Future Cloud Jobs Are About Vendor Management, Not Tech Skills

In a world where a single provider can rarely handle every possible IT challenge, hybrid cloud is the inevitable outcome. If you work in IT, that means that skills in juggling multiple vendors are likely to be more important than technology platform knowledge.

Cloud picture from Shutterstock

Gartner analyst Rick Howard made that point during a presentation about technology trends influencing digital government at Gartner Symposium/ITxpo:

As we move into developing private clouds, we need new skill sets and a dedicated part of the workforce to become a private cloud management team and ensure agencies can do the right things. You need specific skill sets for each kind of delivery model.

It's a point that applies across IT, not just in the government context, which has the added challenge of having to reset its approaches any time there's a change in elected officials. Howard noted that Gartner estimates by 2018, 40 per cent of government IT projects will look at broader use cases for the data they collect, rather than just a single specific project. In the government sector, that's a positive outcome. In any other field, the notion that almost two-thirds of your workload wouldn't have any kind of long-term vision would be considered ridiculously short-sighted.

Someone has to roll out the cloud platforms, so actual implementation skills won't disappear. But if you're chasing career advancement, being able to integrate those platforms — and negotiate good deals for them — is going to be a core requirement.

Throughout this week, Lifehacker is covering Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2014 live from the Gold Coast, bringing you practical tips and advice for running business IT more effectively.
Check out all our stories from the event.


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