Radical shift to retain skilled staff

Organisations in the 21st century face a momentous lack of skilled IT workers and will need to undertake a radical human resources shift to secure staff in a significantly changing workforce, according to IDC.

Individual interests have replaced trust and loyalty as the primary reasons for employees' association with companies.

According to IDC's research program manager for human resources strategies, Michael Boyd, the way work will be accomplished this millennium will be very different to the past and a radical HR rethink will be necessary.

He said downsizing, resizing, and re-engineering employee jobs for the sake of improving the bottom line contributed to eroding employee trust and loyalty.

"The available workers in the 21st century will expect and demand individual accommodation with regard to their needs for security, predictability, and dignity," Boyd said.

"The balance will shift entirely from the employer to the employee."

Boyd said this shift in power will intensify the already-fierce competition for skilled IT workers, and companies will have to work even harder to attract and retain IT professionals.

"The shortage of sufficient IT workers to meet the continuing increase in the number of openings shows no signs of lessening," he said.

"Companies will have to go the extra mile to be considered employers of choice."

IDC's recommendations for attracting and retaining IT talent include transferring organisational power to the employees and sharing profits.

"Generation Xers don't seem willing to make the traditional commitment to a business enterprise and to place work as the highest priority in life; baby boomers are leaving corporate life at an increasing rate," Boyd explained.

"Their relationship with a company is based more on an individual than a group agreement.

"As the century progresses, only those businesses that understand and meet the expectations and needs of workers at the individual level will continue as long-term business entities."

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