Kubernetes jobs market trends for 2022 Q2
Published in August 2022
What is the average salary for a Kubernetes Engineer?
What all skillsets make for an ideal Kubernetes Engineer?
Which technologies and programming languages are popular in the current job market?
Answers to all these questions and more in our Jobs report for the second quarter of 2022.
Before we begin, a few points worth mentioning:
- At Kube Careers, we solely focus on Kubernetes Jobs.
- We only publish jobs that mention Kubernetes as a requirement and not a nice to have, or a plus.
- The dataset is comparatively small — a total of 93 job descriptions from April to June 2022.
- If a job doesn't have a clear salary range, we discard it. Many job offers don't indicate a salary range, and we think this is not good for engineers looking for work.
- We discarded job offers from recruitment agencies.
- We have analysed listings on platforms used by European and American audiences.
Keep these factors in mind as we dive into the numbers.
You can also download this report as a PDF here.
Table of contents
- Where are the most Kubernetes job offers located?
- What's the salary range?
- Are certifications necessary for getting a Kubernetes job?
- How relevant are CI/CD skills for Kubernetes jobs?
- How important are configuration management tools for a Kubernetes job?
- Where do companies host their clusters?
- Which popular technologies other than Kubernetes should you learn?
- Which programming languages are the most in-demand?
Where are the most Kubernetes job offers located?
In North America.
At least, this seems to be the case for this quarter.
All the regions have good representation, with North America taking the lead with almost 28% of the Kubernetes jobs.
Europe isn't far away with 25%, while remote only jobs represent 23% of the jobs.
The Asia-Pacific region comes in at last, with 22% of the Kubernetes jobs published in this region.
Are most of the job offers always from North America?
In Q2 2021, the Asia Pacific region leads the charts with 35%, Europe with 29%, and North America with almost 26% of the Kubernetes jobs.
In our previous quarterly reports, Europe, North America, and Asia-Pacific have traded the top spot alternatively.
Note: COVID-19 restrictions were lifted at different timelines with different regions, so do take these metrics with a grain of salt.
What about remote jobs?
Currently, the remote jobs scenario looks highly positive.
This quarter, more than 64% of the jobs that we have listed mentioned remote-work of some sort.
This metric is up from 55% in Q2 2021 and from 56% in Q1 2022.
Note that remote-work mentions don't translate to worldwide - work from anywhere jobs.
There exist different tiers of remote work.
Of the jobs that mention remote working, more than 67% of these offer a hybrid working model, which can mean anything from attending a few days of office per week to working in one of the co-working spaces provided by the company.
Also, this quarter, we had 37% (of the total jobs that mention remote work) of the jobs offering remote only work, which means the candidate can work from their place of ease, 100% remote.
What's the overall trend for remote jobs?
In Q2 2021, only 19% of the jobs were remote only, and that too at a time when the COVID-19 restrictions weren't completely lifted in some parts of the world.
What's the salary range?
We have divided the salary ranges into two categories:
- North American Kubernetes jobs (normalized to be in USD), and
- European Kubernetes jobs (normalized to be in EUR).
Salary ranges for Kubernetes jobs based in North America
The minimum salary offered in America, on average, stands at $143,684, while the maximum salary (on average) offered stands at $186,211.
The minimum average salary has increased by almost 12%, and the maximum average salary has increased 7% over Q2 of 2021, which is a positive sign.
The highest salary range for Q2 2022 is between $200,000-240,000, which is also an 8% increase over the highest salary range for Q2 2021.
Salary ranges for Kubernetes jobs based in Europe
The minimum salary offered in Europe, on average, stands at €83,722, while the maximum salary (on average) offered stands at €170,380.
We have recently started analysing the salary ranges for Europe and America differently, so we can't compare these numbers with Q2 2021.
However, the minimum salary range has increased almost 5% over the last quarter, i.e., Q1 2022, which is encouraging.
Note: Europe is a vast, diverse continent with varied costs of living, economies, and technological status.
Thus, we can't be conclusive with these numbers, but we can get a decent representation of the state of salaries in Europe.
Are certifications necessary for getting a Kubernetes job?
The case with certifications is this: very few mentions but always seen as an advantage.
For Q2 2022, there were only 11% job descriptions that mentioned a need for certification.
This is an improvement over Q2 2021, where a measly 5% of the job listings mentioned a requirement for certification.
So, which of the more popular certifications should you consider completing?
AWS certifications are the most popular certifications mentioned in a Kubernetes job description.
This has been the trend in almost all of our quarterly reports.
Of all the job descriptions that mentioned certifications this quarter, more than 60% of these explicitly mentioned AWS certifications as a requirement.
Meanwhile, CKA, Azure, and RHCE certifications represented 30%, 20%, and 10% of the certification mentions.
Thus, if you were to complete just one certification for landing your next Kubernetes job, you know which one to go for.
What's the trend for Kubernetes certifications for Q2 2022?
Kubernetes certifications are often listed in job descriptions as a plus and not a requirement.
A staggering 96% of the jobs that we published this quarter did not mention a requirement for a Kubernetes certification.
This points to companies looking for Kubernetes environment experience over just certifications.
Of the 4% of jobs that mentioned Kubernetes certification as a requirement, the Certified Kubernetes Administrator (CKA) was mentioned the most in job descriptions.
Note: Do remember that only 3 job listings published in the entire quarter mentioned CKA certifications.
Since the sample size is small, we shouldn't derive any conclusions about the popularity of the Kubernetes certifications.
What about the cloud provider certifications?
As for the Cloud provider certifications, AWS dominates the chart, with Azure a distant second and GCP garnering no mentions this quarter.
For Q2 2021, AWS also managed to top the list with the most mentions.
How relevant are CI/CD skills for Kubernetes jobs?
CI/CD methodologies are essential for Kubernetes jobs.
Almost 50% of the job descriptions in this quarter mentioned CI/CD.
What's also interesting to know is that of the jobs that mention CI/CD, more than 89% of these did not specify the methodology and just mentioned the term.
What about the ones that do specify the methodologies?
Considering all the jobs that did specify the CI/CD methodologies, Jenkins was the most popular with more than 43% mentions, with Gitlab and Github Actions coming in at the 2nd and 3rd place with 30% and 14% representation.
How important are configuration management tools for a Kubernetes job?
Configuration management tools are highly relevant.
This quarter, more than 62% of the jobs mentioned some configuration management tool.
This stat is up 5% quarter-on-quarter.
Of all configuration management tools, which one should you learn?
Of all the job descriptions that mentioned configuration management tools, Terraform was specified in a staggering 82% of these.
Terraform also topped the charts for Q2 of 2021.
Ansible is in second place, while the generic term "Infrastructure as Code (IAC)" comes at third place with 44% and 41% representation.
It can be said that:
- Configuration management tool skills are in high demand.
- If you are to learn/gain experience in one such tool, choose Terraform.
How much experience do companies seek?
It varies, but surprisingly, experience isn't mentioned explicitly.
In this quarter, more than 76% of the jobs didn't mention experience.
This has been the case in the last four quarters.
Wherein there isn't an explicit mention of experience in most job listings.
Of the ones that mentioned experience, what seniority are they after?
This quarter, of the job listings that mentioned experience, more than 90% of these required senior-level experience (4-6 years).
The senior-level experience was also the most sought-after in Q2 of 2021.
Also, Mid-level(2-3 years), and Veteran(7+ years) levels of experience, were each mentioned in 4% of the jobs this quarter.
As in Q2 of 2021, no job description mentioned a Junior level(0-1 years) of experience.
Remember, we are talking about explicit mentions of a Junior position here.
Where do companies host their clusters?
Almost 90% of the job listings did mention their infrastructure location, but that doesn't mean there were absolute specifics.
For instance, this quarter, almost 65% of the listings mentioned just the term cloud as their infrastructure location.
And for the ones that mentioned specifics, AWS was mentioned more than 70% of the time.
Meanwhile, Azure and GCP were mentioned at 38% and 31% this quarter.
Azure and GCP have been trading 3rd and 4th positions in almost all of the last 4-5 quarters.
Has the trend been the same quarter-on-quarter?
In Q2 of 2021, the order was the same AWS > GCP > Azure > On-premises.
Conclusions from this analysis are:
- AWS is the undisputed champion regarding the preferred infrastructure location.
- Azure and GCP are the next most preferred infrastructure locations.
- On-premise infrastructure location has been consistent throughout the quarter. It has been floating between the 15-20% range.
Which monitoring stack tool is popular?
In our dataset, only 24% of the job listings mentioned a monitoring tool experience.
This metric is up from 15% in Q2 of 2021.
And, between the job listings that mentioned monitoring tools, Prometheus leads the way with almost 95% representation.
The same has been the case in the last four quarters, wherein Prometheus was mentioned in almost all the listings that cited a monitoring tool experience.
Datadog comes in a distant second, followed by NewRelic, Statsd, Telegraf, Thanos, Nagios.
Call me, maybe?!
Let's be honest here: Nobody likes to be on-call.
But there are times when you are needed to be on-call.
Well, thankfully, not a lot of jobs mention an on-call requirement.
This quarter, only 15% of the job listings mentioned on-call rotation, which increased from 6% in Q2 2021.
Which popular technologies other than Kubernetes should you learn?
The following list is an excellent guide for engineers seeking to round out their skill set.
The most popular choices of technology among Kubernetes engineers are:
- Programming languages: Python, Go and Java.
- Cloud platforms: AWS, Azure and GCP (in that order).
- Containers: Docker.
- Operating systems: Linux.
- Infrastructure as Code: Terraform.
- Database management: PostgreSQL.
- Configuration management: Ansible.
- CI/CD: Jenkins.
It's essential to notice that if you already master Python and AWS, you can confidently apply for more than 60% of job offers.
Which programming languages are the most in-demand?
Almost 74% of the job listings this quarter mentioned at least one programming language, quarter-on-quarter, this has dropped 4%.
Here are the takeaways from our Programming languages analysis:
- Python is the undisputed programming language king. It has topped all of the quarterly charts we have published.
- Go is a close second in demand, and it has also been reflected in the last four quarters that we analysed.
Service meshes, anyone?
Only 8% of the jobs cited a requirement for service meshes.
Of these, Istio and Linkerd garnered four mentions each this quarter, with Consul being mentioned in 3 job listings.
Hopefully, you learned something new from our report.
Every quarter, we try our best to analyse our data so you can derive critical patterns regarding technologies/skills in the current Kubernetes job market.
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