The COVID-19 pandemic forced organizations to digitally transform, and embrace new technologies in order to stay afloat.
Cloud computing really came to the forefront; this is because it allowed those who had previously worked in offices to work effectively from home.
Now cloud has been cemented as an essential workplace technology; it is now the current and future of technology, according to the State of Cloud 2022 report from Pluralsight.
However, it is not enough for organizations to invest in new cloud technology, they need to ensure that their workers can work effectively in this new technological environment.
Unfortunately, Plurasight’s survey of 1,000 technologists and technology leaders in the US, Europe, Australia and India found that organizations are facing a cloud skills gap
While 75% of leaders are focusing on building new products in the cloud, only 8% of tech workers have significant cloud experience to be successful.
According to Plurasight’s report: “There’s a clear disconnect between leadership cloud expectations and the reality of employee skill levels. This can cause friction, widen skills gaps, and increase security risks.”
Security risks are a particular concern because the main skills gaps are in cloud security, networking and data. “Guess what types of issues arise when your organization lacks the cloud talent to execute on your cloud infrastructure and application goals? Security issues”, noted the report.
40% of technologists reported a security skills gap, compared to 37% for networking, 31% for data, 20% for cloud fluency, 19% for automation and 18% for machine learning and artificial intelligence.
Hiring to fill skills gap is not the solution
These concerning skills gaps therefore need a solution – but according to Pluralsight, “the pace of change for cloud is intense and continuous—hiring to fill skills gaps isn’t often an option for leadership”. Unfortunately, 32% of employers are taking this approach.
Instead, Pluralsight recommends that companies “build talent from within” and invest in upskilling.
Talking about the report’s findings, Drew Firment, vice president of enterprise strategies at Pluralsight, shares with UNLEASH: “The cloud is the beneficiary of huge investment right now and cloud maturity is the backbone of success for many organizations.
“But to achieve this at scale, tech leaders must equip their teams with the skills they need to be seasoned cloud technologists. This is the only way to embed a cloud strategy that is built to last.”
Upskilling is also a good approach given that a lack of learning and development are leading cause of high resignation rates – 94% of technologists told Pluralsight they would stay at a company that invests in upskilling and reskilling.
The issue is that “learning cloud is, on balance, more complex than the upskilling courses technologists are used to”.
Plus 43% of employees said companies were resistant to invest in cloud learning because of budgetary constraints, 30% did not have access to the right tools and 28% did not have employer support to do this type of learning.
Pluralsight also dug into the learning method that technologists prefer. 71% wanted access to daily or weekly learning opportunities, while 64% wanted hands-on tools.
The report explained: “Ranking high was in-person and virtual instructor-led training. This makes sense given that cloud learning doesn’t exist in a vacuum. You need to understand several technologies before you’re properly prepared to deploy.
“Instructor-led training, both virtual and in-person, enables learners to ask questions while instructors observe the ways participants work. This provides feedback and guidance opportunities that accelerate the learning process.”
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