by Laurianne McLaughlin

Data Center Staffing Problems Grow: Virtualization Skills Scarce

Nov 01, 20072 mins
IT Leadership

86 percent of data center managers say they're fighting to find virtualization experts and other specialists, new research shows. And 60 percent call their current staff skill set too narrow.

IT leaders continue to battle to find virtualization experts and other technical specialists to staff data centers, new research shows. A whopping 86 percent of data center managers say they struggle to find qualified applicants for data center jobs, according to Symantec’s State of the Data Center Research report, released October 31. Furthermore, 52 percent of respondents call their data center currently understaffed.

The news isn’t great for current data center staffers, either: Symantec’s results show that those employees may want to develop an emerging specialty like server virtualization or storage virtualization sooner rather than later. 60 percent of data managers call their staff skill sets too narrow. And more than half, 57 percent, say employees’ skills don’t match current data center needs.

Looking at the bigger picture for data centers, 69 percent of respondents to the Symantec study say their data centers are growing at least 5 percent per year; 11 percent say they’re growing 20 percent or more per year. During the past two years, the average budget increase was 7 percent.

A full 90 percent of respondents say they’re at least discussing server virtualization. What applications are most frequently running on virtualized environments? 59 percent of respondents say Web applications are the most likely to run in a virtual environment; 42 percent say database management applications.

The Symantec study queried almost 900 data center managers worldwide, in Global 2000 companies and large public sector institutions.