Mumbai | DELHI: As Indian corporates and governments embrace cloud in a bigger way, technology firms operating in India are looking to build armies of cloud sales professionals to tap into the demand.
From large firms like IBM and Oracle to more specialized players like Red Hat, companies are looking for cloud specialists in the country, currently a very small group of people, creating an arms race for talent.
US-technology giant Oracle has thrown down the gauntlet in India, with its plan to hire 300 people to create a specialized cloud sales force. The move comes as Oracle is gunning for the top spot in the cloud computing space.
“We want to be the No. 1 player in the cloud computing space. So you will see us accelerate our investment and hiring 300 sales people is part of that strategy to sell our range of cloud offerings in the country,” Shailender Kumar, Vice President and Regional Managing Director for Oracle India, said.
Companies across the board are hiring, according to recruitment firms, creating a demand-supply mismatch and, even a price war, for the right talent, even though sales forces are far smaller than the teams that implement the cloud product.
ET counted at least 30 job openings in cloud sales for people with 5-7 years experience on sites such as LinkedIn and Naukri.com. The job openings ranged from companies such as HP, IBM and Google to smaller IT firms such as Sonata Software. The count excludes job openings from Oracle.
“There is a huge demand for such professionals because companies like HP, Microsoft, IBM are aggressively hiring to expand into cloud. Because demand exceeds supply, there is a premium being paid. And getting the supply is a mix of poaching and training,” Shiv Agrawal, founder of HeadHonchos.com and Managing Director of ABC Consultants, told ET.
Agrawal said that a cloud professional with 7-10 years experience could earn between 10-17 lakhs, with packages rising far higher for those with more experience.
Rising demand cannot be filled through just poaching from other companies and will have to be tackled through training, according to industry experts.
“We believe that the rising demand for cloud sales professionals should be fulfilled by re-skilling the current workforce. Companies need to invest in training employees about a range of technologies as new projects demand a combination of all the technologies that cut across all the layers of a company,” Sanchit Vir Gogia, chief analyst and CEO at Greyhound Research, said.
Training firms, which are already seeing a boost from companies looking to skill employees in cloud technologies, are also training the people now needed to sell those technologies in the market.
“Companies want sales people who can cater to cloud technologies and the function of many traditional marketing departments has changed to include a huge emphasis on cloud marketing. Most companies are utilising in-house clouds. Organisations are therefore searching for people who can understand their business model and the vision of the owned cloud,” Rohit Aggarwal, CEO and founder, Koenig Solutions Ltd.