To keep pace with technological advances, communications service providers' internal network, engineering and IT professionals also are evolving, not only learning new skills but also implementing new practices and processes.
Like their peers in other verticals, operators face an ongoing talent shortage -- especially in specialties such as virtualization, security and networking. To combat this, many work with existing employees, local universities, trade organizations and K-12 facilities to encourage more students to enter the field, as well as closer coordination between academics and real-world requirements and ongoing education for their workforces' internal advancement.
Those already adept in particular disciplines often have their choice of jobs and recruitment firms, especially when this technical know-how is combined with business acumen. Others seeking new opportunities may want to focus on one or more of these hot skills. Which skill sets is your organization seeking? As an employee, what capabilities are you adding to your portfolio? Let us know in comments.
With more than three dozen virtualization standards to address, CSPs expend tremendous resources -- manpower, hours and money -- testing product and vendor interoperability. In order to use best-of-breed technologies, operators must conduct these tests for each upgrade or risk network performance problems. Thus, expertise in interoperability testing is a prerequisite for CSPs today. There is industry movement toward saving operators money and time, and accelerating virtualization usage: The New IP Agency partners with independent testing labs like EANTC to advance the "adoption of open and interoperable virtualized IP networks and provide the industry with information on what solutions work and are most likely to work well within service providers' networks as open source-based networking solutions are adopted," says NIA Director Jeff Hannah.