September 1, 2020

Bridging the Cloud Skills Gap
for Faster Cloud Adoption

By Flemming Goldbach, Vice President of Product at LMS365

 

Though some sectors have suffered under the pandemic, others are thriving. The latter is the case with cloud computing. The massive shift to remote work skyrocketed demand for cloud-based consumer and business services. New research finds that a large majority of IT leaders have increased their use of cloud as a result of the pandemic.

The continued growth of the cloud requires new skills and training, especially from a security perspective. Moving to the cloud isn’t a one-time activity; even once a company has migrated to the cloud, there is still more work to be done. Training must be a continuous effort, and employers must plan accordingly.

New risks in the cloud

When compared to the U.S., many areas of Europe lag in spending on cloud adoption. While there are a variety of factors behind this, conventional wisdom has held that this has been largely due to security concerns.

However, Bain & Company forecasts a 21% yearly growth rate for western Europe’s public cloud market as more cloud providers build large data centres within those countries. Yet, though data regulations like GDPR help European organizations feel more confident about the cloud, data security concerns remain.

When it comes to things like data protection, using a major cloud provider like Google or Microsoft can help alleviate many security concerns by shifting storage, security, maintenance responsibility to the vendor.

Customers aren’t completely off the security hook, though. Employees have access to a lot of information, but they aren’t always equipped with the knowledge they need to understand how to keep this information safe.

Many breaches come as the result of an ill-informed employee mishandling information. Consequently, employers have to make cybersecurity training a priority.

The cloud skills gap increases risk

When it comes to all cloud-related skill sets, organizations still confront a gap. Legacy skill sets transfer well to many cloud technologies, but the ability to achieve system-level efficiency and address workload issues present a challenge.

One recent survey found that 86% of IT leaders think that a shortage of cloud talent will slow down cloud projects in 2020. In addition to the challenge of the technical skills gap, organizations must also drive a strategic change management process that will ensure employees can more quickly adopt these new cloud technologies and keep them secure.

A partner in upskilling

One way enterprises can address the cloud skills shortage is to implement a learning platform. This helps ensure that employers can get all relevant information, including best practices, to their employees quickly and easily.

Doing so will greatly aid the necessary change management process that lies at the heart of ensuring cloud adoption.

The cloud journey isn’t a “one and done” situation; there are multiple steps and phases, so employees need ongoing training and access to learning. And they need it in a way that’s easy to access and can be done remotely.

A learning platform that contains a social learning component enables employees to exchange ideas and information so skills can constantly be refreshed.

It provides flexible access to training, with the ability to communicate and share relevant questions and information with colleagues during the learning process. This helps to build a collaborative learning culture, which can be extremely difficult to do without the right tools.

Another powerful aspect of using a learning platform is that it helps employees stay engaged, connected and empowered even while separated by long distances or time zones.

Learners are able to learn, interact and help each other in one platform. An intuitive solution will help learners get up to speed quickly, avoiding the barrier of having to learn how to learn.

Learning as a business enabler

As the pandemic continues to drive greater need for and adoption of cloud services, their adoption will rise significantly throughout Europe.

However, this surge in popularity comes at a time when there is not only a worldwide cloud skills gap but, more worryingly, a cloud security skills gap. Enterprises can take matters into their own hand to a degree by providing employee training that helps fill those skills gaps.

Because remote work is still necessary in many parts of the world, digital learning is the most viable training method. A learning platform is an easy delivery method for training, providing a centralized learning portal for employees to acquire skills of all kinds, including everything from basic cybersecurity hygiene to cloud security.

Because it acts as a centralized portal, a learning platform can help employees collaborate, encourage and engage with each other as they learn. In this light, digital learning is seen as a business enabler that helps enterprises achieve their cloud computing goals.