target audience: TECH BUYER  Publication date: Jun 2022 - Document type: IDC Perspective - Doc  Document number: # US49093622

The IT Labor Shortage: Post-Pandemic Issue or Long-Term Problem?

By:  Dr. Ron Babin Loading


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This IDC study provides guidance to CIOs and IT executives on how to manage the IT labor shortage and the associated risks. IT labor has always been in short supply, especially for new and emerging technologies. Now, after weathering a global pandemic with an economic roller-coaster ride, the IT labor shortage is about to get worse. The Great Resignation has affected all employers and will have a bigger impact on the IT workforce. Factors such as lower enrollment in computer and information science college programs concurrent with growing demand for highly skilled IT software developers suggest that the IT labor shortage is about to get worse. At the same time, a riskier global environment has diminished attraction of offshore IT outsourcing. Solutions that have been used to address IT labor shortages in previous years must be rethought as the importance of sufficient numbers of skilled IT employees becomes critical to the success of an organization. Skilled IT employees will help organizations build and deploy necessary digital capabilities in a competitive market. CIOs must plan to address the imminent growing IT labor shortage by adopting flexible work arrangements developed during the pandemic, paying competitive salaries that are not eroded by inflation, investing in the knowledge of employees through formal training and education and by carefully recruiting, hiring, and cross-training employees to build a long-term fit between the individual and the organization.

"The IT labor challenge is likely to last longer and be deeper than many expected, so CIOs should prepare now for an upscaled multiyear effort to recruit and retain skilled IT workers. Competition for high-value IT skills will be strong. Many organizations will depend on the right IT skills to guide modernization of their IT systems that support business transformation in a digital marketplace," says Dr. Ron Babin, adjunct research advisor with IDC's IT Executive Programs (IEP).


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