A significant number of respondents (55%) reported they look for internal candidates to fill DevOps roles and hire new resources only when they lack the desired competencies. It means DevOps engineers, developers, and managers have to constantly upgrade their different technical and soft skills to meet different business requirements. Being a DevOps professional is, in fact, what the DevOps Institute calls a T-shaped Professional. In other words, working in DevOps requires not only someone who is a specialist in skill but also has a broad breadth of knowledge.
So which are the top “must have” skills for a DevOps professional? Results from the survey categorized skills into four broad categories: process skills, soft skills, functional skills, and technical skills. Some of the key highlights are below.
Enterprises Hiring for Key Roles
According to the survey, only 10% of the organizations have completed hiring for their DevOps roles, while 15% indicated they have no plans to hire for these roles. This means that three-fourths of the organizations are either hiring or will hire for DevOps in the coming years. In reality, Glassdoor rates DevOps Professional among the top ten notable tech roles in 2019.
Software engineer, DevOps consultant, test engineer, and automation architects are some other titles for which companies are actively hiring.
Automation Skills Are Highly Valued
Nowadays, most companies are hard-pressed to enhance their process effectiveness, speed, and quality to meet evolving customer demands. They need seamless scalability with tools and processes that can run their development, testing, and deployment in a repeatable, predictable manner. They have to execute tools for CI/CD, release automation and constant monitoring. That is why automation — which is at the main of CI/CD — is recorded as the top skill by 57% of the survey plaintiffs.
Process and Soft Skills Are Valuable
Automation tools are able to work well only when people are ready to accept new methods. There is significant demand for IT professionals who have a broad range of soft skills and process skills in addition to their core competency. Process skills refer to knowledge/experience of SDLC, process flow and analysis, source code management, Agile, test-driven deployment methods, and system thinking. Similarly, collaboration and cooperation, problem-solving, interpersonal skills, sharing and knowledge transfer, flexibility, and adaptability are among the top-rated soft skills.
IT Ops and Security Among Top Functional Skills
As an IT ops scale and become more critical, reducing business downtimes due to routine operational problems remain the main challenge. Companies want DevOps professionals who have understandings of IT operations and infrastructure management. At the same time, securing critical infrastructure and applications from cyber-attacks is also crucial. Knowledge of security best practices or experience in penetration testing, threat research or similar security roles can be highly valuable.
Analytics and Cloud Are in Big Demand for Technical Skills
It is no wonder that taking technical cloud skills as well as knowledge analytics are in high demand. More than 55% of the respondents rated cloud as the most important must-have technical skill. At the same time, any experience with analyzing complex data sets is also a necessity. In divergence, artificial intelligence (AI), which becomes a bit of the industry buzz, is only a nice-to-contain skill, although in some sectors requirements for AI skills may be more significant than others.
At the end of the day, whether you’re a C-suite executive, developer or DevOps buyer, the different roles require a variety of skill sets to be successful.