What do the likes of Coca-Cola, Nestle and Microsoft have in common? Not only have they survived for many decades, they have also transcended generations. Their products are relatively simple, yet through education, branding, refreshed messaging and continuous recruitment, they never fail to innovate.
These companies know that to continue their legacy they must have fresh talent.
I have worked in the datacentre sector for many years, and remain passionate about this industry. It is time for the next generation to understand how modern life is supported by the expertise that goes into supporting the datacentre industry, but from what I have seen, there is no regeneration and no natural replenishment of the workforce.
We cannot afford to sit back and be complacent. The only way we can move forward now is for experienced datacentre staff to hand over the reins, but to whom? We need apprentices to whom we can transfer their knowledge.
I have been astounded by the lack of enthusiasm in our industry for breaking the mould and moving forward in this area. Why all the resistance?
I appreciate what the current generation has given us, but we must also look to the future and work out how to protect our expertise and this will only come from motivating the next generation.
No one can deny the gravitational and cultural pull of organisations such as Facebook, Amazon and Google and it seems that younger IT professionals are being lured by the bright and inviting lights of these companies.
But the datacentre industry should be just as attractive. Key to fostering this appeal is ensuring that young people understand that everyday consumer activities such as social media and online shopping, as well as mobile devices, essentially rely on datacentre technologies and services.
It is crucial that we put our industry first and educate the next generation of datacentre specialists. We must attract the talent to serve an increasingly online generation. We must not underestimate the value of our contribution to the overall global economy but must instead match this with investment in talent and new technology.
The next generation to emerge from schools and universities will own the problems the datacentre industry currently has.
This is where the channel can lead the way, because many are experts in pulling together disparate technologies. Education is key, and partnerships can help develop the education that will be needed.
The answer to the datacentre sector's current problems attracting the right talent is in our control and the time for action is now.
Eddie DeSouza is global marketing and communications director at Enlogic
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