5 steps to transform IT talent strategy for the future: IDC

5 steps to transform IT talent strategy for the future: IDC

Recruiting and retaining the right mix of talent is vital in the digital age. Consider these five steps to rethink your talent practices and prepare for the future of work

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IT talent future

Digital transformation talent-sourcing strategies must be a complete departure from the traditional, reactionary recruiting model of source, hire, and repeat  – in favor of proactive, data-driven robust talent practices.

Companies focused on achieving such a worksource transformation make talent a competitive advantage. As a result, business objectives are better met because the right mix of talent is available.

[ Want advice and data for IT hiring managers and job applicants? Download our free eBook: IT job searching in 2019: A practical guide. ]

There are five key steps to bring your organization through a worksource transformation and prepare for the future of work:

  1. Understand the outlook for digital talent
  2. Determine future talent requirements
  3. Create a skills inventory
  4. Make a talent-sourcing plan
  5. Align, retain, and manage talent

How to rethink  IT talent practices 

I’ve outlined these steps in greater detail here to help execute a proactive, thoughtful plan to attract and cultivate talent to support digital transformation initiatives.

1. Understand the outlook for digital talent

Will your skills gaps delay product releases or cause additional costs?

Digital skills gaps have a major impact on organizations, from delayed project plans and product/service releases to additional costs incurred, lost revenue, or lost business. This increases the importance of strategic skills development. By increasing the breadth of skills among IT professionals, IT can be integral to business success. To create a strategic skills development program for IT:

  • Consider business and IT goals
  • Identify critical skills and skills with increasing importance
  • Determine current skill levels
  • Leverage a broad range of development tools (from individual learning plans to stretch assignments and projects.)

To ensure success, help employees apply new skills, or the skill will atrophy and the employee will move on.

2. Determine future talent requirements

Determining your talent requirements and strategy means a careful assessment of current and future projects, needs, and roles, as well as training opportunities and skills. Before you can assess talent requirements, you should have a list of future capabilities your organization is focusing on creating.

Assess what roles will be in demand in your organization. This is an exercise to assess the importance of roles in the IT organization both now and in the future, as well as strategies to help you place the right resources into training and recruitment.

[ Read also: 6 critical IT skills for the next decade: Bay Area CIO of the Year winners share. ]

3. Create a skills inventory

Digital transformation skills could be acquired through employee training, by hiring new employees with the needed skill sets, or via consultants with the ability to both help build your DX systems and simultaneously train your staff on the needed technologies.

Create a skills inventory prior to finalizing the technologies to be used within your digital initiative.

First and foremost, create a skills inventory prior to finalizing the technologies to be used within your DX initiative. If you take this “skills first, technology second” approach, you may find existing internal competencies that can inform your decision about which technologies to use within your DX toolset. The skills inventory, most easily created with the cooperation of human resources, should ideally contain the following components:

  • Technical skills related to their current job role
  • Dormant skills, where they have significant prior experience and expertise
  • Professional certifications
  • Non-technical/business experience

Now, how will you source needed talent? Let’s explore:

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Meredith Whalen is IDC’s Chief Research Officer and member of the senior management team. She leads IDC's worldwide research organization, product management, marketing and client services functions. Ms. Whalen sets the direction and agenda for IDC's worldwide research products, fosters innovation, and ensures IDC clients have a valuable, personalized, and engaging experience.

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