The IT outsourcing sector is transforming into a cloud services sector and skills in cloud computing will be essential for the suppliers and their customers who will want some in-house skills to manage cloud projects.
CWJobs.co.uk director Richard Nott discusses it in this guest blog
The cloud computing skills gap
By Richard Nott, CWJobs.co.uk
IT pros are cloudy about skills
"The IT industry's growth shows no sign of slowing down. Cloud is one sector in particular which is demonstrating significant growth and seemingly accelerating at a rapid pace. New research from IT specialist recruitment site, CWJobs.co.uk, has shown that over two thirds (71%) of professionals are unsure of how to get skilled up in this important discipline, despite clearly seeing the opportunities a career in cloud could bring.
Cloud shows no signs of slowing
Cloud has been a hot topic in the IT sector for a while now and whilst it's not a new technology, it is still continuing to evolve and adapt, as more businesses are seeing its potential to improve their offering within their external and internal business environments. Google, Dell and HP are amongst many other companies who have already adopted the use of cloud and research from Forrester has implied that by 2020 cloud computing will be worth a huge £157 billion worldwide , showing the extensive growth potential of this market.
New, and growing, businesses have already seen this promise, as cloud offers many possibilities for delivering growth and efficiency. Companies such as Amazon, Netflix, and Spotify have already taken advantage of this business model, seeing the cost effective benefits which it can bring, particularly during a time of on-going economic uncertainty.
Cloud computing is a useful solution, delivering services, software, and infrastructure on demand, potentially reducing IT costs by storing assets such as these without using masses of disk space. This means tools are readily available and able to offer affordable operating expense.
Benefits to business are apparent
Arguably, one of the most significant uses of cloud is its ability to help individuals and businesses share resources with individuals in multiple locations. With so many companies based around the globe and continuing to diversify to new locations, this helps different branches of the same organisation streamline their operations, allowing a document produced in Japan to be available to read in New York, instantly and easily.
Whilst cloud can assist businesses in consolidating their operations, the rise of its prominence means it is also having huge benefits for those working in the IT industry. Over half (57%) of professionals surveyed by CWJobs believe that cloud has had a positive impact on the jobs market; potentially creating new positions that can boost the IT recruitment market.
Skills gaps in cloud mean lost careers opportunities
Professionals can see the growth and resulting benefits of a career in this speciality. Despite less than half of professionals surveyed currently having experience in cloud (45%), two thirds plan to gain skills that could assist in a career working with this growing field (61%). Almost three quarters of them however, do not know how they can gain these skills (71%).
Cloud computing is expanding rapidly and as such needs the support of skilled IT professionals in order to drive growth forward and sustain its important role in business operations.
The industry needs to adapt
Professional's lack of skills is an issue that Britain's technology sector needs to address, particularly as career opportunities in cloud are likely to be on the increase, with 71% of industry insiders stating that they think there will be more jobs that require cloud-computing skills in the future. Cloud is integrating into every level of technology in all areas of the business environment, both externally and internally.
In response, over half of professionals are seeking to gain new skills (51%) and experience in cloud, to enhance their employability and capitalise on the growth of cloud. This was supported by 52% of professionals who think having skills in cloud will make them more attractive to an employer.
Those looking to break into cloud computing should look at their existing skills set and think about how they can develop it to help with a career in this discipline. Skills in cloud can stem from existing knowledge in analysis, security and management, and it seems cracking cloud is about expanding pre-existing skills and experience to get traction in the sector.
Cloud will continue to boost the industry
Cloud is having a positive impact on the IT job market and the majority of professionals think there will be more jobs requiring cloud-computing skills in the future.
The value of developments in cloud can be lost, unless the industry works to promote opportunities for training and further development, necessary to ensure Britain has a workforce equipped with the skills to fulfil vacancies. With clouds' continued development in mind, this makes promoting IT careers within sectors showing growth even more important, to ensure Britain's position as a leader in the technology industry, and to support businesses as they look to modernise and streamline their operations in a tough economic climate."