Finding people is hard. Recruitment is hard. While I used to think that marketing was the hardest, the calming realisation that changed my mind was that quality wins out in the end. In start-up land, if your quality has not won out yet, it’s not the end. Whether you think that’s a sleep restoring platitude, or a naive investment in ill-founded hope, it keeps you going!

About 18 months ago I gave a talk about starting out with cloud automation. Many of the companies I was talking to at the time reported how important Cloud was to their IT strategy, but a combination of scarce resources and a dirth of ‘DevOps’ staff made building out that strategy difficult.

Now in Spring 2018, the picture is surprisingly similar. It’s very difficult to find either system administrators who’ve stepped beyond their manual-Linux manicles, or developers who’ve widened their repetoire to include server provisioning, configuration and automated operation. These talented folks exist, but the market’s demand for them continues to outstrip their availability.

I appreciate training isn’t a panacea. It’s a long-term option that requires a lot of commitment from both the company and its staff.

The Internet is full of fantastic training resources, but I’ve always found that getting started is the tricky bit - finding the activation energy both culturally and personally to get going. The course I ran at DWP (which is now available open-source), is as relevant now as back then, not because the technology is new, but because the driver for many staff in technical roles to get good at ‘DevOps’ is still around. If you can’t find the new recruits who know the tech, can you help your existing tech people learn it?

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