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6 Signs to Rethink Your IT Staffing Approach

Managed IT Services

Are you about to bite the bullet about changing your IT department but aren’t sure you really need it?   

Then you’re in the right place.  

This article draws on Intelligent Technical Solutions’ (ITS) over twenty years of extensive IT management experience to examine the signs that your IT staffing approach needs to change.    

Including insights from an interview with Todd Whitley, Senior VP of ITS Olympia, here are the six critical signs that it’s time to update your IT staffing strategy for better performance and satisfaction: 

1. You’re having staff hiring and retention problems.  

a hand picking out an employee from the listIf your organization experiences frequent turnover among IT staff, it’s a sign that you need to improve your hiring or retention strategies.

People also leave, regardless of how well you treat them or how long they’ve been in the company.

“One day, we got a call from a law firm, and they had an in-house IT person who was their finance director, who got stuck with the IT role as well,” Whitley shared. “After working for the company for ten years, he gave his two-week notice.”

The company quickly pivoted in a new direction, hiring ITS and plugging the gap in their staff.

Aside from staff retention, you might also have increasing recruitment costs, such as advertising, agency fees, and candidate onboarding, which may indicate that your current staffing approach could be more cost-effective.

Plus, high turnover can lead to increased costs and disruptions to project timelines, making finding a better solution a top priority.

RELATED: How Much Does It Cost to Outsource IT?  

2. Your staff’s skills don’t meet your needs.   

people with puzzle pieces that dont fitYou hire someone and realize – oops, they don’t have all the skills you need. Or, oops, you still need more staff. Or, oops – they oversold themselves in the interview.

When you experience these cases, you need to fix your IT staffing approach ASAP.

For example, there was a mismatch of skills in the previous case of the 10-year employee who resigned.

“We found out they [the law firm] were stalled on a bunch of projects that needed to be done,” Whitley said. “It was one of those things where you think you have an IT person, but this person didn’t exactly know what they were doing.”

The law firm in question had to catch up on its tech debt.

Another law firm had trouble with their staff’s skillset.

“We were called into a law firm a few years ago, & they had an IT consultant. They were outsourcing, but it was a one-person operation, and suddenly they lost confidence in this person’s ability,” Whitley explained.  

“So, we sat down with the law firm partner, who hired us to manage their IT.” 

3. There’s a mismatched communication and cultural fit.  

two people trying to communicate but cant understand each otherIf your IT team struggles to collaborate or communicate effectively, it may be a sign that you need to change your IT strategy. You can do this by reevaluating team structure, roles, or interpersonal dynamics.

A misalignment between the company culture and the values of IT staff also leads to a lack of engagement and productivity. Make sure you communicate to your HR that cultural fit is a high priority during the hiring process.

IT Needs Analyzer

4. There are increased or consistent project delays.   

a clock with words pertaining to delay sticked to itConsistent delays in IT projects or a slow response to day-to-day issues are signs of an insufficient or mismatched IT staff. Maybe they don’t have the required skills or a need to explore different talent pools.

Shift your hiring strategies and IT structure so that your team has the right mix of skills and expertise to meet project requirements and timelines.

5. Your employees aren’t satisfied.   

two employees who are not satisfiedPoor morale and job satisfaction among IT staff often indicate issues with management, work environments, or staffing strategies. It’s a red flag calling your attention—you need to change something ASAP.

Check if your employees are still satisfied by using employee surveys and exit interviews.

You’ll discover employees' challenges and empower yourself to create a better environment. Promptly addressing these issues can prevent further dissatisfaction and turnover, securing a more engaged and productive IT team.   

6. The market is making your IT setup obsolete.   

a computer setup that is already obsoleteExternal factors, such as shifts in the job market, emerging technologies, or changes in industry demands, may push you to reevaluate your IT staffing approach to stay competitive.   

“You should be – somewhat – in front of technology,” Whitley said. “You don’t have to be bleeding edge, but you certainly need to be in front of cybersecurity and make sure you know your server operating system is going to eventually fall out of support, and then you don’t have security patches; there’s just a lot of moving parts that have to be managed.” 

And if you can’t see yourself juggling everything while tech marches forward, you need to reevaluate your IT staffing strategies.    

Ready to overcome your IT staffing challenges?  

Since you already know the signs something has to change, you need to ask yourself: what now?

At ITS, we believe businesses can permanently solve issues hindering progress and jeopardizing security. Whether mitigating high turnover rates, bridging skill gaps, or preventing project delays, the key is to be proactive rather than reactive.

So, if you’re ready to overcome IT staffing challenges, check out the following resources:

But if you want to know where to start for a fully proactive IT department, use our IT Needs Analyzer to determine what your business needs—beyond a staffing revamp.

IT Needs Analyzer