A large corporation with an active website, such as Comcast, Verizon or Cisco, has a full-time staff of Web personnel to keep the site content updated and have live chats with site visitors. This support staff may work directly for the owner of the website or for a contractor who provides IT staff. For many small businesses, this level of support is being replaced by cloud-based help desk software, and the IT industry will continue shrinking as more of these jobs can be done by computers.
For the foreseeable future, at least, software development will be performed by humans, but basic Web and mobile apps can be generated from a template with preset values. Website content will have to be written by humans, at least until computers are able to pass the Turing test. However, content publishing doesn’t require IT staff, and most Web hosting services offer managed hosting and content management systems that make Web administration relatively easy.
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Most basic IT needs can be performed by the existing staff of small businesses, with the aid of help desk support and customer relationship management software. Only very large companies need full-time IT staff, and few businesses need full-time employees to perform traditional IT services such as Windows installation, PC repair and virus removal. IT support contractors usually offer these services to businesses and individuals with immediate PC repair needs, and they perform emergency services such as data recovery and PC troubleshooting when walk-in customers hire them to fix a specific problem.
Computers are becoming increasingly important as more people have mobile devices and rely on the Internet for shopping, entertainment and business. While this trend increases demand for software developers and Web designers, it reduces the need for an information technology technician as people become more computer literate in general.