Thursday, September 08, 2005

Better times ahead for IT!

A study just released from Robert Half Technology shows that 16% of IT executives are planning to hire IT staff in fourth quarter of 2005, and only 4% are planning on staff reduction. This according to a story released on Cnet today (Study: CIOs to increase hiring). We are entering a period when IT hiring is expected to reach its highest levels since 2002.

What does this mean to us as IT leaders?
  1. We have to make sure we understand who our top performers are. Our top 20% (eagles) need to be challenged, rewarded, and taken good care of. Programs need to be put in place to ensure this. Remember, your competition loves to get their hands on your eagles.
  2. Identify the bottom 10% of your performers. Put programs in place to ensure that you guide them to new opportunities.
  3. Work with the middle 70% to move them up to the top 20%.
  4. Partner with your HR department to ensure that you find good candidates, hire the best, and manage everybody effectively and efficiently. HR is your friend.
  5. When you are looking for people, be responsive and flexible. Great people have many opportunities and closing the deal quickly is the only way get these people on board.
  6. Set clear expectations for your staff. Provide clear vision, mission, strategies, processes, roles and responsibilities. This is more important than ever. People want to know what is expected of them and everybody needs to understand where you want to take your organization.
  7. Provide leadership. When people leave their jobs, it is often due to a bad relationship with, and a lack of confidence in, their manager.
  8. Communicate, communicate, communicate.
  9. Celebrate success!

1..3 – Inspired by Jack Welsh “Straight from Jack”; I like his bell curve identifying top 20% of talents for grooming and ask 10% underperformers to go for alternative careers to achieve efficiency in managing people. I would implement this different than GE, but like the concept.

These all are important points in good and bad times. As we are entering better times, competition will explore any weakness in you ability to manage staff.


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