Good people skills aren't to be downplayed, data center insiders say. "When I think of a strong data center manager, communications and people management skills are way up there," says Jill Eckhaus, president of Afcom, an association for data center professionals. "The data center world is changing at rapid speed, and being able to manage that means keeping a structured environment. And that requires communications."
Good people skills are imperative, agrees PwC's Regan. Even if data center professionals aren't communicating with the business, he says, there's a significant amount of communications required inside the IT organization.
With so many data center skills to hone, this is indeed an opportunistic time for IT professionals, says Andreas Antonopoulos, senior vice president with Nemertes Research.
"So for those out of a job, one of the things to think about is taking a new direction and really focus on the exciting things happening in IT," he says. "That's my message of hope."