Is upskilling the answer to a DevOps shortage?

DevOps talent is in high demand, and that means businesses must focus on internal talent.
11 March 2020

DevOps are increasingly adopted for flexibility, speed and agility. Source: Pexels

Over the past decade, pressure for IT departments to create applications and services that are user-friendly yet impactful has pushed for new development and deployment methods. 

DevOps is a method developers use to meet the demand for complex projects in shorter time frames.

Though DevOps promises the speed and agility needed for teams to satisfy organization and customer’s needs, more than 50 percent of organizations today are struggling with their DevOps transformation journey. 

The result came from a report by DevOps Institute that surveyed more than 1,200 respondents. 

The report detailed that managing people, processes, and technologies associated with the transformation journey is a struggle. A talent gap is also disrupting the DevOps transformation pathway. 

Up to 58 percent reported securing skilled individuals a major challenge, while 48 percent are struggling with retention. With a high demand for talent, DevOps candidates can leverage their skills in various sectors, including healthcare, finance, manufacturing, and distribution. 

Based on the respondents, three key skills were listed and regarded as the most important skills for a DevOps talent. Ranking first was process skills and knowledge (69 percent), followed by automation skills (67 percent), and 61 percent voiced out that soft skills are essential for success. 

Since recruiting remains a challenge, upskilling programs are poised to alleviate the burden. While upskilling follows the ideology of ensuring workforce stays relevant with today’s skills, its availability remains low. 

More than 38 percent of respondents’ organizations do not have upskilling programs and 7 percent are not aware if their organizations have an upskilling program.

However, 31 percent said their organizations do have a formal upskilling program and in light of the situation, about 20 percent are developing one. 

In the end, the report highlighted the struggle of recruiting skilled developers amid a talent shortage. As a solution, upskilling programs are a way to sharpen the skills of current employees and provide the necessary resources to best support them in their roles and achieve organizational goals. 

Jayne Groll, CEO of DevOps Insitute, said: “Human transformation is the single most critical success factor to enable DevOps practices and patterns for enterprise IT organizations.

“We must update our humans through new skill sets as often, and with the same focus, as our technology.”

Essentially, human transformation is key for a successful digital transformation.