Employers seek technical talent to handle Linux

The technology age has radically changed the way companies operate. Before, they didn't need to worry about Facebook and Twitter, viewed as mere teen playthings. Now, firms and technical recruiters are racing to find social media professionals. Businesses are gobbling up all the tech talent they can, but the hiring appetite for at least one discipline has still gone unsatiated as of yet: Linux. A new survey showed a vast majority of businesses plan to hire employees who can work with the operating system in the near future.

More are in the market for Linux talent
Linux, while not boasting as much cultural appeal as Apple's iOS operating system, is a hugely influential and popular platform in its own right. As such, businesses are increasing their demand for talent to run the system. The 2013 Linux Jobs Report Survey by the Linux Foundation and Dice, a jobs board online community, found 93 percent of responding hiring managers plan to hire a Linux professional in the next six months.

System administrator was the most sought-after position among hiring managers, according to the survey. Developers and development and operations (DevOps) specialists were also commonly cited needs.

"The unprecedented demand for Linux professionals represents Linux's growth across industries and the increasing relevance of the collaborative development model," said Amanda McPherson, vice president of marketing and developer programs at The Linux Foundation.

Recruitment a challenge
In the rush to locate and hire Linux professionals, many businesses are running into obstacles. In 2011, 80 percent of hiring managers said finding Linux talent was difficult and nearly 90 percent said the same in 2012.

The challenges firms face could be partly due to the market for Linux talent becoming increasingly competitive. This underscores the need for companies to work with technical recruiters that can navigate the shifting landscape of Linux talent recruiting. Seventy-five percent of Linux professionals said they received at least one call from a recruiter during the past six months. These specialists said they were offered above average salaries and bonuses.

Business working with accomplished technical recruiters might also get a better chance at recruiting Linux employees who are ready for a change of scenery: 35 percent of professionals said they were ready to switch employers this year.