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The Linux Foundation makes record progress in addressing talent shortages

The Linux Foundation summarises the progress made in 2021 towards its goal of ensuring anyone can start an open source technology career.

The non-profit organisation enables mass innovation through open source. It announced a record year in 2021 in terms of helping address the open source talent shortage, with more individuals being trained and certified by the organisation than ever. This included a 50% increase in individuals passing certification exams across all technology focus areas. Linux Foundation Training - Certification is the world's largest non-profit supporting open source education, specifically for Kubernetes and Linux certifications for individuals and businesses.

This year, the Linux Foundation grew its catalogue of expertly designed and curated training courses by 30, including popular developer topics such as DevSecOps, GitOps, Kubernetes, Node.js, RISC-V, Hyperledger, and WebAssembly. These technologies comprise some essential pieces of modern infrastructure and are seeing high demand from developers seeking to boost their knowledge and differentiate themselves to employers.

The organisation says paid course enrolments grew 30% year-over-year, while free Linux Foundation online courses surpassed 2 million all-time enrolments.

Certifications were also top of mind for the open source developer community, as shown by the 50% year-over-year growth in areas such as Linux and Kubernetes. New certification exams launched in 2021 included the Kubernetes - Cloud Native Associate (KCNA) and Certified TARS Application Developer (CTAD), which were designed to help professionals demonstrate their knowledge of important cloud-native technologies - skills that are in the highest demand by employers.

"Increases in training course participation and certification were driven, in large part, by the staggering growth in cloud-native adoption globally," says Linux Foundation senior vice president and general manager, Training - Certification, Clyde Seepersad.

"For example, the Kubernetes project under CNCF recorded a 42% increase in Kubernetes contributors from across 168 countries. Geographies, such as Japan, witnessed even greater growth, with certifications jumping 60% over 2020 levels."

The Linux Foundation Training - Certification also awarded 500 scholarships for training courses and certification exams through its LiFT Scholarship program. In addition, the organisation partnered with other non-profit organisations, including Blacks in Technology, Women Who Code, TransTech Social Enterprises, and Hacking the Workforce, to provide hundreds more training and certification scholarships to their communities.

"The results of our training and certification programs reinforced a key theme for businesses in today's labour market - you can't hire your way out of a talent shortage," says Seepersad.

"To achieve your organisation's technology goals, companies need to upskill existing staff, and hire under-qualified but promising individuals, then provide them with the training to fill the knowledge gaps in the organisation."

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