These days, it’s hard to get away from the cloud. Not that any professionally-minded person would want to. As the cloud becomes more widespread within the business world, its influence is infiltrating throughout an increasing number of companies. But the cloud isn’t just making an impact on IT strategies, it is redefining IT roles, characterising relationships between IT and other business functions, and creating a rise in the number of cloud-based roles needing the right candidates.
It can feel like the number of cloud-based job vacancies is growing by the day – the hour, even. According to research conducted by IDC in October 2015, the global spend on cloud-related IT infrastructure was expected to reach $32.6 billion by the end of 2015. This is an increase of 24% from last year and equates to around one third of the total corporate IT spend. There are currently more than 18 million cloud-computing jobs worldwide, with the majority of those (41%) being in China.
This growth in cloud computing means we are seeing a new breed of cloud specialist surface. These newly emerging cloud-based job-seekers have a specific set of skills and they are following a particular path. But demand for qualified people to fill these roles is high – Forbes suggest there are more than 100 jobs for every qualified candidate out there.
Cloud computing skills are not just in demand by businesses, they are also highly valued by them. Some UK-based companies are willing to pay on average more than £50,000 to someone with the right set of cloud-based skills. And these high-paid roles are not just coming up in London. According to the Tech Cities Job Watch Report, Bristol currently offers the highest rate for cloud contractors at £520 a day, followed by Brighton and Cambridge.
So what do these cloud-based roles entail? Broadly speaking, they fall into two categories: IT pros who have specific cloud skills and IT admins who have cloud architecture know-how. The former are sought after by companies who are already committed to a particular cloud provider, such as Amazon AWS or Microsoft Azure. The latter are roles being advertised by companies looking for individuals who can define the cloud – from business requirements through to deployment.
However you look at it, the cloud is changing organisations and it is important that businesses attract the right type of candidate to fill these roles. As well as recruiting staff with specific cloud experience, companies need to invest in the right training to ensure existing IT teams are able to fulfil requirements and meet demand.
As businesses move away from the more traditional in-house infrastructure-related roles, they require cloud specialists who not only have the right skills, but understand the wider business objectives too. From a business perspective, these individuals need to understand the scope of cloud technology, how it aligns with key strategies, and how it can drive business success.
Businesses want to feel confident that they are attracting the right candidates – those who are able to determine the suitability of SaaS (Software as a Service), BPaaS (Business Process as a Service), IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) or XaaS (Anything as a Service).
They also want people who can endorse a cloud-first mentality. In the past IT departments have seemed disengaged from the rest of the business for a long time, however this new cloud army is demonstrating a genuine understanding of cross-company issues. Put simply, the new IT department has a far broader role than just IT – it is being tasked with helping the business grow and develop.
Cloud people are a new breed of IT employees. They have been borne out of radical changes in technology and are continually adapting to the new opportunities that present themselves. Investing in cloud computing skills is a good bet for job seekers and is essential to any business looking to gain a competitive advantage. The cloud has come a long way in recent years, and it’s got a long way to go.
Now is the time to attract cloud candidates who are able to drive your business forward and ensure that its cloud strategy is second to none.
Read our related blog: Get on top of the cloud to enhance your career