Demand for Linux Expertise Drives Hiring Priorities

Hiring managers are ramping up their plans to bring aboard talent with Linux skills, according to the 2014 Linux Jobs Report, which forecasts the Linux job market based on a survey of hiring managers and Linux professionals. This demand is driving salaries for Linux above industry norms and leading a majority of Linux professionals to conclude that Linux skills are helping them move their careers forward.

LinuxThe 2014 Linux Jobs Report released today includes data from hiring managers (1,100) and Linux professionals (4,000), providing a comprehensive view of the Linux career landscape from business needs driving demand to personal incentives and job motivations that are most attractive to Linux professionals.

“Enterprises are increasingly describing Linux as a core part of the business,” said Shravan Goli, President of Dice. “In turn, hiring managers are turning up the dial on the incentives offered to technology talent with Linux skills. These professionals are working on projects tightly aligned with a future vision of what enterprises look like.”

This is the third annual Linux Jobs Report produced by Dice, the leading career site for technology and engineering professionals, and The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting the growth of Linux and collaborative development. The resulting report should help the industry understand what is contributing to Linux job trends and inform employers about the best ways to recruit and retain key Linux talent.

”While demand continues to grow for Linux talent, there remains a shortage of experienced Linux professionals on the market. This year’s Linux Jobs Report clearly illustrates this issue,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director at The Linux Foundation. “This year’s report also shows there is unlimited career advancement for developers and systems administrators who contribute to and seek out learning opportunities for Linux. The future is a bright one for professionals who know Linux.”

Key statistics from the report include:

  • Finding Linux talent is becoming more of a priority for hiring managers. Seventy seven percent of hiring managers have “hiring Linux talent” on their list of priorities for 2014, up from 70 percent a year ago. With these strategic priorities set, more than nine in ten hiring managers plan to hire a Linux professional in the next six months.
  • Hiring managers are increasing the number of Linux professionals they are searching for. Forty six percent of hiring managers are beefing up their plans for recruiting Linux talent over the next six months, representing a three-point increase from hiring managers’ plans in 2013.
  • Knowing Linux advances careers. Eight-six percent of Linux professionals report that knowing Linux has given them more career opportunities, and 64 percent say they chose to work with Linux because of its pervasiveness in modern-day technology infrastructure.

The 2013 Linux Jobs Report also includes data about why employers are seeking Linux talent now and what the top incentives are for Linux pros, among other important findings. Download the complete report at:

The 2014 Linux Jobs Report Methodology

During November and December 2013, Dice and The Linux Foundation surveyed both hiring managers and Linux professionals about their Linux jobs needs and preferences. Hiring managers from corporations, small and medium businesses (SMBs), government organizations, and staffing agencies were surveyed. More than 1,100 responded with 58 percent indicating their company was headquartered in North America, 21 percent in Europe, seven percent in Asia, four percent in South America, two percent in each of the regions of Africa, Mexico and Central America and Japan, one percent in the Middle East, and less than one percent in Australia/New Zealand. Respondents needed to have hired at least one Linux professional in the last year, or have plans to hire Linux professionals in 2014 to participate in the survey, and they were allowed to check as many responses to questions as appropriate. In addition, more than 4.000 Linux professionals responded to a survey, with 34 percent indicating they’ve been working as a Linux professional for 10 years or more.

About Dice

Technology powers companies. Professionals power technology. Dice quickly delivers the opportunities, insights and connections technology professionals and employers need to move forward. Learn how to effectively move forward at

About The Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation is a nonprofit consortium dedicated to fostering the growth of Linux and collaborative software development. Founded in 2000, the organization sponsors the work of Linux creator Linus Torvalds and promotes, protects and advances the Linux operating system and collaborative software development by marshaling the resources of its members and the open source community. The Linux Foundation provides a neutral forum for collaboration and education by hosting Collaborative Projects, Linux conferences including LinuxCon, and generating original research and content that advances the understanding of Linux and collaborative software development. More information can be found at

See a related interview with Linux Foundation Executive Director Jim Zemlin.


Trademarks: The Linux Foundation, Linux Standard Base, MeeGo, OpenDaylight, Tizen and Yocto Project are trademarks of The Linux Foundation. OpenBEL is a trademark of OpenBEL Consortium. Linux is a trademark of Linus Torvalds

Media Contacts
Jonathan Blank

The Linux Foundation
Jennifer Cloer

10 Responses to “Demand for Linux Expertise Drives Hiring Priorities”

  1. I have a Linux/UNIX background. I looked around for a long time and got squat. The article needs to say what kind of Linux talent is needed. There is a market there for embedded Linux, kernel work, system administration. You need to be at an expert level to get these jobs.

    • This only means that you have to add to storage, VM s, AWS, scripting, windows admin, etc. Plus Unix skills. You have to do the work of five people and still not have any job security. In a bad economy the employer expect this since supply exceeds demand. Not until demand exceeds supply will this happen. Don’t get me started with h1bs…

  2. It’s kind of weird that despite online job sites, internet and supercomputer technology that can probably calculate within seconds everyone’s best chances to find work at what company in what place, the mismatches between supply/demand keep some of IT specialists out of work for many months sometimes…
    Let’s take – 80+ thousands jobs. Is that that total number of available IT positions in all of the 50 States?
    Actually, I’m working in South-East Europe due to tough luck trying to find IT work somewhere in the North East US 2 years ago.

  3. Thats great news if only colleges and high schools ramp up their Linux training programs to meet the demand for linux professionals. No lengthy degree program certificates under 1 year or less to move people into this growing profession.

  4. total_loss

    I have been working as a RHEL/SUSE/UBUNTU admin since 2005 and started working with RedHat in 1998. I am starting my next Linux adventure with a new company (#5) next week as Senior Linux Admin – RedHat. It can be done, have faith, work hard, dream and be knowledgable. You’ll get there.

  5. Linux_Luthor

    I have been looking for linux system administrator work for the last 6 months, I keep hearing it will be a flood of Linux jobs. I am a Mid-level Linux administrator with about 3-4yrs experience with vmware as well. I get calls initially about my resume, but when they realize I’m not an expert then they back or I will not hear from the recruiter at all. I have mentioned to the recruiters, I am able to learn and can pickup new things like Puppet, Chef or AWS (this is not in my current job) really quickly once I’m given the opportunity. I had an interview the hiring manger in the US loved my skills and my desire to come in and pick up the job, but the company wanted a more seasoned administrator so I lost out on that job. Then I sent my resume for a Cloud Operations job, never got a call back, months later the same job show up on a recruiting firm. I applied there but since I applied at the company before that ‘canceled’ my opportunity at that job.

    All in all, something will come along that fits my skills, I just have to keep going.

    Wishing everyone good luck on their job search!!!!

  6. Hey all,

    Do not give up, if you find trouble getting a linux job because you are lacking in a particular skill set, take advantage of the best part of linux; that the vast majority of technologies run on linux are free to download and set up on your home machine. Take the initiative and blaze your own trail by setting up a demo of the technology area you need to pick up on your home machine. Fire up a Jenkins instance, or pull together a puppet project with a dummy wireframe project as the target, and get it cooking.

    I’ve been developing embedded RTOS and embedded linux devices for 14 years now, and one thing I can tell you from personal experience is that it is *very* difficult to find self-motivated individuals who take the time to learn these technologies on their own time, and then apply it to their job hunting. It took me almost 16 months to find a qualified linux app developer in the Pittsburgh area to backfill a need for additional head count on my team.

    Certain centers of tech jobs are literally screaming for talent, if you are truly hungry for work, open up your job search to areas outside where you live, and take a risk on a relocation. Places like Austin, TX, Research Triangle Park near Raleigh, NC, and Dallas / Ft. worth area are replete with job postings for linux admins with 1-5 years of experience.

    There are also a bunch of jobs opening up in Kentucky and South Carolina at new data center sites where large companies are consolidating their IT infrastructure.

    Best of luck to you all,