The number of cloud-based roles almost doubled over the past year, with a 97.73% increase between Q2 2016 and Q2 2017, according to a new report from Experis.

Tech Cities Job Watch Q2 2017 revealed that in the second quarter of 2017, there were 11,917 cloud roles on the market, including both contract and permanent positions. This number is double that of the same period last year. London, Manchester, Bristol and Leeds were found to be the cities with the highest demand.

Cloud-based contract opportunities, recorded at 2,134 in Q2 2017, now represent almost a third of all short-term positions advertised in technology sectors. In comparison, there were 9,783 permanent positions advertised in Q2 2017, representing one in four of all technology jobs advertised across Big Data, Cloud, IT Security, Mobile and Web Development.

Across all five technology disciplines, a year-on-year salary grew 4.2%, reaching an average of £53,113 for an annual salary. Day rates increased 6.26% to £458. Contract opportunities grew by 23.33% to 6,942 roles. In total, there were 40,044 permanent technology positions advertised in the UK, 26.81% more than a year ago.

The average salary rose in each technology sector, with the exception of Mobile, which saw salaries drop by 4.27%

Salaries for cloud specialists increased by 2.71%, with an average day rate of £481. Average annual salaries for permanent cloud professionals increased from £57,331 to £58,885 – the second highest average salary among all disciplines after Big Data.

Tech Cities

London, Leeds and Manchester offered the highest salaries to cloud specialists. Of these three, Manchester saw the largest quarter-on-quarter increase of 9.14%, while London saw the highest year-on-year growth of 6.18%.

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Most permanent roles were advertised and based in London (6,839), with the remaining 2,944 positions spread across the nine other cities.

The most popular skills in the cloud sector were found to be OpenStack and Rackspace; Software as a Service (SaaS) for solutions such as Salesforce.com and Insightly; and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) for technologies including Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services.

According to the report, cloud computing has passed the period of being a top IT trend and has shifted to being an integral part of business processes around the world. It suggests that a skills shortfall in the cloud sector is very unlikely, but that specialists with niche cloud skills will continue to attract higher rates.