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Cloud Computing the Most Valuable IT Job Skill: Survey

Cloud topped the bill in the survey of 100 IT directors and CIOs, with 39 percent of respondents citing it as the most important

Having cloud skills will help pay the bills, according to a recent study.

Research from recruitment specialists Robert Half Technology revealed cloud computing is the most lucrative skill to have in the IT job market today.

Cloud topped the bill in the survey of 100 IT directors and CIOs across the UK, with 39 percent of respondents citing it as the most important. Security (37 percent) and project management skills (33 percent) were the next popular, with virtualization (29 percent) and network administration (27 percent) rounding out the top five, according to an article on Cloudcomputingnews.net.

Coding and development skills were mentioned. Although not as popular; knowledge of C# was cited by 15 percent of those polled, compared to 13 percent who said Java.

This translates into the hiring of staff, according to the research. Nearly half (41 percent) of IT directors said they would hire specialist staff to support cloud initiatives, although the same number of respondents said they had enough employees for their cloud projects. More than four in five (82 percent) of those polled said they were in some way undertaking cloud initiatives.

"The fact that so many companies are investing in cloud initiatives as well as training for their teams means that there are rich opportunities and a clear career path for IT professionals with cloud skills," commented Phil Sheridan, UK managing director at Robert Half Technology.

Cloud Computing's Impact on the On-Premise Data Center
What lies in store for server rooms in companies that incorporate the use of cloud computing? This depends on many variables, including a company's outlook and requirements.

Of the organizations that elect to utilize cloud services, their involvement may be a little (just using Salesforce to track campaigns) or a lot (no local resources and everything running in someone else's cloud data center), according to an article on TechRepublic.com.

You don't have to go "all in" on the cloud, of course - there are private, public and hybrid cloud solutions to mix and match with.

Some organizations will stay off the cloud entirely, either due to mandated requirements, internal decisions based on strategy, or concerns about privacy/lack of data control.

Certainly, recent revelations about NSA spying may not have helped the cause of cloud computing, although there are some who feel the issue is overblown.

Gail Axelrod of Bettercloud provided some interesting statistics on cloud computing usage in her recent blog post, "47 stats you need to know about the Google Apps ecosystem." The statistics reveal the following:

  • 30.2% of computing workloads are expected to run in the public cloud in 2018.
  • 27% of business mailboxes worldwide are in the cloud.
  • As of 2012, 38% of businesses have adopted cloud computing, with another 29% making plans to do so.
  • On average, an organization uses 545 cloud services.

Cloud Computing Changing IT in Small Business World
Every little bit helps when running a small business, and running a business in the cloud helps save cash, according to a recent report.

Small and midsize businesses need to stretch every dollar in their budget as far as they can, which means closely evaluating new technologies before deployment. A look at cloud computing yields numerous benefits, but SMBs have a long list of questions and concerns before migrating to the cloud, according to an article on Dailytech.com.

The State of SMB IT 1H 2013 Semi-Annual Report on Small and Midsize Business Technology Plans & Purchase Intent indicates 69 percent of SMBs with 20 or less employees already use some type of cloud-based solution - and that that number will increase in the future. Once implemented properly, cloud computing is ideal to change - and reduce IT complexity - in the workplace.

"Cloud computing is introducing the notion of technology service as a utility, like lights, phone or water," said Bruce Campbell, vice president of Marketing for Clare Computer Solutions, in a statement to DailyTech.

"It's still ‘dipping toes in the water' time - the concept of a company's technology resources and services being delivered by on-premises infrastructure is still the prevailing model. But bit by bit, that is changing."

More Stories By Patrick Burke

Patrick Burke is a writer and editor based in the greater New York area and occasionally blogs for Rackspace Hosting.

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