CIOs take on the talent imperative

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Following a year of intense stress and long hours, IT pros are on the move and in search of professional fulfillment, flexibility, and work-life balance. Here, four CIOs share their advice for creating an IT culture tech workers can’t quit.

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With the increase in remote opportunities, highly skilled technical employees have more options than ever when it comes to where they live and work. This can be good news for CIOs—your prospective talent pool just got significantly larger. But the flipside isn’t so great—your competition for talent is now much broader than it used to be. 

I recently spoke with a group of CIOs about some of the major workforce challenges IT executives are dealing with, and this talent migration issue is top of mind. While demand is up, supply isn’t, and there’s a real concern that organizations could lose some of their best employees if they don’t take proactive steps now to shore up the culture and ensure people feel like they’re valued, engaged, and growing. This is why these CIOs are going on offense, making talent the first pillar of their overall IT strategy. 

“CIOs are facing a shifting environment with a rapidly growing economy, millions of unfilled positions, very strong demand for highly skilled employees, and our competition for talent is now global,” says Kimberly Mackenroth, Vice President and CIO of Textron. “Employees need solid reasons to choose to work for our company, including opportunities to grow and to make an impact on the business.”

With bold agendas to tackle and stiff competition vying for IT talent, CIOs don’t have the luxury of waiting it out to see how things go. As John Bresney, EVP & CIO of Selective Insurance, told me, “Transformational initiatives have increased overall demand for talent. Companies need to find creative ways to retain their key talent and attract new talent in these areas or risk having to slow down initiatives due to resource constraints.”

IT workers need a solid reason to stay

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