The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that, while we continue to hear stories of layoffs, "consolidation", and dire financial straits IT pros are faring quite well. According to a study conducted by employment site Dice.com, IT pros saw an average salary increase of 4.6% last year over 2007. Whether that type of jump will occur throughout 2009 is up for debate and doubtful, it does seem that businesses are recognizing IT professionals for the work that they’re doing to help bring efficiency and savings to the business. Good news for IT pros casting a wary eye on the road ahead in 2009.
I reported recently on the fact that spending in IT seems alive and well, based on research I conducted using data from our IT readership panel. Areas such as networking, virtualization, and consolidation are seeing budgets increase in 2009, all in an effort to continue the momentum of IT-drive bottom-line improvements.
So, the takeaway, IT is clearly one of the best places to weather this recession, as it’s clear that business "gets" and is rewarding IT pros that can help save their businesses some cash, if not save them in full. So what should IT shops do that are concerned about staying on track?
- Don’t shift investment focus. Key investment priorities cannot shift for I&O as a knee-jerk response to an economic downturn. Budgets and investment priorities should not shift in light of changing economic climates, in fact, doing so is likely to have negative effects.
- Look to efficiency technologies to extend gains. Your focus should be on technologies that bring efficiency to the business such as virtualization, consolidation of core networking, and creative solutions to extend the life of client-side assets.
- Communicate internal improvements that contribute to business efficiencies. As an IT leader, keeping front of mind the direct impact IT infrastructure and operations can have in helping to save the business and communicating this to members of the IT organization is a good way to allay fears of departmental staff reductions.
Keep and eye out for more detail on this theme in my upcoming research piece, "Making I&O Investments To Save The Business" publishing later this month. You can set up a research alert to be notified when it publishes.
[Ed. note] This post originally noted the Dice survey was conducted in partnership with the Wall Street Journal, which was incorrect. More information on the Dice Salary Survey can be found on the Dice site, here.
By Chris Silva
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