If you’re watching the impact of artificial intelligence on the IT organization, your interest probably starts with your own job. Can robots do what you do? But more importantly, you want to skate where the puck is headed. What emerging IT roles will AI create? We talked to AI and IT career experts to get a look at some emerging roles that will be valuable in the age of AI.
Alex Jaimes, head of R&D at DigitalOcean, notes that today, AI and machine learning expertise is typically the domain of people with PhDs. “Rising demand may open the door for differing types of experts,” Jaimes says. “We’ll continue to see the scientist – PhDs in fields such as computer science and electrical engineering – with deep technical expertise and experience in [AI and] machine learning, but we’ll also see more practitioners, [who] quickly learn how to use the technology to capitalize on the growing number of jobs, but do not necessarily have a deep understanding of how it works.”
The rise of the “practitioner” is one of many factors that will create new jobs, even as old ones disappear.
“Although AI will lead to the automation of certain jobs, it will also create many new job opportunities, especially in IT,” says Akash Ganapathi, co-founder and CEO of Trill A.I.Ganapathi expects a growing enterprise focus on AI and machine learning to generate new roles in areas including:
- AI oversight & compliance: Ensuring that AI programs are running as they should and not being compromised by any bugs, data errors, or incorrect data sources.
- AI management: Working on the technical implementations and operations of AI.
- Data aggregation and munging: Collecting (especially from obscure sources) and cleaning data sets for AI use.
And that’s just a starting point. Here are some other AI-related job titles and roles experts expect to crop up in the future.
1. Intelligence Designer
“I envision Intelligence Designers as AI professionals in charge of strategic choices about how, when, and where develop artificial intelligence components in very large, complex IT systems,” says Alessandro Perilli, GM, Management Strategy, Red Hat.
He envisions this position as a descendant of today’s data scientist role, but with a key difference.
“In my mind, today’s data scientist has a more specialized focus, looking to turn normal applications into smart applications. And in some cases, it will be all a company needs. But eventually, as AI becomes more pervasive across the application portfolio and more elements of the IT environment could be correlated in a meaningful way, there will be the need for somebody who has the big picture and sees all localized intelligences getting together as a single corporate brain, if you will.
“The analogy that comes to mind, of course, is the evolution of the human brain. It’s very exciting. We are in the early, early phases of artificial intelligence and we are still thinking about isolated smart applications, like neurons in charge of a single specific aspect of the brain. But the potential for these neurons to be integrated into a complex neocortex is enormous. And we’ll need an Intelligence Designer for that.”
2. Data Curator
“Although AI will handle many of the routine IT decisions made by humans today, it is much more dependent on data that has been organized, cleansed, and tagged with semantic meaning,” says Doug Bordonaro, chief data evangelist, ThoughtSpot. “Today, analysts and data scientists share this function, but these positions are primarily responsible for producing insights and answers. As AI increasingly takes over the insight part of the equation, we’ll see a new role of data curator rise in importance, focused specifically on preparing data for use by AI algorithms across the organization.”