January 23, 2019

AWS: Closing the digital skills gaps and how to “experiment wildly” in the cloud

By Priya Kantaria

There are a lot of concerns about AI in particular, and technological developments in general, forcing people out of their jobs, but there is another voice that says jobs are being created that need more advanced skills.

This begs the question: where will this training come from?

Gavin Jackson, Amazon Web Services UK managing director, describes how moving to the cloud has changed the tech world, meaning that cloud computing skills are widely in demand.

“People didn’t understand what they were unleashing with cloud computing, to begin with, and now it’s really like the gold rush,” he says.

“People are trying to enable themselves and reorganise themselves, change the way that the entire business and the fabric of the business develops products to serve their customers to more of a digital form factor.

“All of that is formed in the cloud, built in the cloud, where data is analysed and delivered in the cloud, so it really has become the centre of all things.”

AWS programmes

AWS is offering a set of programmes in tech education in the UK that aim to inspire, train and re-skill across all parts of society, working with The Prince’s Trust and partners like the Ministry of Defence and KPMG to fill the digital skills gap.

AWS Get IT works on inspiring year eight students to go after a career in technology, “helping them imagine what they can achieve by using technology”.

AWS re:Start was launched in 2017 for UK military veterans and their families and gives free entry-level cloud computing and programming skills so they can find entry-level work.

AWS Educate is a self-paced and online learning programme, including an exam and providing sought after AWS certification.

AWS Academy partners with universities running science degrees and trains lecturers to teach students skills to achieve AWS certification alongside their degree.

How did cloud computing change innovation?

Jackson explains how cloud computing made innovation easier for tech entrepreneurs.

“The instant access to almost infinite low-cost computing dramatically lowers the barriers for entry to people with dreams and an idea. In the old days, if you had an idea like Netflix, if you were the founder of Netflix or Airbnb then you wouldn’t have conceived the idea because it just would have been too costly to get the idea off the ground,” he says.

“If you think about something that is a technology platform like Airbnb or Netflix, you’d have to procure hundreds of millions of dollars worth of infrastructure, before you booked your first customer. With cloud computing you can experiment wildly, you can kill your failures really quickly and you can fail fast and fail cheap.”

Since AWS was set up in 2006, cloud computing has become a well-known and widely-applied tool and the workforce is catching up to provide the skills demanded by the market. With over 30,000 live jobs on recruitment sites looking for cloud computing and programming skills, AWS could be on to yet another winner.

Verdict deals analysis methodology

This analysis considers only announced and completed cloud-deals deals from the GlobalData financial deals database and excludes all terminated and rumoured deals. Country and industry are defined according to the headquarters and dominant industry of the target firm. The term ‘acquisition’ refers to both completed deals and those in the bidding stage.

GlobalData tracks real-time data concerning all merger and acquisition, private equity/venture capital and asset transaction activity around the world from thousands of company websites and other reliable sources.

More in-depth reports and analysis on all reported deals are available for subscribers to GlobalData’s deals database.

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