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CIOs Hold the Key to Hanging on to Valued Staff

CIOs Hold the Key to Hanging on to Valued Staff

The top challenges for retaining staff are managing a changing demographic and retaining the cream of a dwindling pool of young staff, while holding on to the older baby boomers

Managing expectations

"Work-life balance is key to retaining good talent across the enterprise, particularly those in Generations X and Y. Generation X is under such pressure to allocate time to family as much as work that they will forego some salary for the right work environment," says Walker.

"Generation Y is so used to communicating by IM and social networking using the internet that they will use these means of communication even if they are in the same work environment."

According to Walker, green initiatives are only just taking a priority with many CIOs and it is now a key time for them to get involved. "The opportunity is much more from initiatives across the business than within IT itself," he explains. "The CIO can drive these initiatives by measuring and analyzing where the enterprise shows wasted energy usage and share that information with recommendations for how to reduce the environmental impact.

"By doing so, CIOs will help the enterprise to respond to the current movement, improve the perception of the enterprise in the eyes of customers and also appeal as an employer, especially to Generation Y, the group that is most frustrated with the lack of action.

"A good starting point is to build alliances with other concerned C-level peers and together they should choose one or two priority areas in which success would be most worthwhile for employee retention, public relations and long-term costs."

Green benefits

Insurance company Esure has been building its green program over the past year and IT director Mark Foulsham is at the heart of it. "We have got a company-wide green program and the level of interest in it is very high as people are interested in their contribution towards global warming," he says.

"Individuals, not just in IT but in the rest of the company, do have strong views about what we should be doing in terms of corporate responsibility. IT has a very important contribution to this as a lot of power consumption is down to technology. IT has got to be in the heart of whatever is going on."

Richard Dawson, IT services manager for Bracknell Forest Borough Council, has elbowed his way on to the green agenda at the council and believes there are clear staff benefits. He is responsible for systems used by 1,500 staff.

"In the past three months we have committed to reduce CO2 in the government and everybody is being asked what they're doing. We are publishing what we're doing internally and on the intranet. We took a benchmark before we started and power consumption costing £75,000 (US$151,070) a year now costs less than £50,000.


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