IT is a department that is often much maligned. The IT team are held responsible for everything that goes wrong and when things are running smoothly, few people think to thank IT for all their hard work.
With skills shortages in this sector, low morale is something you can’t afford to allow to go unresolved. If your IT department feels ignored, put upon or unloved, you risk high employee churn and difficulties recruiting and engaging staff. A mindset shift if often what’s required to give IT the credit it deserves; that needs to be from the top with senior leaders recognising that IT is not a cost centre but a critical asset to the organisation’s success.
Below are a few ways you can start making that mindset shift and raise morale in your IT department.
The IT department - strategies to boost morale and engagement
#1: Invite IT to get involved at a strategic level
An important way to give IT creditability and the respect the team deserves is to involve the department in strategic planning and decision making. Your IT director should quickly be able to demonstrate the value of this approach. When involved from the start, IT can help the organisation innovate and get to the next level.
#2: Outsource non-core activities
Large amounts of time can be spent by IT departments resolving support tickets that keep business operations running. This work takes skilled IT professionals away from more strategic work and their core competencies, and is often thankless and results in poor morale. Instead, explore outsourcing 1st and 2nd line IT support to free up internal teams so they can focus on more rewarding work – rewarding for them, and for the organisation.
#3: Invest in your IT team
Outsourcing key IT functions can deliver significant cost savings. These can be re-invested in your IT department to increase the performance of the team and help them deliver the value desired. For example, an effective way to address the skills gap in IT is to upskill existing staff and promote from within. This not only ensures the organisation has the skills needed for the businesses’ goals, but it also has a positive impact on staff engagement and retention.
#4: Teach IT the language of business
IT departments can often find themselves side-lined because they don’t speak the same language as business leaders. Whereas other departments like sales and finance are adept at communicating about their activities and performance based on metrics aligned with business objectives, IT tends to be associated with technical jargon and non-business orientated metrics. By helping your IT leaders relate activities and projects to business success, other stakeholders can see the positive impact IT has on achieving objectives - especially bottom line results.
#5: Raise awareness of IT’s successes
Find opportunities to celebrate the IT team’s successes and their positive impact on the business as a whole. Use internal comms and HR channels to educate employees across the organisation about the value IT delivers to the business and individuals. Whether that’s enabling employees to maximise their productively or facilitating innovation, new products or services, give IT the credit it deserves!
You may also be interested in our whitepaper on Outsourcing – Can it build a better business? Download your copy by clicking below