DevOps Academy: How to develop internal talent

The Challenge

Developing an internal talent pipeline for hard-to-fill engineering roles

In order for us to build better products and deliver software more quickly—just like our customers seek to do—we needed to find talent to fulfill growing engineering roles, and at the same time gain valuable insights into how we can improve our products for our customers. As so many in the industry have found, finding experienced engineers proves, time and again, to be a difficult task.

As Pluralsight’s Chief Technology Officer, Chris Tonas, says, “[It’s] hard to find all roles across engineering, to find great talent. It's a challenge, but in the DevOps and cloud engineering space, we found that to be particularly challenging.”

We needed a way to take the great talent we already had, or other great talent we could find outside the company, and transition them into great cloud and DevOps engineers.

But rather than solely relying on—and hoping—to hire new talent that had the skill set we needed, we decided to create an internal pipeline and produce great engineers from our existing talent. 


Who we are

Pluralsight is a tech workforce development company that empowers individuals to advance their career through upskilling and enables organizations to build better tech teams and deliver better products.

Pluralsight by the numbers

founded in 2004


Headquartered in Utah


2,233 employees


Trusted by 70% of Fortune 500 companies

An engine of talent production

“There is a severe lack of supply being created in this particular space of deep cloud knowledge…We realized we're going to have to become our own engine of talent production.” 

Chris Tonas, Chief Technology Officer at Pluralsight

The Solution

Pipeline creation through upskilling

Having helped hundreds of companies stay atop ever-growing tech needs, we turned toward our own products. Enter the DevOps Academy, our initiative to give employees in both tech and non-tech roles the opportunity to effectively communicate with those in engineering roles, add another level of understanding to their current role, and fully transition from their current role to a DevOps Engineer, should they choose to do so. 

The DevOps Academy used the tech skills platform, Pluralsight Skills, with a focus on cloud skills, to take employees from limited technical experience to conversational literacy in DevOps, and employees from a software engineering role to an entry-level DevOps role.

“I feel like I have a better understanding of what it means to really iterate with the software engineers, cloud engineers, and other DevOps engineers to figure out the best solution for a given application,” says Hayden Stanko, a former software engineer who became a DevOps Engineer at Pluralsight. Jennifer Park, a technical writer at Pluralsight, also benefited from participating in the DevOps Academy, saying, “I can have these conversations with DevOps, product managers, and engineers on a different level.”

Through using our tech skills platform and emphasizing cloud skills, two software engineers entered much-needed DevOps engineer roles, and we experienced a CCP exam pass rate of 89%, with nearly half the participants having little to no technical background.


The key benefits of Pluralsight Skills for Pluralsight


47% knowledge application rate

Effective Communication Across Teams

Teams can collaborate better with a one-step-further understanding of DevOps


45% of participants had little to no technical background

Alignment with Company Goals

Curated content focused on advanced upskilling ensures transitions into engineering roles happen faster


89% CCP certification exam pass rate

Use Beyond DevOps

Positive results help establish a model for upskilling in other areas

No experience needed

"[Pluralsight Skills] also allows for accessibility, that you don't have to have a history of walking into server rooms and dealing with physical hardware to learn how to work in the cloud."

Parker Johansen, Technical Lead at The Technology Center of Excellence at Pluralsight

The next steps

While immersing ourselves in our products for the DevOps Academy, we gained a deeper understanding of our customers’ experience, and, as a result, are laying the groundwork for product improvements. 

Through the DevOps Academy, we were able to develop a template for how to create, roll out, execute, and measure the impact of upskilling initiatives—a template that we can use across other areas for further talent creation.

Reach out to your CSM or AE to discover how you too can use Pluralsight Skills to create your own talent development template, fulfill in-demand roles faster, and achieve true tech literacy for your workforce. 

Visibility in Upskilling

"[The DevOps Academy] has given us visibility into each of our products and the strengths they have and the way they can contribute to all the goals we have."

Chris Tonas, Chief Technology Officer at Pluralsight

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