Managing an IT staff is a challenge for any business leader or executive, and the constantly changing technology and increasing complexity at workplace doesn't do much to alleviate the pressure. Some of the most common IT gaffes include hiring or promoting the wrong people, ignoring problems and avoiding decisions until it's too late and impose business risks.
4 top responsibilities of business leader managing IT staff
Provide Expectations: As a business leader, you need to provide clear expectation to your staff. A study from Gallup discovered that 50% of all IT employees don't know what's expected of them at work. The study's authors believe that when employees do not have a clear understanding of what's required of them, they are less engaged at work. Following 3 items should be part of setting priorities and expectation from IT Staff:
- Align technology deliverables with business objectives
- Provide technology requirements and standards
- Provide IT Process, Policies and documentation
- Provide all the required tools for your staff to deliver their work
Coaching/Mentoring/Training: Ongoing coaching and training for your IT Staff is critical to boost their productivity and your business performance. Most business leaders stay away from this responsibility because of either lack of IT knowledge or not willing to invest time and efforts to understand their complex environment. However, your IT staff required your coaching and training as on-going basis to perform at their role. IT Staff generally have stressful job, they make operating decision that impacts your business performance daily, without proper coaching and mentoring, you will increase turnovers and soft cost.
Checks and Balance: IT governance is about making decisions in a repeatable structured manner to support investment and use of IT to achieve an organization’s goals. The goals of IT governance are to ensure IT investments generate business value and to mitigate business risks, reduce mistakes, balance roles/responsibilities.
However, with limited resources in staff time and their skill sets, most business usually don’t have means of deploying proper checks and balances in IT process which is critical item in order to lower business risks and soft cost.
HR & IT Process – Onboarding & Offboarding: It’s common knowledge that every business required HR onboarding and offboarding for new employees and terminated staff. However, as a business leader your IT Staff also required IT Onboarding/Offboarding process. You need to organize everything involved with an exit and, in many cases, are reversing what happened in the onboarding...read more on user experience
On-boarding: The first impression is often a lasting impression. As new IT staff joins your organizations, how they would gain access to all systems, what documentation will be provided for training, how they would learn your infrastructure, policies, procedures etc. read more on documentation
Off-boarding: Offboarding is designed to ensure a smooth transition and encourage the person who is leaving to share expertise. Also, consider how you would remove access, resources and documentation or technology transfer. Companies must ensure that departing employees leave with a positive mentality and favorable opinion of the company. For departing employees, the difference between having a positive or negative offboarding experience can often be determined by the smallest of details.
Everybody makes mistakes. Most are harmless, some are embarrassing but forgivable, and some can take your business down with them. As a business leader, you must proactively manage your staff to manage your business risk and business performance. Your staff depends on you for personnel and professional developments, let’s get started!
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