The traditional image of IT departments working away in isolated basements will have change, according to research in six different business sectors.
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IFF Research found that IT workers are now typically creative, world-aware, and business-savvy because of the growth in online trading.
IT workers are now a central part of the wider workforce and drive future development in sectors including retail, transport and finance the research report said.
Researchers interviewed senior executives in the fields covered by six sector skills councils including Skillmart Retail, E-Skills, Go Skills and People 1st.
The study found that companies with well-developed websites have a multi-disciplinary e-commerce team driving a multi-channel business.
Ian Wheeler, research manager at Skillsmart Retail, which led the research, said the study had uncovered a new take on IT.
"Online trading is now an integral part of many businesses and IT must be woven throughout the business to make sure they can provide an online presence that fits in with the company's culture, aims and strategies," he said.
According to Wheeler, this means business people must be much more knowledgeable about IT and IT workers need to show they not only have the necessary technical skills, but also creative and business knowledge.