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IT Leaders Report Major Concerns about Securing IT Talent for Large IT Infrastructure Projects, Finds TEKsystems

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About TEKsystems

People are at the heart of every successful business initiative. At TEKsystems, 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, IT talent management expertise 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.

HANOVER, MD – October 12, 2011 – Only 32% of IT leaders report being effective at workforce planning for large IT infrastructure projects, according to a recent survey performed by TEKsystems and CIO magazine.  Although most IT leaders believe the success of any IT initiative depends on the people driving it, they often prioritize many other considerations ahead of workforce planning.

TEKsystems®, a leading provider of IT staffing solutions, IT talent management expertise and IT services, partnered with CIO magazine to evaluate the quality of workforce planning for large IT infrastructure projects.  The survey was performed in May 2011 by IDG Research and reflects the perspectives of 231 technology executives nationwide.

Risks of Poor Workforce Planning
Respondents admit that they’ve suffered multiple consequences of poor workforce planning.  Sixty-nine percent indicate missed or delayed project deadlines, 62% report technical complications or rework and 58% say they’ve experienced lower levels of productivity as a result of ineffective workforce planning processes. The associated financial impact of these events amounted to an increase of more than 10 percent in total project costs.

“IT leaders know the importance of human capital, but workforce planning tends to be an unfortunate afterthought compared to other competing priorities,” says Garrett Haycock, TEKsystems VP of Network Services. “That said, workforce planning doesn’t happen on its own. We advice our clients to proactively engage partners like TEKsystems in the planning process for large IT undertakings to ensure they have the right people when and where they need them.”

Easier Said than Done?
Ninety-two percent of respondents indicate it is challenging for IT organizations to secure the necessary skills for large infrastructure. Additionally, 60% say one of the biggest challenges is the professionals with the necessary competencies are not available when needed.

“It’s not uncommon for organizations to find themselves in a hiring fire drill, attempting to find, recruit and onboard key roles for a critical project and wishing they had them yesterday,” states Haycock. “It’s a competitive market, and especially in the Network Services space, many organizations must compete for the skilled IT talent they need. Organizations with a more strategic, proactive approach can get the best people while those who are reactive are often forced to accept what’s available.”

Finding the Right Partner
Eighty-one percent of IT leaders report that the necessary skills change throughout the Plan, Build and Run phases of IT infrastructure projects. Respondents indicate they rely on different types of companies for each phase. Sixty-five percent chose consulting firms for the Plan stage, 57% indicate Systems Integrators are the top choice for the Build stage and 62% rely on IT staffing firms for the Run phase.

“Consulting firms and Systems Integrators tend to be sought for the Plan and Build stages because of their strategic capabilities. However, without a core competency in talent sourcing and recruiting, it is difficult for them to adjust on the fly and ramp up or down as the skill set composition of the project teams change through the Plan, Build and Run phases,” comments Haycock. “Our most effective clients work with us in tandem with their consulting and Systems Integrator partners. This relationship allows us to build the appropriate talent pipelines and even support the partners’ talent needs throughout a program plan. Our end goal is to ensure the client has the right people in place to execute critical initiatives, and maintain new technologies or processes post go-live.”