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Technology Analysts Predict Widening Cloud Skills Gap for IT
Research projects as many as 7 million new cloud-related IT jobs globally by 2015, with fewer qualified candidates to fill open roles, according to global hiring managers.
By: PR Newswire
Dec. 19, 2012 11:00 AM
REDMOND, Wash., Dec. 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Demand for "cloud-ready" IT workers will grow by 26 percent annually through 2015, with as many as 7 million cloud-related jobs available worldwide, according to an IDC White Paper sponsored by Microsoft Corp. and released today. However, IT hiring managers report that the biggest reason they failed to fill an existing 1.7 million open cloud-related positions in 2012 is because job seekers lack the training and certification needed to work in a cloud-enabled world, according to the IDC White Paper, Climate Change: Cloud's Impact on IT Organizations and Staffing (November 2012).
In the United States, the IT sector is experiencing modest growth of IT jobs in general, with the average growth in IT employment between 1.1 and 2.7 percent per year through 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, amid modest growth of IT jobs, cloud-sector jobs are increasing swiftly. With the workforce unprepared to take on these jobs, there is an urgent need to retrain existing IT professionals and encourage students to pursue cloud-related IT trainings and certifications, according to the IDC White Paper.
"Despite modest growth of the IT sector overall in the U.S., cloud-ready jobs are increasing as we head into 2013, but with this increase comes the harsh reality that workforces around the world are steps behind when it comes to attaining the skills necessary to thrive in the cloud computing industry," said Cushing Anderson, program vice president, IDC. "Unlike IT skill shortages in the past, solving this skills gap is extremely challenging, given that cloud brings a new set of skills, which haven't been needed in the past. There is no one-size-fits-all set of criteria for jobs in cloud computing. Therefore, training and certification is essential for preparing prospective job candidates to work in cloud-related jobs."
The IDC White Paper investigates the impact that cloud computing will have on IT employment around the world and its influence on the way organizations staff their IT departments. IDC interviewed more than 600 hiring managers across the globe for this study.
General findings of the IDC White Paper include the following:
Regional findings of the IDC White Paper include the following:
Full results of the research, including additional details on global findings and survey methodology, can be found here.
Training and Certification Key to Overcoming the Lack of Cloud-Ready Workers
The shortage of appropriate skilled job candidates to fill cloud jobs is the No. 1 challenge for companies looking to bolster their cloud capabilities, according to the research.
"Cloud computing is crucial to the bottom line of the company — it creates cost savings and efficiencies for companies and their customers," said IDC's Anderson. "Therefore, a cloud-savvy workforce is essential to the success of the IT industry's financial health. In anticipation of the technology evolution to the cloud, Microsoft recently announced that it reinvented certifications specifically for the cloud including the forthcoming certifications in Windows 8, which have cloud computing focus areas. These are more important than ever for current and future technologists who want to gain the skillset needed to work in the cloud and for companies looking to benefit from the cloud."
For the current workforce, Microsoft launched the Microsoft Virtual Academy making it simple for the active professional to add critical skills. The Microsoft Virtual Academy is a program for IT professionals to gain access to free self-paced training resources using combinations of video and text.
Microsoft is also helping fill the future workforce pipeline by providing training and certification through the Microsoft IT Academy. Ensuring that the next generation of technologists is prepared for the new IT jobs in the cloud, the Microsoft IT Academy program provides middle school, high school and college students with the technology-based skills needed for successful careers in tomorrow's IT cloud environment. More details on IT Academy are available at http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/itacademy/default.aspx.
"Our Microsoft Virtual Academy and Microsoft IT Academy are examples of our commitment to the current and future workforce," said Lutz Ziob, general manager, Microsoft Learning. "The opportunity that the cloud presents is significant, and we want to be certain that the workforce has the skills to share in that opportunity. Our goal is to continue to prepare the existing workforce and students for the jobs of tomorrow and empower them to develop their skills as future IT experts, innovators, software developers and beyond."
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
Note To Editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft's Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.
SOURCE Microsoft Corp.
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