There’s no rest for the weary IT manager. To meet today’s changing requirements for cloud, big data, and consumerization, IT managers already have a pressing need to reskill their workforce. Yet there’s another issue at hand: An aging workforce is transitioning rapidly into retirement and IT managers will need to manage the remaining skills gap.
InfoWorld* recently published an interesting article on the upcoming workforce exodus and what it means for IT. According to Pew Research, 10,000 U.S. baby boomers will turn 65 every day until we reach the year 2030. This means there will be a lot of talented, experienced IT knowledge leaving your organization.
Legacy systems require legacy skills
While newer, advanced technologies are making their way into the enterprise, there are still many companies running critical business applications on older systems. Legacy skills can also be integral to the success of transitioning from older to newer technologies as companies phase out legacy systems.
However, many veteran workers may be open to staying on in a consulting capacity, even part-time, if they can work flexibly.
According to the InfoWorld article, “Companies keen on retaining veteran workers, and their knowledge, are initiating retirement conversations early to increase the likelihood that these employees will stay on in some capacity after they stop working full time, said Matthew Ripaldi, senior vice president at IT staffing firm Modis.”
Filling the gap with scalable solutions
Another approach to solve the legacy skills gap can be found in “self-service” IT staffing. A recent CIO.com article featured OnForce, a company that provides skilled IT professionals on demand—a workforce as a service (WaaS) business model. Similar to on-demand cloud services, you can hire a skilled and vetted IT worker with the precise skills you need, and do so on an as-needed basis.
Moreover, Peter Cannone, CEO of OnForce, explains that his company also provides “workforce optimization.” “For those folks who have a maturing or declining tech deployment like an aging network infrastructure, or server or network hardware that's reaching the end of its life we can provide teams that are skilled in helping businesses get every last drop of productivity and usefulness out of older technology,” Cannone says.
What are some of your organization’s strategies for managing the departure of older IT workers or addressing other skills gaps in this time of workforce transition?