While the shortage of qualified technology workers has been extensively reported in New Zealand, less has been understood about how the shortage of skilled workers relates specifically to cloud technology.
Our State of New Zealand Cloud Transformation report asked more than 400 New Zealand businesses whether or not they had sufficient skilled workers to fulfil their cloud requirements. No surprises: the research found that many New Zealand organisations are lacking cloud expertise.
Tech skills shortages in New Zealand
Digital technology is becoming central to the lives of New Zealanders, and the success of New Zealand organisations. Despite our increased reliance, organisations have struggled sourcing skilled technology expertise.
It is well recognised that many New Zealand organisations lack the technical skills needed to ensure technology investments can help drive business success. At last count, some 10,000 digital roles remain unfilled across the country.
New Zealand’s technology industry partners have put considerable effort into developing an Industry Transformation Plan to boost productivity across all sectors. This plan’s key emphasis is to invest resources in developing domestic tech talent rather than relying overly on overseas talent to fill the skills gap. This approach recognises that training people domestically is a foundation for the economy’s long-term growth.
Cloud skills shortages limit productivity
The State of New Zealand Cloud Transformation report asked about the uptake and use of the cloud among New Zealand organisations. It found that adoption is high — almost all (97%) respondents reported using the cloud.
On the downside, approximately a third of respondents reported that a lack of skilled cloud expertise limited their growth. Our research showed that 37% of organisations that responded lack the cloud skills to achieve maximum productivity. Moreover, the report found that over half of the research respondents tried to hire new cloud staff in the last year.
Our State of New Zealand Cloud Transformation report also highlighted the difficulties organisations have securing the right skill set for maximising the benefits they realise from cloud usage.
Findings indicated that the companies who are most advanced in their cloud adoption are most aware of shortages of skilled cloud expertise.
The report also showed that concerns about a lack of expertise is one of the reasons the C-suite can be hesitant in adopting cloud, and doubt their ability to effectively deliver cloud migrations and optimisations.
Another key finding was that 39% of participants reported that a lack of skilled workers was the second most challenging problem they faced – almost as challenging as funding concerns (43%).
Encouraging cloud talent
The long-term implications of shortages of skilled cloud talent are substantial. Cloud is a key contributor to the success of the New Zealand economy, fostering jobs and opportunities.
The State of New Zealand Cloud Transformation report showed that cloud technology is becoming integral to strategic business growth throughout New Zealand.
Critically, the shortage of a skilled cloud workforce, as indicated by the research, is not just a problem for individual organisations.
As the opening of border restrictions allow overseas talent to help fill some of the cloud skills gaps, these challenges might be alleviated.
In the meantime, there is industry-wide recognition of the importance of developing domestic technology talent and reorienting business models to create more cloud jobs and opportunities for ambitious New Zealanders.