Roles and responsibilities within IT shift all the time. Technology shifts. New technologies are introduced. Old technologies die away. All this results in shifts in our responsibilities. However, other things apart from technology are also driving these shifts.
First, and I sure hope this doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone, you need to know and understand the business you’re working with. I’ve heard the argument made in the past, “It’s all 1s and 0s. Doesn’t matter what the company does.” This simply isn’t true. Organizations have special needs. Businesses have cycles and calendars. All these things affect what we do as technologists. Further, the business changes. And as the business changes, the underlying technology needs to move. This may be relatively small things like new databases, or huge things like introducing MongoDB or some other wildly new-to-you technology.
Second, the regulatory landscape is shifting faster than ever before. We’ve always had to deal with regulations, depending on our business. From Sarbanes-Oxley to the GDPR, more and more knowledge of the legal system is a part of our jobs as IT pros. Based on the introduction of the California Privacy and Protection Act, which takes affect on January 1, 2020, there’s no indication that this is slowing down. Now, I’m not a lawyer and I doubt you are. So, we don’t need to worry about the laws right? Well, we’re the ones who are going to have to implement them, so having a core understanding of what we’re implementing and why makes sense.
Third, hopefully, you’re growing as a person. As you take on more responsibility, maybe you move out of technology entirely into some kind of management. Maybe instead you move towards a more architecture focused role. You might even change jobs entirely as the other shifts around you drive you to new roles. All this requires a pretty constant work on your personal skills and similar things.
In short, we have to move and shift all the time. I frequently hear people attempting to resist the changes. While change for change alone is a waste, lots of other changes are just going to happen. It’s best to embrace the concept of change. Learning how to deal with these changes is a skill. You practice your backups. You learn the business. You follow the legal landscape. Now, you’re also going to learn to change on a regular basis. It’s just the nature of modern technology.