Boosting IT Worker Productivity

As the Great Recession continues to affect companies around the globe, increased productivity is becoming more coveted than ever. CEOs are trying desperately to get employees to do more with less while increasing revenue in the process. This desire for productivity plus profit is also a strong motivator for the CIO. As a top-level executive, the CIO is expected to use appropriate leadership skills and the right technology solutions to make IT workers perform most efficiently.

“There is a steady drumbeat for lower prices and stable operating margins that [exerts] enormous pressure,” Xerox CIO John McDermott tells CIO Insight. “Our expectations will, at best, stay steady, but they will probably go up, so we need lots of ideas to drive productivity.”

These same difficult economic conditions and increased demands on the workforce are taking their toll on employee morale. A Deloitte “Ethics & Workplace Study” published in summer 2010 finds that 34 percent of the 750 employed Americans surveyed plan to look for a new job when the economy gets better. Among these prospective job-seekers, 46 percent say they are motivated primarily by a lack of transparent communication from their senior management.

As managers, CIOs need to strike a delicate balance: driving workers to reach new heights of productivity, while simultaneously nurturing morale, being clear about goals and rewarding top performers. It all starts with understanding which areas of your organization represent the greatest productivity pitfalls for your IT workers.  Among the top drains on their time are:

  • resolving help desk and service calls
  • deploying new projects, software and architecture
  • maintaining and updating servers, infrastructure and software
  • time binds created by the eight-hour workday.

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