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  • Online short courses can help you get the most in-demand tech skills.
  • Some of the most exciting tech specialties are in cloud computing, middleware and user interface technology.
  • Prices vary from R140 to R30,000 per course.

With the oncoming fourth industrial revolution, every job is going to require some level of technical ability, and successful employees will be those who can tell their cloud from their Klout, and know the difference between crypto mining and data mining.

Importantly, you don’t need to be a millennial to get the best tech jobs. While young people in tertiary education today have access to technology not even available five years ago, older professionals need not fear the technological revolution. 

Senior workers have many transferable and soft skills that can aid them in their job search, and they don’t have to go back to university to get the latest tech expertise.

Thanks to a multitude of edu-tech institutions (some local), you can earn a certificate for as little as R140, which may launch you on a new career in just a few weeks. 

These are some of the tech skills that companies in SA are looking for, and courses to consider:

1. Cloud and distributed computing.

Cloud computing technologies connect data served from multiple geographic locations.

On the US online learning platform Udemy, you can currently do a Learn Cloud Computing from Scratch course. Usually R300, this course is currently on sale at R140. 

2. Middleware and integration software.

Middleware is software that acts as a bridge between an operating system or database and applications. 

Integration software is specific to the platforms and software involved, so students will need to choose which platform to learn about. Udemy offersa variety of courses  from as little as R150 each.  

3. User interface design.

UI, or user interface engineering, involves designing user interfaces for machines and software, such as computers and mobile devices, with the focus on creating the best user experience.Cape Town based online education company GetSmarter offers a MIT accredited Human-Computer Interaction for User Experience Design course for $2,500 (just over R30 000). 

4. Web architecture and development framework.

This job involves using software to develop online applications . 

Learn Web Application Development: Basic Concepts  for free with Coursera, an online education group based in California. Students only pay if they want access to their graded assignments and certificates. 

5. Statistical analysis and data mining.

Tech specialists in this field examine large databases to generate new information.  

Earn an MIT certificate in Big Data and Social Analytics  through GetSmarter. At $2 300 (about R27,600), this is one of GetSmarter’s more pricey courses. An an alternative is their UCT-accredited Data Analysis  short course priced at R13 900. 

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