IT teams not up to scratch, say tech leaders

The pace of change within IT has accelerated rapidly in recent years and, according to new research from IT resourcing firm Experis, many organisations now believe they have fallen behind the competition.

The report found that tech leaders believe their departments are a whole four years behind their most innovative competitors, whilst also believing that 29 per cent of their teams need to be changed in order to drive digital transformation.

IT leaders identify a lack of skills as being a primary factor. Organisations want their teams to deliver more cloud services (61 per cent), more mobile apps (53 per cent) and turn data into actionable insight (51 per cent), but 67 per cent of IT leaders say they currently lack the expertise required.

However, 71 per cent of IT workers responded by saying that their skills and knowledge are not being fully utilised due to a lack of investment (46 per cent) and outdated training (34 per cent). 34 per cent of IT workers also believe that day-to-day problem solving is prioritised over long-term innovation, showing a disconnect between IT leaders and workers.

Geoff Smith, Managing Director of Experis Europe, commented: “Traditionally, the IT department was the practical powerhouse tasked with maintaining infrastructure, but now it is evolving to become more strategic. IT teams are starting to redefine business practices and put digital services at the heart of their organisation. Yet, this research suggests they aren’t in a fit state to facilitate this change. IT leaders think they lack the relevant team skills, but workers believe they aren’t given the opportunity to demonstrate their talent.

“Organisations must review and restructure their IT teams to enable innovation. This starts with greater investment in the right training that is tailored to employees and business requirements, while creating a culture that supports personal development. It’s also important to realise the potential of existing IT teams and encourage individuals to think creatively about projects that will impact the bottom line – whether it’s designing and implementing the latest mobile app or delivering cloud services.

"Hiring additional professionals who can either immediately fill the skills gap or are capable of acquiring new skills should also be considered. All this will enable tech teams to become more productive, strategic and results driven in order to drive IT transformation. Failure to do so could result in project failure."

Image source: Shutterstock/Sergey Nivens