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3.5 min to readCloud ServicesThought Leadership

The cloud skills gap in 2023 – our new research and report

SoftwareOne blog editorial team
Blog Editorial Team
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We recently conducted a survey to find out the extent to which the cloud and IT skills gap is holding organisations back and we discovered that the majority are far from where they want or need to be.

We found that 95% of businesses globally are facing a cloud and IT skills gap. This is causing digital transformation projects to fall behind by an average of five months, and one-third of businesses are claiming their financial objectives will take a significant hit as a result.

We’ve published the research results in our new 2023 Cloud Skills Report. Alongside our data, we’ve also included commentary and analysis from Craig Thomson, SoftwareOne’s Senior Vice President, Cloud & Application Services.

For companies who want to accelerate their digital transformation, closing the cloud skills gap is critical. We have seen our clients innovate faster through cloud and application mastery while reducing their risk profile. Our research into the cloud skills gap shows how much is at stake. The majority of organisations see cloud managed services as a crucial way to bridge the gap, with the option of scaling back these resources as they build their own internal capabilities for the future.
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Craig Thomson

Senior Vice President, Cloud & Application Services, SoftwareOne

The 2023 Cloud Skills Report

The survey canvassed the opinions of 500 IT decision-makers (ITDMs) from the UK, Benelux, North America, and Australia. It found that almost all (95%) of the ITDMs believe their team has been negatively impacted by the cloud-skills gap. This is likely due to the fact that the cloud is constantly evolving, and there is a high demand for skilled professionals who can keep up with the latest trends and technologies.

Businesses missing out on key cloud benefits

The survey also found that businesses are missing out on key cloud benefits as a result of the skills gap. For example, 43% of respondents noted their organisations have struggled to keep up to date with security and compliance, 41% have had application performance issues and outages, and 38% have missed KPIs on delivering new innovations to the business. One-third even said they had to restrict their use of the cloud altogether.

Increased cyber security risks

Organisations are not only failing to capitalise on the full potential of their cloud investments, but they are also putting themselves at increased risk of cyber-attacks and regulatory breaches due to a shortage of cloud skills.

This is particularly serious as far as security is concerned. The high cost of data breaches is well-documented, with the latest data from IBM putting the global average cost at £3.6 million. This figure is likely to increase in the coming years as cyber-attacks become more sophisticated and businesses collect more sensitive data.

Businesses can mitigate the risks associated with the cloud skills gap by investing in cloud managed services. Cloud Managed Service Providers (MSPs) have the expertise and resources to help businesses manage their cloud infrastructure and applications securely and efficiently.

Managed services seen as key to bridging the gap

When looking to the future, the IT decision-makers were confident that the cloud-skills gap within their organisation would improve in the years to come, with 87% saying they believe it will get better in the next five years. In the interim, the survey respondents view investing in cloud managed services as the key to success. Almost all (93%) respondents agree that investing in cloud-managed services will be a priority in the next 12 months.

Partnering with cloud experts

We advise businesses struggling with a shortage of cloud skills to bridge the gap with a partner. A partner that is able to work with you as a strategic business partner, that is focused (agnostically) on helping you migrate to a better future.

To succeed with cloud adoption, you need a partner that can help you get from where you are on your cloud journey to where you want to get to, and is not tied to a specific vendor or hyperscaler. They should allow you to scale up their service at first, but then gradually scale back when you’ve reoriented your team or started hiring a few more people. This flexibility allows companies to retain control of their business in the way that is best suited to their unique needs.

Not every organisation is the same and the cloud partner you work with needs to know this and map their recommendations to the strategic and tactical direction in which you want to travel.

Another integral aspect of cloud adoption is to think of it as a long-term journey for your business. You won't achieve your goals overnight, so strategise for a 3-5 year horizon, starting with your desired outcomes and then working backwards. The specifics will change and adapt along the way, but your overarching goals will guide you.

Final thoughts

The cloud skills gap is a major challenge facing businesses today. However, there are a number of things that businesses can do to bridge the gap, such as investing in cloud managed services and partnering with cloud experts. By taking these steps, businesses can ensure that they are able to fully benefit from the cloud and achieve their digital transformation goals.

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Out now: Cloud Skills Report

Download our new Cloud Skills Gap Report today to find out how your business compares to other organisations and how many are investing in managed services as a solution to their challenges.

Out now: Cloud Skills Report

Download our new Cloud Skills Gap Report today to find out how your business compares to other organisations and how many are investing in managed services as a solution to their challenges.


SoftwareOne blog editorial team

Blog Editorial Team

We analyse the latest IT trends and industry-relevant innovations to keep you up-to-date with the latest technology.