While many careers have followed a downhill path for the past few years, jobs in the technology sector are steadily moving up with people often blazing new trails for their own careers. The demand for technical skills has increased partly because of the downsizing of personnel in companies throughout the U.S.

Improving Performance

Companies need to get more work done with fewer people. They must rely on their technical resources to improve efficiency and throughput. Better inventory management, network administration and human resources reporting help companies get the most out of their personnel and technology. The downturn of the economy has not decreased the appetite for high tech products and services.

A Change in Location

Silicon Valley in California has often been viewed as the hub of technical jobs in the U.S. The predominance of high-speed networks and improvements in communications technology means that companies can do more of their business over the network. High tech companies are now looking for real estate in cities where the cost of living is lower and where the cities are giving incentives to have them move there. Many of these cities have an excess of technical people ready to get back to work.

Some of the up and coming locations include Raleigh, N.C., Kansas City, Mo., and Detroit, Mich.

Doing Business Online

Internet retailing grows every year. More people are purchasing food, clothing, electronics and gifts online. Personnel staffing is slowly shifting from the clerk walking the showroom floor to the technologist responsible for maintaining the online product catalog, the online time and attendance reporting for employees, and fine tuning the shopping cart checkout process.

Inventory management, customer relationship management (CRM), and shipping and distribution are examples of technical skills that once important to the “brick and mortar” establishment, can now be upgraded to meet the needs of the online retailer. The principles behind these areas are all still used online. It’s just the implementation of them that has shifted.

Computing in the Clouds

The hub of technology has evolved throughout the years. Once relying on a room full of huge computers running applications that could be run from a terminal hard wired to them, companies are now using applications to run their business over the Internet. Many of the enterprise-wide applications can now be accessed through cloud computing. Data storage and manipulation is also being done in the cloud.

With the use of wireless technology, data and applications can now be accessed any time from anywhere. Technical jobs are opening up for people to build and maintain applications, manage data and security, and do migration of business platforms to the cloud.

Network administration and database management are two rapidly growing areas in cloud computing. Due to the need to address security and privacy issues, these are two of the hottest roles to be in.

Technology to Go

Mobile computing is growing fast. Several companies are pushing to get tablets and smartphones into the hands of the consumer where once it was desktops and laptops. There is a big need for designers, programmers, network and data people to support this growth.

This trend continues as the sophistication of technology increases and the size of the products decreases. The demand for speed and productivity on the road continues to push ahead of the available technology. This is an area that will need skilled people for many years to come.

Starting it Up

In the midst of all of these technological advancements, startup companies pop up every day. Small startups are responsible for big leaps in technical improvements. There are still many openings in startups for experienced technical people.

Less is More

Many industries are still struggling to find their way in this challenging economy. The number of technical jobs continues to grow as our society evolves in its use of technology to run business and manage our personal lives.