Blame the C-Suite for Tech Talent Exodus

Image credit: iStockphoto/Gearstd

Digital transformation is in danger, at least from the tech talent point of view. But the blame lies with the C-suite and the senior management.

According to a new study by Ivanti, companies hell-bent on driving their digital transformation plans inadvertently put unrealistic expectations on tech talents. And in a market where tech skills are in red hot demand, it is not surprising that many are walking out of the door.

This has made keeping up with digital transformation (32%) and keeping talent in technical roles (26%) the top challenges for IT departments, said the report. And both are intrinsically linked.

Despite IT departments being seen as critical for company growth and business strategy (61% of respondents said so), they are not getting support for managing the increased workloads. As a result, 72% of respondents reported losing team members, with 41% citing a high workload as the top reason for losing team members.

Other reasons include unrealistic expectations placed on the team (34%), lack of executive support (32%), remote work was not a possibility (28%), executive hesitancy to adopt automation (26%), and lack of critical technology to effectively do their job (24%).

There is also a disconnect between what senior management thinks and what the middle managers believe. In the survey, this disconnect between C-Suite/Vice President and Managers/Directors was made clear with numbers. For example, managers and directors were more likely to report that the IT department was viewed as only a cost center (27%) versus only 19% of C-Suite/Vice President respondents who only viewed IT as a cost center.

Another area of concern is the lack of investment in automation tools despite facts and figures proving that these can alleviate workload pressure. In the study, a majority (55%) of respondents reported automating IT processes saving the IT department 1 - 8 hours per service request; for companies with over 50% of their IT services automated, the time saved per service request jumped to more than 16 hours.

Yet even with the pandemic speeding up the rapid shift to remote work and with 67% of decision-makers reporting they are increasing adoption of automated IT service offerings as a result, only 1% of them have done so.

This adds additional pressure on tech talents who are expected to connect with various devices to corporate networks, data, and services.

“Employees are working differently than they have in years before, and we’ll continue to see an evolution of how people work as we move into the future and beyond the pandemic,” said Nayaki Nayyar, president and chief product officer, Ivanti. “The workloads and pressure to perform that have been placed on IT teams will only continue to increase. The only way to alleviate some of these stresses and retain technical talent is to implement automation into IT services so that team members can focus their attention on activities that drive the business forward and contribute to the business strategy.”

The level of automation can also be correlated with how a company views its IT department. Companies with more than 50% of IT services automated were more likely to feel the IT department is critical to its growth and business strategy (74%). Of this same group, only 32% feel the executive team views IT as only around to troubleshoot hardware or software issues vs. 47% of all respondents.

Image credit: iStockphoto/Gearstd