Hacking becomes more useful (necessary) later on, when the missions are more dangerous. For instance, if you have to escort a technician to modify more than one console, the technician cannot be improved (protection with armour, shield, etc., neither weapons) and so, without a lot of ability to restore health, the escorted person will die in a fight. If you have a hacker, it is trivial to find a node which will allow you to help this mission succeed. One can lower the alert level (to avoid guards) and locate the target/s (the console/s the guest needs to update) on your map.
If you have a ship full of Giga worms, for example, and no idea where to find the consoles it is very likely the mission will fail because your technician will die from all the combat.
Also, this last game I spent about four times longer playing hacker quests. I spent most of the cash awards on my deck, which allowed me to (occasionally) take out a difficult hack, like a core crash, for >1000 credits.
There are also very specific times when you need a hacker or else you will fail the mission. (Try hacking without a hacker —— the game hangs.)