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Revealed: 2021’s most sought after tech skills

Programming languages like Python, data analytics and data security fundamentals are tipped to be among the most in-demand tech skills this year.

Other top skills include Agile methodologies, DevOps and SecOps, and cloud fundamentals, according to the Lean Into Tech: 2020 Tech Skills Trends & 2021 Predictions report by digital learning platform Skillsoft, which draws on the experiences of five million learners to offer insights into the rapidly shifting tech landscape.

The report underlines how organisations are increasingly data-driven: Skillsoft saw a 1,000% increase in demand for courses related to data analysis and data visualisation. Data is no longer confined to one area of an organisation, sitting underneath a single purview. As data technology expands its reach, organisations are under pressure to increase data literacy in all job roles through skills like data analytics and data security fundamentals.

The report also showed that eight out of the top 10 courses in EMEA between February and October 2020 were SQL, indicating a growing appetite for fundamental data science skills. Course completions included software craft (27.22%), infrastructure (21.45%), data (16.49%), programming (15.12%), cloud (10.39%) and security (9.34%).

Michael Yoo, Customer Market Leader and GM, technology and developer market, Skillsoft, says the future of work now depends on the ability to navigate the rapidly innovating technology space. “This report provides faint signals that have bearing on what technologists will want to learn in the future,” he says. “We've seen learning needs in software craft, infrastructure, and data lead the globe.”

On the back of the rush to remote working, demand for expertise in DevOps and CloudOps security saw a spike in 2020 – and will remain in hot demand as the workforce continues to navigate a remote work environment and offices are increasingly virtual. Meanwhile, Skillsoft discovered learners’ intensified need to understand processes and methodologies such as Agile and DevOps which have been consumed more frequently than the programming languages themselves.

“The technology world no longer has the luxury of hiring for in-demand skills – upskilling and reskilling are the only sustainable, effective way forward,” concludes Yoo. 

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