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IT Professionals Perceive their Roles as Critical to Business Success; Don’t Believe Organizations Share their View, Finds TEKsystems

Nov 15, 2011 | HANOVER, MD | For media inquiries, please contact us at

HANOVER, MD – November 15, 2011 – TEKsystems®, a leading provider of IT staffing solutions, IT talent management expertise and IT services, today announced findings from its quarterly IT Professional Perspectives Survey (ITPPS). This quarter’s ITPPS surveyed 2,379 IT professionals from mid-August to early-September 2011. TEKsystems uses insights discovered through this survey to help clients improve how they attract, develop and retain their IT workforce. 

IT Professionals Rate Their Function First 

When asked which organizational functions have the highest perceived value, IT professionals rate their own function first. The highest percent (29%) rate IT the most valued function, followed by sales (25%), finance (15%), operations (13%) and marketing (6%). 

“Great IT departments enable great business. They empower internal customers like sales, finance, operations and marketing to perform more effectively and efficiently,” says TEKsystems Director Rachel Russell. “IT professionals often feel their function adds significant value thanks to the robust research, vetting and validation process most IT initiatives undergo before projects are green-lighted. IT regularly justifies its investments in terms of how much and how fast it can provide business lift.”

IT professionals’ assessment of their value to an organization goes deeper than the function they fulfill. The majority of respondents (61%) report that their companies would experience a significant void if they left the organization. 

“Most IT departments are resource starved, forced to do more with less. Therefore, replacing key IT resources with the right technical skills, industry knowledge and business acumen can be a really tough job. We advise our clients on how to retain their high performers. It’s critical that IT employees feel a sense of organizational purpose and that their organization really values and respects what they do,” states Russell. 

The Feeling Is NOT Mutual

Nearly 80% of respondents believe their role is critical to their firms’ strategy. However, only 55% of respondents believe the organization thinks their role is critical to the strategy.

“This is an unfortunate imbalance,” says Russell. “The more IT employees feel the organization is invested in them, the more invested they become in return. When employees feel appreciated and listened to, productivity and creativity on the job rises to the benefit of the business.”

 Addressing the Disconnect

The survey reveals the following opportunities for organizations to improve their IT professionals’ sense of being valued:

Engage in Quality Communication. Respondents feel leadership connects frequently enough with 69% saying leadership connects either daily or weekly. However, only 52% rate leadership’s ability to keep employees informed and plugged into the strategy as excellent or very good.

Solicit More Feedback. Only 25% feel leadership completely understands what goes on at the line level. Moreover, 86% of IT professionals believe their leadership could benefit from having a better understanding of line-level employees.

Listen. Seventy-seven percent of IT professionals believe their insights can help the organization. Seventy-one percent believe that compared to leadership, line-level employees come up with ideas that are more likely to work in practice.

Select Managers with Care. Seventy-two percent of IT professionals rate the majority of managers they’ve had in their careers as “poor.” Additionally, fifty-five percent do not believe their managers help them achieve their professional goals.

Ensure Managers Serve Down, Not Just Up. Only 56% indicate their leader seeks out and/or listens to the team’s ideas. Sixty-four percent also say their leader would benefit from more direct feedback from his/her team.

“We help our clients pay close attention to what’s going on where the rubber meets the road. When organizations understand the perspective of their line-level IT employees, they are able to understand their core problems better, develop more realistic change strategies and formulate superior approaches to IT initiative execution. They’re also able to improve attraction and retention of high-performance IT professionals who enjoy working for an organization that seeks their opinions.” concludes Russell.

About TEKsystems

People are at the heart of every successful business initiative. At TEKsystems, an Allegis Group company, we understand people. Every year we deploy more than 80,000 IT professionals at 6,000 client sites across North America, Europe and Asia. Our deep insights into IT human capital management enable us to help our clients achieve their business goals–while optimizing their IT workforce strategies. We provide IT staffing solutions and IT services to help our clients plan, build and run their critical business initiatives. Through our range of quality-focused delivery models, we meet our clients where they are, and take them where they want to go, the way they want to get there.