"Companies are looking for people who can ride multiple horses," says Kevin Haugh, senior director of products at talent management company Workstream. IT people need to have more than one competency, says Haugh, and not just in technology. With the increase in outsourcing, good management skills among permanent employees who work on-site are more highly valued.
Stacey Epstein, vice president of marketing at Success Factors, concurs. Epstein says that, while it’s important to make the most of the talent you have, it’s also critical that you avoid overworking people. "You won't get where you want to go by telling people they need to work another four hours," she says. Managing talent and rewarding people for hitting goals is the way to go.
And it’s more important than ever to keep people happy. Recent interviews with IT managers and talent management executives indicate that a major talent war is occurring in IT. The reasons? Baby boomers are retiring and the educational system is not replacing them fast enough. And the relentless pace of technology creates demand for those well versed in the latest and greatest (AJAX programmers are the current stars).
Yes, as our compensation survey indicates, stress in IT may be high. But when hasn’t it been that way? Working in IT is all about adapting to change, and if our random sample is any indication, InfoWorld’s readers are coping pretty well. They’re even getting paid for the extra effort.