Look out, Amazon -- OpenStack jobs are on the rise

Amazon EC2 specialists can take their pick of the most job openings, but OpenStack engineers are closing the gap

Cloud skills are unquestionably one of the hot new areas for IT job seekers, with a bevy of career possibilities available. But which skills for what specific cloud architectures are most in demand? As you can imagine, it's Amazon followed -- now very closely -- by OpenStack.

An article at Opensource.com demonstrates how a search on Indeed.com, which indexes job openings from multiple services, shows how job listings that involve Amazon.com's EC2 (or just "EC2") far outstrip listings asking for experience with CloudStack and Eucalyptus. Some 2,100 job listings showed up for Amazon EC2 for mid-March 2014, with CloudStack and Eucalyptus trailing far behind (242 and 137, respectively).

But OpenStack job listings (1,643) have been climbing steadily since OpenStack itself started to become a hot item. Red Hat made OpenStack one of its core technologies late last year, and outfits like Mirantis and IBM have invested heavily in OpenStack development.

The OpenStack Foundation has also claimed engineers for OpenStack make more than those trained for other cloud technologies, although that seems more difficult to prove. The vast majority of jobs found on Indeed that have "OpenStack" in the title come with salary estimates ranging from $50,000 through $70,000, about on a par with EC2 jobs.

While Amazon's EC2 job figures have generally trended upward, the Indeed numbers show they may be plateauing, never rising any higher than around 0.075 percent of all job listings since January 2011. One possible implication of its flattening fortune, other than competition from other cloud technologies, is a commodification of Amazon EC2, where more inventive and demanding -- and therefore esoteric -- applications of EC2 become more valuable than basic knowledge.

An even bigger comparative boom can be seen with Hadoop (8,224 listings), where job listings demanding experience with Hadoop and its toolset have been steadily on the rise since 2009. Plus, the spread for Hadoop job pay is a little better, as more of the jobs listed command paychecks between $90,000 and $110,000 than do the ones for OpenStack or Amazon.

And "cloud" as a general buzzword returns some 40,000 jobs overall -- around 1 percent of all those listed, far outstripping every other technology mentioned here. The latter might be a reflection of how many other IT disciplines are now becoming more cloud-oriented in some form.

This story, "Look out, Amazon -- OpenStack jobs are on the rise," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Get the first word on what the important tech news really means with the InfoWorld Tech Watch blog. For the latest developments in business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.


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