DevOps Institute Announces Upskilling IT 2022 Report
May 17, 2022

DevOps Institute, a global professional association for advancing the human elements of DevOps, announced the release of the Upskilling IT 2022 report.

n its fourth year, Upskilling IT examines DevOps upskilling and recruiting trends at enterprise IT organizations of all sizes worldwide. Additionally, the report identifies must-have IT skill capabilities in the modern DevOps landscape.

For the first time, the report now offers four versions, the Global Report, Americas Regional Report, EMEA Regional Report and APAC Regional Report. To generate the report, 2,476 survey respondents in 120 countries provided more than 58,000 data points.

"Strong human skills like collaboration, communication, and social adeptness remain essential to the DevOps journey," said Jayne Groll, CEO of DevOps Institute. "In 2022, upskilling is as much an individual endeavor as it is an organizational responsibility. IT professionals ultimately control and manage their own upskilling journeys - and recruiting trends show that building critical skill sets is a worthy personal investment. The Upskilling IT Report offers deep insights into which skill capabilities are the most important to pursue today - including essential human skills."

Research and data analysis for Upskilling IT 2022 was led by DevOps Institute's Chief Research Officer, Eveline Oehrlich, with support from Platinum Sponsors GitLab and Prisma Cloud by Palo Alto Networks, Gold Sponsor Rancher, and supporters Cycloid, DDLS, The Linux Foundation, LLPA, LPI, Narada Code, NTUC Learning Hub, Service Desk Institute, and Taub Solutions.

Key global findings from the report include:

- Insufficient IT resource skills are a major challenge across the globe. Forty percent of survey respondents said that the resource and skill shortage is one of their top three challenges. While 52 percent of the survey respondents claim that they have formal upskilling in place, 27 percent are starting to develop one and 16 percent do not have a formal upskilling program.

- Addressing technical debt must be paired with addressing talent debt. While technical skills are a must-have skill priority, technology without human skills will not advance innovation and transformation.

- While survey participants recognize technical and talent debt, the barriers toward upskilling prevent addressing skill gaps. Lack of time (53 percent), lack of budget (47 percent), lack of content in topic or depth (32 percent), and lack of priority from leadership (29 percent) are the top four barriers.

- Upskilling is a professional and organizational imperative. Continuous learning must be foundational for leaders and individuals and requires a mind-shift across leaders and individuals. The top five must-have skill capabilities must be continuously upskilled: Process and Framework skills, Human skills, Technical skills, Automation skills, and Leadership skills.

- Operations Engineers are the most in-demand job role with the most acute skills gap. Nearly 60 percent of respondents plan to recruit for operations engineering. Additional job roles that organizations plan to recruit for include, Team Leaders (40 percent) and Site Reliability Engineers (30 percent). DevOps Engineer, Software Engineer, Site Reliability Engineer, Infrastructure Engineer and Automation Architect are the top five job titles recently hired.

- The majority of respondents, 93 percent, agree that human skills are critical or important. Respondents said collaboration and cooperation are the top human skills capabilities. However, collaboration and cooperation are the top human skill gaps in their organizations. Additionally, diversity and inclusion rose in importance as a must-have critical human skill.

- Security and Cybersecurity are the most important technical skills. Ninety-two percent of respondents identified this skill as critical or important. Over 93 percent of respondents said being familiar with some form of DevSecOps is a critical or important factor.

"It was not surprising to learn that teams are spending 54 percent of their time globally on tool-related upskilling or training across dev, sec, and IT," said Oehrlich. "That is great news; however, there are other skills that must be developed. If we pair this finding with the fact that the biggest barrier toward upskilling was not having time, I am tempted to conclude the following: individuals are saying 'upskilling is not a priority for me unless it is technical.' I would advise taking a look at the human skill gaps, which (according to our survey) are collaboration and cooperation, creativity and entrepreneurship and interpersonal skills. Unfortunately, without developing these human skills, success, and outcomes will be difficult to achieve. The 2022 data shows that managing talent debt alongside technical debt maintains competitiveness and drives organizational growth. As leaders manage the shortage of skilled individuals, they must embrace a continuous learning environment to expedite organizational transformation and remain competitive in the market."

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