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This is How Pandemic Influenced the Hiring Trends in IT and DevOps Talent with Certifications

As hiring and firing trends become volatile during the COVID-19 months, we are witnessing a rise in DevOps talent to meet global remote workplace demands. The Linux Foundation and edX report have extensively examined the effects of COVID-19 on the open source technology industry, stating SMBs and enterprises are hiring DevOps talent with online certifications. 

A majority of the hiring managers are relying on online training courses to emulate current DevOps demands in a highly challenging workplace scenario. Open source DevOps is certainly a hot marketplace to meet top talents in the fields of Cloud Computing, AI ML, Security, Linux Virtual Machines development, Blockchain and Edge.

The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, and edX, the trusted platform for learning, released the 2020 Open Source Jobs Report, examining demand for open source talent and trends amongst open source professionals.

This is How Pandemic Affected DevOps Talent and Workflow Experience

Despite the pandemic, demand for open source technology skills continues to be strong. Companies and organizations continue to increase their recruitment of open source technology talent while offering increased educational opportunities for existing staff to fill skills gaps. 93% of hiring managers report difficulty finding open source talent, and 63% say their organizations have begun to support open source projects with code or other resources for the explicit reason of recruiting individuals with those software skills, a significant jump from the 48% who stated this in 2018. DevOps has also become the top role hiring managers are looking to fill (65% are looking to hire DevOps talent), moving demand for developers to second (59%) for the first time in this report’s history. 74% of employers are now offering to pay for employee certifications, up from 55% in 2018, 47% in 2017, and only 34% in 2016.

Employees Seek More Assistance from The Employers

It’s not just the employers who are willing to train their hired resources in open source technologies. In the last 2 years, employees themselves have become more technology-aware and looking for support from employers to improve their hard skills in compute, DevOps and AI ML applications.

70% of the hiring managers have stated that employees seek employer’s approvals in building core competencies through open source training and certifications, up from 64% in 2018. On the contrary, 54 percent open-source DevOps professionals also cited that employers are unwilling on disinterested in providing any kind of employer-assisted training.

According to the latest Linux report on DevOps talent trends in the industry, only 43% say they have experienced no impact at work due to COVID-19 lockdowns.

This is what the rest of the respondents had to state:

  • 25% report investments in new tools were delayed
  • 21% reported massive workloads increased due to coworkers being laid off or furloughed
  • 21% reported of having to take pay cuts to sustain livelihood during the COVID-19 crisis
  • 19% had their annual promotion delayed
  • 14% reported reduced hours of work
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“2020 has been a difficult year for all of us, but it’s encouraging to see that open source continues to provide abundant opportunities,” said Linux Foundation Executive Director Jim Zemlin. “The Linux Foundation and our members will continue to work to provide technological advancements that benefit everyone while striving to make open source educational opportunities more accessible.”

The 2020 Open Source Jobs Report is the eighth time The Linux Foundation has engaged in this study, and is the first time partnering with edX to produce it. As with the last three reports, the focus is on all aspects of open source software; the first four reports focused more specifically on Linux professionals. The last report was issued in 2018.

The 2020 Open Source Jobs Report examines trends in open source careers, which skills are most in-demand, the motivation for open source professionals, and how employers attract and retain qualified talent.

“As a fellow open source organization, edX knows how important these skills are to advancing innovative technology projects around the world,” said Adam Medros, edX President and co-CEO. “For example, technologists working on our Open edX platform are contributing to its development and creating new and innovative ways for people to learn online and pursue the outcomes they want. We hope that the information in this report gives open source professionals a clear picture of the industry to inform their decisions around joining and creating teams, and informs organizations’ decisions around training and investing in their workers.”

Key findings from the 2020 Open Source Jobs Report include:

  • Qualified open source talent is still in short supply: 93% of hiring managers report difficulty finding sufficient talent with open source skills, up from 87% two years ago.
  • DevOps’ rise: DevOps pros have risen to the most sought after job role, with 65% of companies looking to hire more DevOps talent, up from 59% in 2018.
  • Hiring is down, but not out, due to COVID-19: Despite the pandemic and economic slowdown, 37% of hiring managers say they will be hiring more skilled IT professionals in the next six months.
  • Online training gains popularity during the COVID-19 era: A full 80% of employers now report that they provide online training courses for employees to learn open-source software, up from 66% two years ago.
  • Certifications grow in importance: 52% of hiring managers are more likely to hire someone with a certification, up from 47% two years ago.
  • Cloud technology is hot: In terms of knowledge domains, hiring managers report knowledge of open cloud technologies has the most significant impact, with 70% being more likely to hire a pro with these skills, up from 66% in 2018.

The report features data from more than 175 hiring managers at corporations, small and medium businesses (SMBs), government organizations, and staffing agencies across the globe—as well as responses from more than 900 open source professionals worldwide.

Perceptions toward Open Source Technologies and DevOps Talent Changing

Back in 2018, the demand for open source DevOps talent was relatively low. In 2020, we have seen a massive shift in the hiring patterns, as revealed by the latest Linux-EdX report. With diversity and inclusions finding new sweet spots in a hiring manager’s talent acquisition goals for 2020, Open Source DevOps employees are also making their presence felt as we head into a refreshing new era of virtualized open source-led business development and continuity.

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