KNOWLEDGE GAP

Survey Finds Only Half of Companies Provide Non-Technical Training to IT Staff

Nov 17, 2004
3:18pm

MENLO PARK, CA -- Skills such as project management, leadership and communication may be critical for the next generation of information technology (IT) managers, but many employees are not receiving formal education in these areas, a new survey finds.  Nearly half (47 percent) of chief information officers (CIOs) polled said their companies do not provide IT professionals with instruction in business and communication fundamentals.

The national poll includes responses from more than 1,400 CIOs from a stratified random sample of U.S. companies with 100 or more employees.  It was conducted by an independent research firm and developed by Robert Half Technology, a leading provider of information technology professionals on a project and full-time basis.

CIOs were asked, “Do you offer your IT staff training in non-technical areas such as leadership, communication, project management and business fundamentals?”  Their responses:

Yes   53%
No     47%
    100%

“Managers faced with an immediate need for technology expertise and limited budgets for professional development often opt to support technical training rather than invest in building soft skills, which they may perceive as less critical,” said Katherine Spencer Lee, executive director of Robert Half Technology.  “However, instruction in business, management and communication can greatly enhance the team’s productivity as well as their ability to collaborate on solving everyday challenges such as improving efficiency and competitiveness.”

Lee added, “Employers should not only support non-technical training through internal programs or tuition reimbursement for external courses, but also provide staff with the time and resources to take advantage of education opportunities.  For instance, projects might be reassigned to allow an employee to attend a business-writing seminar.”

With more than 100 locations in North America and Europe, Robert Half Technology is a leading provider of technology professionals for initiatives ranging from web development and multiplatform systems integration to network engineering and technical support.  Robert Half Technology offers online job search services at www.rht.com.  


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