Coding skills are the keys to longevity in the IT industry today as developers who can code in cloud solutions become increasingly in demand.

This is according to veteran Lumify Work (formerly Auldhouse) trainer Chris Barker, who says coding, including scripting, is probably the single most important skill shortage in the foreseeable future for the IT industry in New Zealand.

"Cloud skills in general are trending more towards developers who can code solutions. This includes industry trends like DevOps, which are accelerated by cloud-based infrastructure deployed using code," says Chris.

"Architecturally, the IT industry is trending towards no-ops serverless development platforms to deliver services often in cloud-based resources. I am seeing a trend in demand for programming languages, such as Java® and Python, as well as scripting in PowerShell and Bash.

"Having coding skills - at a minimum in PowerShell or Bash - are the keys to longevity in the IT industry at the moment.

"Meanwhile, the proliferation of micro-services in containers, managed by Kubernetes, will be key for the short to medium term as applications trend away from traditional server platforms."

Chris has been a trainer since 1989 and been an instructor at Lumify Work (formerly Auldhouse) for over 16 years specialising in coding and cloud computing technologies. He therefore has an in-depth and first-hand view of how the demand for these skills are evolving.

His work in cloud computing dates from the early days - before most people knew what cloud computing was and boasts over a decade of experience in Microsoft Azure.

"I've been using Azure almost since day one," he says.

He became one of just two certified Google Cloud trainers in the country - along with fellow instructor, James Finley. The pair started delivering the first ever official Google Cloud Platform courses in New Zealand in March 2018. Since then, Chris has delivered many sessions across New Zealand and Australia for large enterprise customers.

Already an Azure and Google Cloud developer stack trainer, Chris has also been teaching Amazon Web Services (AWS) courses since 2020. He recently completed a technical review of Microsoft Official Curriculum for C# and stays up to date with the most recent development courses.

Image: chris barker auldhouse

Essential skills

He believes cloud skills are essential for anyone wanting to build a career in IT.

"Cloud computing is changing the way we work. The market is ripe for people trained in this technology to meet the changing environment."

Becoming certified in a cloud platform is a great opportunity to IT professionals to differentiate themselves, says Chris.

"Certification from a vendor, like AWS, Google or Microsoft, is a great way to demonstrate proficiency in a technical area."

On the coding front, Chris teaches a raft of programming languages, including Python, PowerShell, Transact-SQL, HTML, CSS and JavaScript and has even developed his own Java and C# courses.

On top of that Chris currently teaches on all versions of Microsoft SQL Server, and has also branched into personal development courses, having developed his own train the trainer and technical writing courses.

Passion for teaching

So, what drives his passion for teaching across such a diverse field of topics?

Says Chris: "A teacher cannot make a learner learn - the learner has to do that; but a teacher can help motivate a learner learn. The success of that motivation is what compels me to come to work every day. I gain enormous satisfaction from helping people learn and making New Zealand more productive."

This passion for training has extended to Chris' charity work.

"A few years ago, with the help of Lumify Work (formerly Auldhouse), I spent time in an orphanage in Kolkata, India. A charity I worked with had raised more money than they had pledged to the orphanage, so I was able to help the orphanage purchase, configure and train how to use new computers."

Outside of work, Chris spends a lot of time with his grandchildren enjoying them develop and learn.

Why Lumify Work for cloud training?

Says Chris: "The trainers at Lumify Work (formerly Auldhouse) have more experience in cloud computing than most, if not all, service providers in New Zealand. We have certifications and endorsements from cloud vendors, while also being independent. Our trainers can provide best-of-breed advice on which offerings from which vendor will best suit a project’s requirements."

To find out more about Cloud Computing solutions at Lumify Work, click here.

- Banner photo by Chris Ried on Unsplash

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