Major Hiring Initiative at Microsoft for 2011

Monday, 28 February, 2011

Microsoft confirmed with they are looking to fill a wide range of technical positions across key groups.  Their focus on cloud computing and mobile development (both smartphones and tablets) is generating a significant, ongoing demand for fresh talent.

Software engineers, program management engineers and software testing engineers are being sought in the United States.  Their gaming division is looking to add software engineers as they pursue development of a new version of the popular Halo title.

Microsoft confirmed with that around 2,400 positions are to be filled in software engineering and research along with another 400 in general IT positions.  Whether you have experience or not, we strongly suggest obtaining GogoTraining online technical training in order to beef up your resume and make you more hirable for employers like Microsoft.

New Report Shows Pay & Job Growth in Key IT Skills

Friday, 25 February, 2011

High growth in demand and compensation for non-certified IT skill sets has occurred for four straight quarters and is projected to continue, outpacing certified skills which have been experiencing comparatively anemic activity in the same timeframe, according to a new report by Foote Partners.

Factors cited as responsible for the growth include a focus on skill-based acquisition (creating more contract and consulting positions), increasingly distributed IT responsibilities in organizations, and the evolution of “hybrid IT/business professionals.”

“Technology and business skills have in effect collapsed into each other, creating legions of what our firm refers to generically as hybrid IT/business professionals.  New hybrid jobs and job titles have been created throughout the enterprise,” said David Foote, co-founder and CEO of Foote Partners. “Globalization and competitive pressures have accelerated the popularity of hybrid IT/business professionals and in turn energized market demand and interest in paying cash premiums for hundreds of certified and non-certified IT skills.”

Foote said the economic recession had a hand to play in the skill-based approach and rise in hybrid positions yet the story of evolving the IT workforce started earlier. “The truth is that IT and business leaders have been struggling with transforming the IT workforce for years, trying to make it more agile, flexible, nimble, whatever you want to call it, said Foote. “What the recession did was help leaders get ‘unstuck.’  More focused and motivated.  The pressure to get on the other side of this transition is enormous.”  Foote mentions the “end game” is to find a way to “react quicker, execute faster and more predictably.”

Of the certifications showing continued growth in worth, VMware is at the top showing an average compensation premium of 8.5%.  As virtualization and other areas tied to Cloud Computing grow, relevant certifications will continue to rise in value commensurately.  Other certifications seeing rise in value include those from Red Hat and Oracle.

Non-certified skills which saw a sustained lift for four consecutive quarters include database, application development tools, SAP/ERP, Web/e-commerce and methodology and process management.

GogoTraining provides outstanding quality technology and management training at an affordable price.  IT and technical management professionals of all stages in experience and academic background are encouraged to meet the needs of today’s job market, ensure longevity and increase your chances for above-average compensation by identifying a training path and getting started with GogoTraining today.

Up-and-Coming Certifications as Data Center Jobs Grow

Tuesday, 22 February, 2011

There is a myth persisting where it comes to data center jobs.  Those willing to understand the true landscape stand to gain a great deal in the job market.

The myth is that data center jobs are going away as enterprises move to the Cloud.  It isn’t true.  Gartner analyst Dave Cappuccio sets us straight in pointing out that “when virtual infrastructures are using SAN’s, and Fiber Channel is running over Ethernet, who has responsibility for the overall storage environment; the network team, storage team, virtualization team, or server team?  All of the above.”

New recruits able to meet the demands of tomorrow’s data centers are needed.  Dr. Mickey Zandi points out that while “data center hiring isn’t in crisis yet, it’s already difficult to find qualified people.”  Consolidation of systems such as storage, network and computing save the data centers money but increase the qualification needed from employees. 

 Zandi recommends companies invest in the training needed to deal with these more advanced environments.  He points out that certifications will increase in importance, such as cloud-related certifications from Cisco, EMC and VMWare, and he recommends that workers do more training, research and learn other domains.

Learn more about IT certification paths for key technologies.

How to Leverage ITIL for Success in the Cloud

Monday, 21 February, 2011

While heading to the Cloud may mean being able to outsource a number of infrastructure headaches, one responsibility remains squarely on the shoulder of any cloud-bound business: data management. Wherever your data is and by whom it is handled are separate issues from how it is managed.

Arthur Cole, writing for IT Business Edge, shows how movement to the cloud is introducing a more sophisticated, complex challenge where it comes to data management.  One such area where that challenge can be successfully addressed is using ITIL, or the Information Technology Infrastructure Library.  ITIL has successfully carved out space as a leading best practice documentation set by which professionals involved in IT service management can gain qualification.

Among the many definitions embodied by ITIL is the Business Service Management (BSM) specification.  Vikas Aggarwal, CEO of management firm Zyrion, asserts that many management platform vendors are working to retrofit their products in order to support the BSM spec.  “Business Service Management correlates data from different parts of the IT infrastructure and provides a service-oriented context,” says Aggarwal (in Cole’s article).  “That is the reason why BSM is such a key component in virtual and cloud environments.”

As businesses continue a growing mass movement toward the Cloud, disciplines such as ITIL will continue to be adopted throughout the industry.  As enterprises launch ITIL initiatives attached to their greater Cloud-based aspirations, professionals with ITIL certification are sure to thrive.

GogoTraining provides ITIL v3 Foundation and v3 Intermediate training courses.  They are online, self-paced and affordable.  Be sure to consider aquiring an ITIL certification if you are at all involved in IT service management (ITSM).

ITIL v2 to v3 Bridge Soon to End

Friday, 18 February, 2011

The U.K. Office of Government Commerce (OGC) began phasing out v2 publications and qualifications for ITIL in June of 2010.  The formal movement from v2 to v3 continues through June 30, 2011 when the availability of the Manager’s Bridging qualification ends.  At that point, ITIL will be offered strictly in the v3 format of qualification.

Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL), the professional best practice definition for IT service management, is a valuable addition to anyone who is responsible for information technology service management.  There are four exam levels: Foundation, Intermediate, Expert and Master. 

Get ITIL Foundation and Intermediate training courses from GogoTraining, offering outstanding instruction from industry experts such as Neal Rowland, Sue Southern, and Helen Morris.

Have you updated to v3 yet?  Have you obtained your ITIL certification?

Mobile Development, Cloud and Security Needed ‘aSAP’

Thursday, 17 February, 2011

The latest large employer looking for mobile developers is SAP, one of the leading providers of business software.  Their model of how they meet market demands involves their Global Business Incubator, which essentially is a venture developer that creates nearly autonomous teams of people to act like a start-up company.  These teams are tasked with fulfilling a specific need in the market.

One such new team is the Consumer Mobile Initiative focused on “leveraging consumer’s adoption of smartphones and SAP technology to redefine consumer shopping experience in and around the store” (per many of the current SAP job postings for developers).  The new team has already developed market pilots with a handful of leading retailers and consumer product concerns in the American and European markets.

Specific areas of growth in SAP will be mobile development, cloud computing and security as they continue to pursue development using their Global Business Incubator model.

Those interested in meeting the need of SAP and other enterprise software providers in these growing areas can make use of IT training courses from GogoTraining, such as:

4 Ways to Keep Your IT Job this Year

Wednesday, 16 February, 2011

If there was ever a time to do an awareness check on your situation and make sure your career – and employment – is in the “safe and moving forward” zone, it is now. 

“In this economy” has become the preamble to all sorts of reminders of good advice on how to survive and thrive.  Let this be another one!  With that said, here’s four ways to keep your job and maybe even do a little advancing this year:

Dust off your communication skills.  It’s time to start speaking up in those horrifying status meetings.  A sure sign of being overlooked by management is to glaze over like a donut in the back of the room while they drone on about what features are being pushed to phase two.  Ask questions, make suggestions, and bring new ideas.  It matters less what you say and more that you try.  Trying gets noticed, and the noticed get remembered.

Improve your visibility.  Meet and converse regularly with the key decision makers in your department.  Ask your boss how else you can help.  Keep your ears out for opportunities to pitch in on other projects.  Keep the project manager updated on your status.  Be positive in all interactions while you’re at it.

Ask for feedback – and use it.  Ask your project manager and/or boss how you’re doing.  Ask what can be improved or what skill sets your department needs to sharpen or gain.  If you’re not sure how to obtain those skills, ask for training.  Even if you are sure, ask for training.  If you get feedback of a personal nature, do your best to make the changes suggested (or implied).  Overall, it is important to show that you are acting on feedback instead of just soliciting it.

Continually educate yourself.  Start by making sure you are staying current in you field.  It could be as simple as attending the right conference and taking a few online courses each year to stay up on trends and keep sharp on new industry developments.

Next, look to add to your skills.  A great way to add texture to your skill set is by obtaining project management skills.  The new protocol in IT as of 2011 is to diminish costs and increase efficiency, and producers who are trained in project management are sure bets on how to do that.  Why?  Because chances are high that a project could be taken on by as little as one to three people and there aren’t enough project managers to be had for such small teams.  If you’re a hardware or development geek who was just handed a two-week or two-month project to work on you need to be your own project manager – and you better know how to do it well.

GogoTraining can help with a catalog of over 140 outstanding IT training courses and a free library of podcasts regarding IT topics (with over 500 entries).  Some particularly hot areas include:

Clearing the Clouds from SaaS, PaaS and IaaS

Monday, 14 February, 2011

Sometimes it seems like the IT industry was the inventor of the acronym, with a new one getting created every two minutes.  Enter Cloud Computing and a host of new and fun abbreviations that can get confused or switched around.

Adron Hall offers a simple run-down (and introduction for some) on three important acronyms in Cloud Computing that are used to represent three general areas in the Cloud:

Software as a Service (SaaS): Perhaps the most commonly heard and understood of the three, SaaS is a service that is provided by any sort of entity – from a small group up to a government – that provides software to the client.  That software could be delivered in any way; internally or from a provider/vendor entity to a user/contracting entity.

Platform as a Service (PaaS): Somewhat less heard-of is the concept of delivering a platform wherein clients can develop software and re-deploy it either internally, over the Internet or via other Cloud environments.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): This entails an entity providing networking fundamentals such as load balancing, routing, virtualized OS hosting, content delivery networks, computer networking, backup, etc.

Interested in the Cloud?  Check out what GogoTraining offers for training in Cloud Computing, ITIL training, and project management training.

Geek Trivia: Which Company?

Wednesday, 9 February, 2011

Ok, time for another Geek Trivia.  This time we’ll make it easier on you!

Which enterprise hardware and software company was founded in 1977 under a different name than we know it today?

Know the answer? Post it here as a comment.

The first right answer gets a free T-Shirt of YOUR CHOICE from We’ll post the answer and winner soon, so subscribe to the blog!

Business Intelligence Critical for CIOs

Wednesday, 9 February, 2011

CIOs stated increasing enterprise growth, cost reduction and new customer development as three focal areas for 2011, according to recent research from Gartner.

A priority on improving business intelligence (BI) was expressed in Gartner’s 2011 CIO Agenda survey.  “Business intelligence is appearing fairly rapidly, and it’s been number one for several years,” said John Roberts, an analyst with Gartner. 

CIOs are turning to BI as one of the critical tools for obtaining goals.  The stakes are higher with companies increasingly tying CIO compensation to things like customer satisfaction and systems reliability.  Business intelligence helps ensure the risks CIOs and businesses will need to take are made in a more informed manner with the right information at the right time.

GogoTraining offers the following Business Intelligence (BI) training courses: