Skillsoft’s Lean Into Tech Report Equips Leaders to Address the Technology Skills Gap

Digital transformation accelerated amid a turbulent year, illuminating the need for an upskilled, future-fit workforce

BOSTON – January 13, 2021 Skillsoft, a leader in digital learning, training, and talent solutions to help organizations unleash their edge, today released Lean Into Tech: 2020 Tech Skills Trends & 2021 Predictions. As we enter 2021 and beyond, work has irrevocably changed. Following a year that brought a pandemic and an uncertain global economy, the report offers insight into the rapidly shifting technology landscape, the critical capabilities needed to weather the storm, and the skills needed to put organizations ahead in 2021. Skillsoft’s analysis of five million learners provides a deeper understanding of how the confluence of these circumstances will affect the workforce for years to come and signals the rapid changes in technology that organizations must quickly adapt to.

Technology, by nature, is constantly changing; the circumstances of 2020 accelerated that, making it difficult for organizations to keep up. According to a 2020 Brandon Hall Group survey titled, “L&D and the Impact of COVID-19” commissioned by Skillsoft, 45 percent of organizations are planning to increase tech investment to prepare for the future. Technology skills are in high demand, but supply is low – exacerbating an already widening skills gap.

The report captures the collective technology learning needs of five million learners from the technology and developer industry. Using consumption and search patterns from these users across five areas – Software Craft, Programming, Data, Security, and Cloud – the report highlights resulting trends and recommends corresponding skills to develop. The report predicts 2021’s most in-demand tech skills to include:

  • Programming languages like Python
  • Data analytics
  • Data security fundamentals
  • Agile methodologies
  • DevOps and SecOps
  • Cloud fundamentals

“Technology leaders are the driving force for business success,” said Michael Yoo, customer market leader and GM, technology and developer market, Skillsoft. “As we look forward, the future of work depends on the ability to navigate the rapidly innovating technology space. This report provides faint signals that have bearing on what technologists will want to learn in the future. We've seen learning needs in Software Craft, Infrastructure, and Data lead the globe. There is no better time for an organization to fully embrace upskilling its workforce to create a future-ready team.”

When organizations across the globe went remote, a spotlight moved quickly to the need for online security of information. Cybersecurity intrusions are more frequent and the perils more harmful, and safety relies on people as much as it does technology. Skills such as DevOps and CloudOps Security saw a spike in 2020 – and will be in-demand as the workforce continues to navigate a remote work environment and offices are increasingly virtual. Meanwhile, Skillsoft discovered learners’ intensified need to understand processes and methodologies such as Agile and DevOps which have been consumed more frequently than the programming languages themselves.

“The technology world no longer has the luxury of hiring for in-demand skills – upskilling and reskilling are the only sustainable, effective way forward,” continued Yoo. “Investing in your people not only strengthens the workforce but invests in the skills economy and prepares our world for what’s to come.”

Organizations are increasingly data-driven: Skillsoft saw a 1,000 percent increase in courses related to data analysis and data visualization. Data is no longer confined to one area of the organization, sitting underneath a single purview. Data technology spans the enterprise, as such, organizations must increase data literacy in all job roles through skills like data analytics and data security fundamentals.

Download the full Lean Into Tech: 2020 Tech Skills Trends & 2021 Predictions. This report follows the December release of Skillsoft’s Lean into Learning: 2020 Annual Learning Report, which offered leaders insight into trends across technology and developer, leadership and business, compliance, safety, and more.

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About Skillsoft
Skillsoft delivers digital learning, training, and talent solutions to help organizations unleash their edge. Leveraging immersive, engaging content, Skillsoft enables organizations to unlock the potential in their best assets — their people — and build teams with the skills they need for success. Empowering 45 million learners and counting, Skillsoft democratizes learning through an intelligent learning experience and a customized, learner-centric approach to skills development with resources for Leadership Development, Business Skills, Technology and Developer, Digital Transformation, and Compliance.

Skillsoft and SumTotal are partners to thousands of leading global organizations, including many Fortune 500 companies. The company features three award-winning systems that support learning, performance and success: Skillsoft learning content, the Percipio intelligent learning experience platform, and the SumTotal suite for Talent Development, which offers measurable impact across the entire employee lifecycle. Learn more at


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