EDITOR ’ S QUESTION
HOW CAN CIOS REMAIN INNOVATIVE TO ENSURE THEY RETAIN THEIR TOP TECHNICAL TALENT ?
CIOs are spending more time on innovation , with three-quarters stating they have increased innovation efforts , according to the 2021 Global CIO Survey from Logicalis , a global provider of IT solutions .
The study , which questions 1,000 CIOs from around the world , finds that despite a strong focus on innovation , just 27 % of CIOs describe it as part of their company culture . The research suggests a lack of innovation embedded in company culture and organizational willingness to evolve and adopt modern technologies .
But is this hesitancy to expand innovation across the business impacting on an organization ’ s ability to retain its top tech talent ? to work alongside more junior staff to help them overcome any challenges they might encounter and to grow professionally .
“ The way a CIO stays in touch with their team also needs to evolve as that team grows . The techniques that worked when the team numbered 20 to 50 people will need to be adjusted when numbers scale to a couple of hundred .
“ Another step CIOs can take to help to retain talent is to keep in place the flexible and remote working measures that became a part of daily life during the COVID lockdowns . Many people are attracted by the ability to split their time between home and the office and locking this in as a permanent feature will be a positive move .
We asked four industry experts how CIOs can remain innovative to ensure they avoid this problem .
Nicholas Benjamin , Nintex Senior Vice President of Engineering , told us : “ In the current business climate with a critical shortage of skilled people in the IT sector , retaining top talent should be a CIO ’ s top priority . Positioning their organization as one that can provide a long and fulfilling career has never been more important .
“ CIOs also need to be fully engaged with their staff and have a clear picture of how fulfilled they are currently feeling . If an individual feels tightly connected to their organization and shares in its long-term mission , they are much more likely to remain in their role .
“ It is also important to ensure that an organization ’ s top talent is offered on-going mentoring and development opportunities . Senior people should be encouraged
“ Flexibility should also be in place when it comes to the hours worked . Some people find they are more productive at night or early in the morning . CIOs should make it clear that it doesn ’ t matter when work is completed as long as agreed deadlines are met .
“ Employee mental health should be another area of focus for CIOs , in conjunction with their HR departments . People need to feel they are free to request assistance and support when it ’ s needed without fearing any recrimination or penalty .
“ When it comes to retaining top staff , CIOs also need to realize they are in competition not just with other IT firms or departments , but potentially with everything from whisky distilleries to farms . Smart people often look to make a complete career change at some point in their lives and this needs to be factored into longterm retention strategies .”
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