Executive Viewpoint 2015 Prediction: Firebrand Training – The Rise of the Cloud Certified Professional
The unprecedented adoption of cloud technology has created a huge demand from businesses for IT professionals with cloud related skills. Combine this with the release of cloud-focussed certification and it’s clear to see there is a perfect storm brewing that will make 2015 the year of the Cloud Certified Professional.
In the past, our Executive Viewpoints have predicted doom and gloom. In 2013, we foresaw the Death of the Desktop PC, followed in 2014 by the annihilation of the Networking workforce thanks to SDN. This year we thought we’d break from tradition by instead predicting the rise of the Cloud Certified Professional.
Our 2015 Executive Viewpoint will explore the convergence of multiple factors, which I believe will bring about the aforementioned prediction.
Mass Adoption of Cloud Technology
The unprecedented global adoption of cloud computing by business has transformed the technology landscape. This multi-billion dollar market consists of leading providers Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft, Google, IBM, HP, VMware and Rackspace.
To give you an idea of growth velocity, Microsoft have grown commercial cloud revenue by 147% YOY to $4.4 billion announced in their Earnings Release FY14 Q4. As it stands, more than 1000 new customers sign up to Microsoft Azure on a daily basis. Add this to the fact that Windows Server 2003 faces end of life in July 2015, and you have a further 10 million potential cloud customers on the horizon.
Despite its size and growth, Microsoft continues to be dwarfed by Amazon Web Services. Though estimating the size of the cloud landscape is tricky business. Look at the IaaS public cloud market, major providers aren’t particularly transparent when it comes to revenue and profits derived from their cloud offerings, nor have they provided insight into the size of their data centers.
Estimates in a post from Gigaom suggest the AWS IaaS public cloud offering is roughly 30x the size of its closest rivals Microsoft and Google.
Source: Gigaom – Just how biz is Amazon Web Services Lead?
The Widening Opportunity for Cloud-Skilled IT Professionals
This vast adoption of cloud technology has created equally large demand by business for professionals with cloud-related skills. In the last year, that demand has grown 92%, with a 26% growth of cloud related jobs expected in 2015. This explosion of jobs accounts for almost all of the new opportunities for IT employment worldwide.
As it stands, the demand for cloud skilled professionals outstrips supply and there is a growing skills gap. According to a report from the IDC, an estimated 1.7 million cloud-related IT jobs are currently un-filled. Should this trend continue, the report estimates this number will grow to 7 million unfilled cloud-related jobs by 2015.
Looking at the top 3 reasons for why cloud computing positions are not filled, the IDC report suggests a:
- Lack of appropriate training
- Lack of experience
- Lack of relevant certification
The Emergence of Cloud Certifications
And so we come to the certification circle of life. A new and revolutionary technology is launched, quickly becoming widely adopted by business. This in turn creates a huge employment opportunity for professionals who can demonstrate the necessary skill set currently lacking in the marketplace. At this point training and associated certifications become available so that professionals might gain and prove they have the correct skills. Thus follows the emergence of a new breed of certified professionals.
Over these past 2 years, the leading cloud service providers have released certifications allowing IT professionals to now demonstrate they have the skill set for the associated technology. Amazon launched their AWS Certification for Developers and Solutions Architects. Microsoft have a series of Cloud Certificationsincluding two newly launch Specialist certifications focussed on Azure. You can also find a range of certifications from IBM, Google and VMware.
I believe we now find ourselves at the beginning of the final stage. The technology is widespread, the demand for professionals huge and the certifications are now available. Over the next 12 months, I believe we will now see the emergence of the Cloud Certified Professional.