personal goals.
If you study the changes taking place in the northern Nevada business community you will see how the demand for skilled workers in advanced manufacturing, computer technology and new disruptive technologies, like drones, is increasing. Many of the businesses moving to the region or startups entering the market are looking for employees with technology skills across multiple disciplines.
As you can imagine, the development that is occurring in most industries requires business owners and employees to possess skillsets that were not even considered just a few years ago. Working for a company like Flirtey or Tesla is cool as they are clearly disrupting the markets that they are in and inventing new ways to do things. But do not dismiss the other businesses in the area that are embracing technology on manufacturing floors, in business offices and across service organization. These companies are all looking for talent that brings a technology focus to bear and the willingness to embrace technologically driven change.
As I talk to business owners they say their number one challenge is finding high quality employees and retaining the good employees they have. When I talk to employees they say they are looking for opportunities to grow their skills and to be part of the solution, both on the job, in the community and even on a global level. Technology’s role in solving the challenges we are facing is clear, and the disruption that it will bring to existing industries is just now becoming evident. Self-driving cars, robots and drones are just a few of the advancements that are forecast to replace humans across many industries, as well as change the way we live our lives.
A good example of how our educational institutions are changing to meet the demand for skilled employees is Western Nevada Community College in Carson City. I recently met with them and learned about their new Industrial Technology Lab that opened last year. It is the only college on the west coast that provides Siemens Mechatronics Systems Certification (SMSCP), giving students the opportunity to prepare for advanced manufacturing jobs that use computer integration to achieve full automation. This type of training and certification is the key to successful careers for those interested in working in the advanced design, engineering and manufacturing operations that are sprouting up in northern Nevada.
Don’t let another year pass you by, now is the time to investigate what it will take to make your business or career relevant in our rapidly changing technology focused world.