A recent survey by John J. Davis & Associates, a New York executive search firm, shows that accommodating personal/lifestyle issues is now ranked as "very important" by one-third of the 288 responding CIOs.

Just three years ago, only 10% of the respondents considered personal/lifestyle issues to be very important in attracting IT professionals.

John Davis, president of the executive recruiting firm, says, "Accommodating lifestyles was a minor issue three years ago, cited by just 10% of the CIOs surveyed. This time, however, 33% of the CIOs said personal and lifestyle issues were ? very important,? " a three-fold increase.

New generation

Like their colleagues in other fields, the new generation of IT professionals wants to be sure there? s time for family or outside pursuits. Or it may be a health issue or some personal inclination. Whatever it may be, candidates are more likely today to bring up such concerns, and companies are more likely to meet them at least half way."

In answer to the question about how recruitment/retention of top IT talent has grown more difficult, other considerations appear to have changed less dramatically.

Smaller talent pool

Some 88% of the CIOS in the latest survey said "There is greater competition for top talent" compared to 82% three years ago. Concerns about a smaller "pool" of talent were considered very important by 48% of the CIOs in the 2000 poll compared to 41% in 1997. And the issues of technological obsolescence and unique skills also were rated similarly in both surveys.

The study also suggests that employers have developed new programs for attracting and keeping their IT professionals.

Compelling incentive

"Even three years ago, over two-thirds of organizations recognized that opportunities to learn new skills would be a compelling incentive for IT professionals. But today it seems providing such training is the most effective IT recruitment and retention tool, surpassing even expanded responsibilities and competitive compensation," Davis says.

Recruiting Trends. Copyright © 2001 Kennedy Information, 800-531-0007. All rights reserved. Reproduction prohibited by law.