The Tech Talent Shortage Now Threatens Digital Transformation

Posted by Zac Kallas on 11/1/22 9:15 AM
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“The biggest challenge businesses face in their adoption of digital technologies is lack of capable talent…” KPMG Global Tech, September 2022  

Tech Talent

If you're a tech employer – and today, just about every company is a tech employer - you know the drill: you pour countless hours and endless effort into recruiting and onboarding the best and brightest talent, only to watch them exit through a revolving door that seems to be spinning out of control. It's a vicious cycle, one that's becoming difficult to break. Yet, the stakes couldn’t be higher for organizations coming off a two-year big spend on new technology and infrastructure. Intended to improve agility, security, collaboration, and market growth, these investments now sit largely underused, their potential not nearly actualized, simply due to a dearth of skilled talent.

As the clock ticks and the calendar turns, companies face mounting pressure to get fully functional or remain stalled, putting their brands and stakeholders at risk. In fact, 58% of KPMG respondents named the talent shortage as their “#1 biggest challenge complicating the adoption of digital technologies.” Yet, as the study also points out, some employers are consistently winning the battle for talent. It details 7 traits that leading IT employers seem to have in common.

I’ve highlighted three differentiators here.

A culture that attracts talented, curious, innovative people, not just the opportunities and perks of the IT department.

While competitive salary, total compensation, and benefits will always be the primary, mandatory elements of a solid job offer, they’re table stakes. The study suggests that to win talent, employers must have – and actively promote – a culture that fosters and celebrates innovation. Organizations perceived by candidates as overly risk-averse – or resistant to change – are those who seem to struggle most to achieve true digital transformation.

Collaborative processes and the infrastructure to sustain them.

KPMG refers to this critical best practice as a willingness – and ability – to “tear down the silos” between IT departments and other critical stakeholders, including internal teams, customers, and shareholders.  Easier said than done.  While 89% of respondents said they now have enterprise applications intended to make it easier to facilitate enterprise-wide collaboration, 62% say they have not yet successfully removed the silos that separate the functions. As organizations tackle the imperatives of improved security, efficiency, and customer experience, this breakdown of silos must occur.

Willingness to broaden and “restock” the talent pools.

The IT talent crisis has dragged on for a long time and shows few signs of loosening, even as the economy cools. To prevent a longer-term shortage, more employers have recognized the urgency of expanding their definitions of viable candidates. This might mean seeking greater business acumen and rigorously investing in training and developing their tech abilities. It also means ramping up outreach programs, reaching into more universities and colleges – and reaching deeper to build real connections and foster greater brand awareness.

As employers face greater market, brand, and security risks going into 2023, the pressure to close IT talent gaps is growing. At SkyWater Search Partners, we are in constant communication with deep networks of talented and in-demand candidates. If you would like to know how we can help you find, attract, and retain the right people for your organization, please reach out. We would love to talk!

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Topics: For Employers, Recruitment, Retention, Information Technology