Cloud Skills Gap Makes Companies Desperate for Tech Pros

Businesses have embraced cloud services as a way to get what they need without loading up on in-house infrastructure. That’s great for achieving operational goals while saving money, but it might end up creating a “cloud skills gap” in coming years, as demand for cloud adoption outpaces the creation of new, cloud-savvy workers.

In a new survey, OpsRamp found that 94 percent of organizations are having trouble finding and hiring the right cloud developers, multi-cloud operators, and DevOps/SRE pros. Furthermore, “90 percent of hiring managers report that their digital skills gap is either somewhat big, quite big or huge,” added the OpsRamp report built around that survey data (sign-in required). “Nearly a third of respondents believe that the demand for cloud-native skills outpaces existing talent pools.”

As any hiring manager knows, it can take some time to find the right cloud expert (months, in many cases), and that’s despite companies willing to pay top dollar for the right combination of skills and experience. OpsRamp recommends skill-development programs for existing staff “as a way to embrace automation and foster a digital culture,” and that might indeed help ease some of the cloud-related burden—but it won’t necessarily solve the need for highly specialized cloud experts, such as DevOps specialists who are intensely familiar with every aspect of Azure, AWS, and Google’s cloud offerings.

While this “gap” is potentially terrible for companies, especially as more strip out their in-house datacenters in favor of full-on cloud migration, it’s potentially very good news for tech pros with the right combination of cloud skills. Right now, a cloud architect with five years’ experience could earn between $121,500 and $159,000 in San Francisco (for example), and that’s before you incorporate perks and benefits such as equity.

Earning certifications such as VMware Certified Advanced Professional 7—Cloud Management and Automation Deployment and Cisco Certified Network Administrator—Cloud also give cloud experts a pay premium on top of their base salary—a double-digit percentage increase, in some instances. Even if you didn’t originally start your tech career in a cloud context, learning skills and earning certifications can boost your opportunities as companies become progressively cloudier.

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