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Skills Needed for Building Clouds

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As many have read in the past, VMware is hiring like mad for the cloud team. We continue to expand at a rapid pace to meet all of the demand around the world for our cloud products and services. As I got out and recruit more people for the team I often get asked what skills one needs to build or architect a cloud. Even customers that we pitch cloud to on the service provider or enterprise side ask what kinds of people or skills they need in order to start building their own clouds. I usually break it down into the 3 hardest parts of building up a cloud service:

1) Networking – Networking is about the most complex piece of VMware’s cloud tools. Our product manager likes to call it “flexible” which it really is (and powerful) but it’s also complex. Giving end users the ability to configure their own network segments on-the-fly complete with VLAN IDs is something that would scare most network admins and yet this is something that we need to tackle to get to “true cloud”. I usually suggest to customers that they go and engage their network team early on in the cloud building process and then recruit the best of the networking engineers to be on the cloud team.

2) Storage – Storage is another area that can get complex. How do you make it so end users don’t have to care about the underlying storage and yet land on the right volume from a performance perspective? And don’t even get me started on movement of data from one place to another or backup. All of these things are going to require an ace storage engineer on the cloud team.

3) Programming Skills – You don’t need some uber code monkey on the team but you do need someone that understands APIs, how to use them, and how you would go about plugging everything together. Automation is the name of the game in the guts of cloud and that’s why tools like BMC Atrium Orchestrator, VMware vCenter Orchestrator, and HPOO have become centerpieces in the cloud. Most of these are based on Java or Javascript so find someone that can at least start there. And since nearly everything in cloud land seems to be going the path of REST it would be great to get someone that knows that and XML really well.

So those are my 3 core skill sets that I tell people to go out and find. There are more you could add to the list such as security or billing or portal design but those can be from people that augment the core team. If you find people in the above core skill sets then you’ll be well on your way to architecting a successful cloud buildout.

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Published at DZone with permission of Mike Dipetrillo, DZone MVB. See the original article here.

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