The Cloud's Effect on Evolving IT Staffing Needs
The impact of the cloud on IT staffing has become clear: As workloads move to offsite infrastructures, hiring for lower-level IT positions is slowing, while the demand for skills in areas such as analytics, the cloud and security is on the rise. This finding from Computer Economics' recent study, "IT Spending and Staffing Benchmarks 2017/2018," illustrates the evolving makeup of the typical IT department. While IT staffing levels are remaining fairly flat, the move toward software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications, cloud infrastructure, virtualization and increased automation—and the accompanying shift of IT dollars from CapEx to OpEx—has required IT leaders to adjust the mix of skills and capabilities at their disposal. Forward-looking IT professionals should make note of this trend to avoid getting left behind. "As the cloud shifts hiring priorities, IT professionals need to be upgrading their skills," said Tom Dunlap, director of research at Computer Economics. "Fortunately, the cloud makes it easy to get those skills, whether by setting up a virtual server on Amazon Web Services, or by developing a new app on one of the cloud platforms." The study, which also indicated steady operational IT spending growth, was based on a survey of more than 200 North American IT executives, and it includes IT spending and staffing benchmarks for small, midsize and large organizations in 25 industries.