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HANOVER, MD – September 16, 2011 – TEKsystems, the nation’s leading services, today announced findings from its quarterly IT Executive Outlook survey, conducted in partnership with the Inavero Institute. Over 35% of IT leaders rate their IT organization’s training program’s effectiveness as fair or poor, and nearly half rate their reinforcement plans (46%) and accountability mechanisms (42%) as fair or poor.
“For training to be considered effective, reinforcement plans and accountability to using newly acquired skills are essential,” says TEKsystems Director, Rachel Russell. “These structures not only enable IT professionals to master what they learned, but also, they show the workforce that an organization is serious about applying new IT skills to advance the business.”
IT leaders say formal training is the best choice for hard skills like IT certifications (89%), project management (74%), technology skills (74%), and emerging technologies (69%). Additionally, respondents say soft skills like leadership (50%), industry knowledge (55%) and business acumen (71%) are better learned organically through experience and not training.
“While soft skills like leadership and business acumen can be learned on the job, we believe that formal training programs that address the characteristics associated with successful leaders can greatly benefit high potential employees,” comments Russell. “The learning curve is steep for really understanding a corporate culture, the business operations and a company’s strategy. Companies that invest in formal programs to help IT professionals hone these skills can improve how IT is viewed by the business and the impact IT is able to make on the business.”
IT managers (60%) or IT directors (51%) are most often responsible for developing training programs, according to the survey. However, 28% of IT leaders say that IT employees should be responsible and share ownership for prioritizing which training programs are most relevant for them.
“It is important for IT workers to be proactive when it comes to their training and development,” states Russell. “As new technologies emerge and the pace of change continues to increase, IT professionals with leading edge skills will continue to be in high demand. Further, training should not be limited to technical skills alone. Organizations value IT professionals who have industry knowledge and are able to speak the language of the business.”
About the IT Executive Outlook survey:
TEKsystems, a leading technology staffing and services company, partners with the Inavero Institute to conduct a quarterly survey of nearly 3,000 IT leaders. The third quarter 2011 online survey was completed by IT decision makers during June 2011. IT managers and directors represented the majority of survey respondents at 86%, and IT executives made up 14% of responses. IT leaders represented all industries, regions and company sizes.