2014

Workforce 101: More Than One-Third of CIOs Plan to Hire New IT Graduates; Lack of Interpersonal Skills Greatest Obstacle to Success

MENLO PARK, Calif., July 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- School may be out, but IT hiring is in session for more than one in three firms. Thirty-five percent of chief information officers (CIOs) interviewed said they plan to hire new IT graduates in 2013, according to a recent poll by Robert Half Technology.  

But not all CIOs polled give new graduates high marks when it comes to being ready for their first job. More than one in four respondents (26 percent) said entry-level professionals aren't prepared to contribute right away. Among these executives, more than half (55 percent) said the reason is a lack of skills in areas such as communication and leadership.     

The national survey was developed by Robert Half Technology, a leading provider of information technology professionals on a project and full-time basis, and conducted by an independent research firm. The survey is based on more than 2,300 telephone interviews with CIOs from a random sample of U.S. companies in 23 major metro areas with 100 or more employees.

CIOs were asked, "Does your organization plan to hire any new IT graduates this year?" Their responses:

Yes.....................................................................

35%

No.......................................................................

63%

Don't know..........................................................

2%


100%

CIOs also were asked, "In general, how prepared do you think new IT graduates are to start contributing as soon as they start a new job?" Their responses:

Prepared.........................................................

69%

Unprepared..................................................

26%

Don't know.....................................................

5%


100%

CIOs who didn't think IT graduates were prepared to contribute right away were asked, "Which single skill or attribute do you feel new graduates most lack?" Their responses:

Personal skills (i.e., communication, leadership skills).....

55%

Technical skills................................................................................

29%

Business skills (i.e., job-related experience, teamwork skills).......

17%

Other.............................................................................................. 

1%


102%*

*Numbers do not total 100 percent due to rounding.

"IT hiring managers are seeking candidates who not only possess technical abilities, but can also meet deadlines and work well with customers and colleagues," said Robert Half Technology's senior executive director, John Reed. "New IT graduates can distinguish themselves in the job market by demonstrating business acumen and solid interpersonal skills."

Reed added that students and recent graduates can hone some of those sought-after soft skills by finding an internship or volunteering at nonprofit organizations, where they can interact with colleagues in a professional environment on a regular basis.

Robert Half Technology offers four focus areas for recent IT grads looking to build their nontechnical skills:

  1. Communication. It may seem a given that you need to speak and write clearly, but some IT pros fail in this area. Avoid using jargon or technical concepts that are obvious to you but might be unclear or unfamiliar to others.
  2. Conflict resolution. Disagreements occur in every office. Learning how to calmly sort out issues and find acceptable compromises will aid you throughout your career.
  3. Teamwork. Is a coworker working on a major initiative and everything must be completed by next week? Offer to help out if you're not overloaded yourself. The way to win support is by giving support when it's needed.
  4. Diplomacy. Always maintain a professional tone when communicating with others.  This means never corresponding when you're angry or frustrated -- you could regret it later.

About Robert Half Technology

With more than 100 locations worldwide, Robert Half Technology is a leading provider of technology professionals for initiatives ranging from web development and multiplatform systems integration to network security and technical support. Robert Half Technology offers online job search services at www.rht.com.

SOURCE Robert Half Technology



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