With the advent of cloud computing and a multitude of business processes revolving around the cloud’s instant accessibility, the job landscape is shifting for IT professionals.

In fact, many IT job descriptions now read more like requirements for business consultants who use IT as a way to make companies more efficient with data tracking, reporting, and everyday processes.

So, how exactly is the cloud changing IT jobs? And what does that mean for IT job seekers?

1. Less Control Over Technology

With cloud computing, IT staff have less access and control of the technologies they choose to employ.

Control over cloud-based services

This chart from Exin demonstrates the level of control IT departments have over traditional IT systems and cloud-based services.

Before the cloud, each company had to host their own legacy data systems within their own brick-and-mortar locations, and it was the job of the IT department to maintain these systems and servers to prevent crashes and keep them working at optimum level.

Now, they have little to no control over the servers or the software their fellow employees use, and they’re not the ones responsible for handling crashes. Instead, their job is to work on the different softwares selected to make the transfer of information as seamless as possible so the company can operate at optimum level.

Essentially, IT professionals are moving from a maintenance role to the role of a facilitator and consultant, meaning they need to understand basic principles of business efficiency.

2. IT Departments are Being Outsourced

In line with traditional IT employees losing control over their in-house software and server systems, IT departments are being more or less outsourced to Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) companies.

“These companies,” says NetSuite, “like a growing number of other Professional Services firms, are also recognizing that today’s SaaS solutions and cloud computing also help them be more agile while meeting escalating compliance requirements by providing an off-site, back-up and recovery capability.”

This is much cheaper than paying for fully-staffed in-house IT departments—and for IT professionals, it means they will more often than not find themselves working in SaaS companies rather than in a traditional IT maintenance departments.

3. Faster Deployment

Because of all the time and resources it used to take to develop and maintain software (full-time coders, on-site servers, business architects, and user interface designers), the IT world and software development moved rather slowly.

“Cloud will help increase the speed of development and change,” said IBM’s Kevin Daley, who’s also Vice Chair of The Open Group Business Forum. “The business architect will be called upon to ensure the strategic relevancy of transformation in a repeatable fashion as cycle times and rollouts happen faster.”

But because the server problem is taken care of by cloud hosting (cutting a major expense; thousands per month), IT products like software and mobile apps can now be deployed and updated at speeds that were unheard of before, due in part to the reallocation of funds towards development.

In fact, the tech-based startup boom that’s going on right now is due partly to this. SaaS startups can now go from idea to product to market faster than they could before—meaning that IT developers need to make sure they’re staying on their toes with the newest technology updates and working quickly, not shutting themselves off in their cubicle from the start to the finish of their project.

4. Looking Ahead & Providing Business Value vs. Basic Maintenance

As it turns out, moving to the cloud and getting rid of the in-house maintenance responsibilities has been a huge blessing to software and other technology service-based companies.

Without the burden of maintenance on their shoulders, leading IT companies have been able to focus on providing higher value to their customers with better-performing features, more intuitive user interfaces, and analytics sections to help them optimize their business operations.

So instead of eliminating unnecessary IT maintenance jobs, corporate IT firms are simply seeing a shift in what they are hiring IT professionals for: instead of maintenance, it’s for IT-based business strategy, development, and quick deployment. This gives current employees and job candidates the opportunity to advance their careers by learning and employing business-based principles in their jobs.

5. Hiring is Getting Harder for IT HR Staff

According to Wanted Analytics, the hiring scale on a range from 1 to 100 (100 being the most difficult) for job positions that mention the term “cloud computing” is a 72.

This, along with a higher-than-average salary range for a cloud computing professional ($90,650 – $110,800), is reason enough for IT professionals seeking entry-level or management positions within IT to make sure they’re on top of their game and seek out the courses and learning programs they need to stay ahead of the curve.

Learn Cloud Computing & Stay Relevant

Staying ahead of the curve is essential to the success of any IT career – especially now that cloud computing is drastically changing the IT landscape and making everything move faster.

Learning to operate in the cloud gives you the broader, business-based perspective companies are now looking for in IT experts, giving you an advantage over your peers who are having a hard time breaking out of the traditional IT corporate structures.

By earning certifications, like our CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional) program that teaches risk management and security within cloud computing, you’ll be making it easier for IT HR staff to find the quality candidate to fit their job opening.