why good it people are so hard find

12 Jun

I was recently reading an interview of the CIO of GM, Terry Kline, on why it is so hard to find those special few individuals with both broad and deep skills across the different realms of IT, and why they are so valuable…

He thinks that “deep tech chops still are highly valued. Yet the road looks tougher than ever to become this particular kind of IT superstar… I’ve always broke IT into four areas, explains Kline. Those areas are:

1.Software development: You’ve written code.
2.Operations: You’ve backed up servers, installed operating systems, reloaded a router. Bottom line: “You know
how to keep the lights on,” Kline says.
3.Architect: You know how to do jobs such as put in multiple servers with high availability and failover, you know
how to deal with volume shadowing, you understand when it’s best to stripe and disc and not. Etc.
4.Databases: This factors into all the others, but Kline makes it its own category to settle the argument over which one it goes in.

…Kline figures it takes about 15 years to gain sufficient experience in all four disciplines. He’d like to bring more of those people into the new GM…Individuals that have spent time in all four areas are highly valuable. They work really well in our outsourced model…”

I read this an instantly thought that now, more than ever, the value of the individual [the right individual] borders on intangible. We’ve alway focused on hiring the best and brightest at Extropy. We’re often met with resistance in a market where staffing has commoditized lower level resources and many finance and HR executives would have you believe that VMS (Vendor Management Systems) help drive prices down. The truth is that these systems do initially drive prices down, but also drive quality out of the equation. If you go with the lowest bidder, you get what you pay for. Time and time again I’ve seen less than stellar performances by people put into positions they weren’t qualifies for. This is, in part, why our model of over-allocating our human resources to clients ensures that they get what they pay for and then some. Those who have witnessed first hand the difference, are believers, and it’s great to see that some executives still acknowledge the value of expertise and experience in IT. So I can say with confidence to those believers, we’re here, and we’re keeping the bar high.


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Posted by on June 12, 2010 in Books


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