Cloud skill shortages are straining developer teams

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Cloud skills shortages have pushed developer teams over the edge for the past year, according to SoftwareOne, putting many projects on a slow timeline amid struggles to meet growing demands. To discover this, SoftwareOne surveyed IT decision-makers from across the UK, North America, Benelux, and Australia.

The results show that 43% have struggled to keep up to date with governance, security, and compliance-related needs due to a specialist shortage. Workloads and backlogs grow as pressure on teams mounts, sometimes causing them to quit at some firms amid struggles to retain critical cloud specialists.

Staff shortages have seen four in ten organizations experience application performance issues and outages in the last year. 38% of decision-makers reported missing critical KPIs on delivering innovations at their companies.

A vicious cycle

According to Craig Thompson, SoftwareOne’s senior Veep of Cloud and Application Services, closing the cloud skills gap is vital for companies looking to speed up their digital transformation. SoftwareOne reports seeing its clients innovate faster through cloud and application mastery while shrinking their risk profile.

The study described skills shortages as a vicious cycle in which organizations are stripped of the ability to modernize operations while burning out the staff they already have. Almost 2 out of 3 respondents said their workloads had increased noticeably due to cloud skills shortages, which has led to overburdened teams taking a large bite out of productivity rates (about 31%).

The lower productivity, in turn, means organizations restrict cloud usage as current staff are too busy to allocate time to projects or need upskilling. The pressure-cooker environment has made it hard to retain staff, with 40% of organizations struggling over the past year.

Stopgaps and hope

Even with current conditions being what they are, most IT decision-makers are confident the situation will change in the coming years. 87% say they believe improvement is coming within the next five years as more specialists enter the workforce.

While they wait, almost all respondents said they prioritize upskilling existing IT teams to adapt to new working methods over the next 12 months. More than nine in ten said they have engaged with consultants or managed services providers to bridge the gap.

Thomson points to the research as proof of what is at stake, saying that many organizations see managed services as a “crucial way to bridge the gap, with the option of scaling back these resources” as they work on internal capabilities for the future.

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