Empowering an enterprise-capable workforce
With the rising demands by the IT industry for an enterprise-capable workforce, higher learning institutions need to place more focus on preparing their students. As enterprises today are in need of capable talents who are able to rise to the challenge and handle real-world scenarios, future-proofing the existing and upcoming workforce is increasingly becoming a crucial aspect for enterprises. In line with this, there is now a need for education institutions to ensure that impending generations graduate with the required skills needed by enterprises.
In response to the above, today, academic programs by major IT vendors seek to provide curriculum to help education institutions keep pace with the demands of the industry. Red Hat, the world’s leading open source solutions provider’s own academic program, the Red Hat Academy is no less different. It aims to incorporate these higher education institutions’ curricular programs with Linux-related content.
Red Hat’s VP of Global Training Services, Ken Goetz has shared that, the popularity of Linux in modern IT has grown, so has the demand for Linux and related skills in the job market. According to him, building these courses so they match the expectations of enterprises, keeping them up-to-date as technology rapidly evolves, and properly supporting them with hands-on labs and exercises can be a complex, difficult, and costly undertaking and this is why we created the Red Hat Academy.
Red Hat’s curriculum has the unique feature of being based upon use cases of thousands of enterprise deployments. This adds a real-world skills element to the curriculum that is infinitely valuable for students and working professionals, alike.
Meeting industry needs
Red Hat’s VP of Pre-sales and Consulting Services in Asia Pacific, Sachin Shridhar is in the unique position to observe skills and expertise that are currently in demand by the industry. He recently shared, “When our customers hire, we noticed changes in their talent requirement – employees are expected to be multi-skilled, unlike before.”
IT professionals used to have to be heavily specialised in one technology like Oracle, Windows, SAP and so on. But this isn’t the case anymore, as Sachin explained.
“Given the pace of change today and how quickly technology evolves and integration is expected to happen, there is need for employees to be multi-skilled at integration which ultimately enables them to enhance their skills over time,” he said.
Aside from that, another trend he discovered is that associates are not just expected to fulfil training requirements once or a few times a year. Instead, training should be more frequent, via online and on a subscription basis, with an element of ‘self-serve’ and ‘self-paced learning’ of the skill they may require.
“Think about how future generations want to consume education – they behave differently. For example, searching on YouTube, joining large online learning sites like edX, Udemy, Coursera – today, to large extent, you need to integrate into these platforms as well,” Sachin said.
He also pointed out, “Whilst building the workforce of the future, organisations should note that open source has become the backdrop or foundation for almost every technology out there.”
Evolving to meet these needs
In light of all the rapid changes in technology, application and consumption behaviour of education, Red Hat had implemented some significant global changes as response to global demand.
Importantly, membership to the Red Hat Academy for qualifying universities is now free, with easy online program enrolment. Academy instructors also will receive free access to online training courses.
Student materials are available in multiple formats now – e-books, printed or online, and there is streamlined access to globally standardised materials through a Web-based order process. Apart from that, the Red Hat Academy currently provide universities with access to their most updated curriculum, as well as instructor support and lab trainings.
Since implementing these changes in early 2016, Red Hat has seen a 273% increase in the number of academic institutions joining the program. Goetz in a recent post shared that, some institutions already teach a version of Linux, but Red Hat Academy students learn the Linux distribution at the centre of solutions that are relied upon by more than 90% of the Fortune 500.
According to him, students further get prepared to earn one of the most sought after certifications in the industry such as the Red Hat Certified System Administrator. Red Hat revealed that in late 2016, 62% of companies using online job boards to recruit for Linux professionals requested Red Hat Certified Professionals.