10 Must-Have Cloud Engineering Skills for IT (Plus 15 Additional Skills!)
In today's ever-evolving tech landscape, cloud engineering has emerged as one of the most sought-after IT careers.
Because a cloud engineer is responsible for designing, implementing, and managing cloud infrastructure and services, this involves selecting the right cloud platforms, configuring networking, ensuring security and compliance, and optimizing resource usage for scalability and cost-efficiency.
In this article, we'll explore the fundamental skills every aspiring cloud engineer should possess and why staying updated in this field is crucial. Plus we’ll discuss how QuickStart’s Cloud Engineering Bootcamp could assist you with building these skills for a successful cloud engineering career.
10 Required Cloud Engineering Skills for IT
1. Cloud Service Providers
Major cloud service providers, such as AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, and Linux, are pivotal in the cloud engineering landscape. Proficiency in one or more of these platforms is essential. Earning cloud provider certifications not only validates your skills but also opens doors to exciting career opportunities.
2. Understanding Virtualization
Virtualization is the foundation of cloud computing. Understanding concepts and technologies like VMware and Hyper-V is crucial as they enable the efficient allocation of resources in a cloud environment.
3. Networking Basics
Networking knowledge is vital for cloud engineers. Concepts like IP addresses, subnets, and routing are essential for configuring and securing cloud networks. Understanding Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) or Virtual Network (VNet) is also important.
4. Security and Compliance
Security is paramount in the cloud. Cloud engineers must grasp security best practices, including identity and access management (IAM). Familiarity with compliance frameworks like GDPR and HIPAA is crucial for ensuring data protection.
5. Automation and Scripting
Automation is key to efficient cloud management. Learning scripting languages like Python and PowerShell allows you to automate various tasks, saving time and reducing errors in cloud environments.
6. Containers and Orchestration
Containers, Docker, and container orchestration tools like Kubernetes are integral to modern cloud engineering. Understanding how to leverage these technologies enhances application scalability and deployment efficiency.
7. DevOps Practices
DevOps practices facilitate seamless collaboration between development and operations teams. Knowledge of CI/CD pipelines and automation tools streamlines application development and deployment in the cloud.
8. Scalability and Load Balancing
Scalability is essential for cloud applications. Cloud engineers should know how to implement load balancing techniques and leverage auto-scaling solutions provided by cloud platforms.
9. Monitoring and Troubleshooting
Monitoring cloud resources is critical to ensure their optimal performance. Familiarity with cloud monitoring tools and troubleshooting practices helps identify and address issues promptly.
10. Continuous Learning and Certification
The cloud landscape is constantly evolving. Encourage yourself to pursue continuous learning and certifications to stay updated and competitive. QuickStart offers excellent resources for further learning and certification.
BONUS: 15 Additional Skills for Success
Remember, the specific skills required may vary depending on the cloud platforms and industries. Continuously updating your skill set is essential for long-term success as a cloud engineer.
Let’s explore 15 additional cloud computing skills that might contribute to your success in an IT position.
11. Database Management
Database management is a critical skill for cloud engineers as it involves the efficient storage and retrieval of data in cloud-based applications. Understanding both SQL and NoSQL databases is essential because they serve different purposes and have various use cases. SQL databases are structured and ideal for relational data, while NoSQL databases are more flexible and suitable for unstructured or semi-structured data. Proficiency in managing these databases ensures that cloud applications can scale effectively and maintain high performance.
12. Serverless Computing
Serverless computing is a paradigm that eliminates the need for managing servers, allowing cloud engineers to focus on code rather than infrastructure. Familiarity with serverless computing platforms like AWS Lambda and Azure Functions is crucial for optimizing cloud applications for cost-efficiency. In serverless environments, code is executed in response to events or triggers, and users are billed only for the actual compute resources used during execution.
13. Infrastructure as Code (IaC)
Infrastructure as Code (IaC) is a fundamental skill for cloud engineers that involves defining and managing infrastructure using code. Proficiency in IaC tools like Terraform, AWS CloudFormation, or Azure Resource Manager enhances infrastructure management efficiency and reproducibility in cloud environments. With IaC, cloud engineers can define infrastructure configurations as code, making it easier to provision and scale resources.
14. Cloud Cost Management
Cloud cost management is a vital skill for cloud engineers responsible for optimizing spending in cloud environments. Businesses using the cloud often face unexpected costs due to improper resource allocation and usage. Cloud engineers must understand cost management tools and practices to track and control expenses effectively. They need to set up budget alerts, analyze usage patterns, and identify opportunities for cost optimization, such as using reserved instances or spot instances.
15. Container Orchestration Skills
Container orchestration is a critical aspect of cloud engineering, enabling the efficient deployment and management of containerized applications. Understanding container orchestration platforms like Amazon ECS, Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS), or Kubernetes is advantageous. Container orchestration simplifies tasks like scaling, load balancing, and rolling updates for containerized applications.
16. Multi-Cloud Skills
As some organizations utilize multiple cloud providers or adopt a multi-cloud strategy, cloud engineers with expertise in working across different cloud environments are invaluable. Multi-cloud skills involve understanding the nuances and unique offerings of various cloud providers and effectively managing applications and resources across them. This skill set allows organizations to avoid vendor lock-in, enhance redundancy, and optimize costs by selecting the best services from each provider.
17. Server and Network Administration
Strong foundations in server administration and networking principles are beneficial for cloud engineers, especially when dealing with hybrid cloud solutions. Server administration skills encompass tasks like server provisioning, configuration, and maintenance, which are essential for managing cloud-based virtual machines.
18. Compliance and Governance
Knowledge of cloud governance frameworks and compliance standards, such as the Center for Internet Security (CIS) benchmarks or NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) guidelines, is vital, especially for organizations with strict regulatory requirements. Cloud engineers need to ensure that cloud deployments align with these standards to maintain data security and compliance.
19. Cybersecurity Awareness
Staying updated on cloud security best practices, threat detection, and incident response is critical in the increasingly secure cloud environment. Cloud engineers should be aware of emerging security threats and vulnerabilities specific to cloud technology. They must implement robust security measures, including encryption, access controls, and intrusion detection systems, to safeguard cloud resources and data.
20. Big Data and Analytics
Proficiency in cloud-based data analytics and big data tools is valuable for processing and analyzing large datasets in the cloud. Cloud engineers with these skills can leverage platforms like AWS Glue, Azure Data Lake, or Apache Spark to extract insights from massive amounts of data.
21. AI and Machine Learning
As AI and machine learning applications become more common in the cloud, cloud engineers should understand cloud-based ML platforms like AWS SageMaker or Azure Machine Learning. These skills allow cloud engineers to deploy and manage machine learning models and integrate them into cloud applications.
22. Cloud-Native Development
Familiarity with cloud-native development practices, including microservices architecture and serverless patterns, can help cloud engineers create efficient and scalable applications optimized for cloud environments. Cloud-native development emphasizes building applications that take full advantage of cloud services, enabling agility, scalability, and resilience.
23. Disaster Recovery and Setup
Knowing how to set up effective disaster recovery and backup solutions in the cloud is crucial for business continuity. Cloud engineers should be skilled in designing and implementing disaster recovery plans that minimize downtime and data loss in the event of outages or disasters.
24. Communication Skills
In addition to technical expertise, cloud engineers need strong soft skills to thrive in a dynamic and collaborative field like cloud engineering. Effective communication is essential for conveying complex technical concepts to non-technical stakeholders, facilitating teamwork, and building strong working relationships with colleagues and clients.
25. Customer Service and Client Management
For cloud engineers in client-facing roles, strong customer service and client management skills are essential for building and maintaining client relationships. These skills involve understanding client needs, providing timely and effective solutions, and ensuring client satisfaction.
Learn these Skills — and More — with QuickStart
Consider enrolling in QuickStart’s Cloud Engineering Bootcamp to learn the skills today’s IT employers want to see. Our program, including mentorship sessions and career services, equips you with the knowledge and hands-on experience needed to excel in the dynamic field of cloud engineering.
Stay ahead in the IT industry by continuously enhancing your skills with QuickStart. Contact an admissions advisor to start your cloud engineering journey today!