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Open source and Linux expertise more in-demand than ever

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(Image credit: Shutterstock / Elle Aon)

Hiring people with skills in open-source software suites such as Linux is becoming a priority for more businesses, new research has revealed.

The 2020 Open Source Jobs Report from the Linux Foundation, prepared in collaboration with edX, which is a non-profit online learning platform founded by Harvard and MIT, found 81% of respondents confirmed that hiring open source talent is a priority for them in 2020. 

93% of hiring managers report difficulty finding sufficient talent with open source skills, up from 87% two years ago, showing that qualified open source talent is still in short supply.

Moreover, while open source wasn’t immune to the ill-effects of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, its impact on professionals with open source prowess was limited. As per the survey, only 4% of employers laid off open source professionals due to COVID-19. 

The good news is that hiring is already picking back up, with 37% of hiring managers saying they will be hiring more skilled IT professionals in the next six months.

Not just developers

In 2020, Linux emerged as the most in-demand skill among hiring managers, with 74% of those seeking talent with Linux experience. DevOps, cloud, and security were the other most desirable skill sets that attracted potential employers.

In fact, DevOps emerged the most in demand job role, surpassing developers, for the first time in the history of this report.

While 65% of the surveyed companies are out looking for DevOps talent, 63% were in the market for employees who could architect solutions based on open source software. 

“2020 has been a difficult year for all of us, but it’s encouraging to see that open source continues to provide abundant opportunities,” said Linux Foundation Executive Director Jim Zemlin. 

“The Linux Foundation and our members will continue to work to provide technological advancements that benefit everyone while striving to make open source educational opportunities more accessible.”