Strategies to Attract and Retain IT Workers.

Position:News & Numbers

For the first time since 2008, cities are increasing the size of their workforce, according to a recent survey by the Center for Digital Government. And while organizations are hiring new talent, they need to think about the best ways to get the best people.

To attract and retain government information technology (IT") workers, the first strategy is to sell the mission, according to "Future of Work: Recruiting and Retaining Employees in the Government IT Workforce," a paper by Digital Communities. Many people (not just Millennials, as so many recent articles indicate) find motivation in doing good works. To attract people who want to make a difference, governments should emphasize the rewards of public service --and this is easier to do now that government technology is no longer "behind the scenes."

"Providing eager, enthusiastic workers with technology tools and allowing them to operate independently and collaboratively in a flexible, project-rich environment that embraces contemporary management models will be compelling draws," the paper explains. Like most employees, IT workers seek flexibility, and "flexibility implies mobility. Rather than tie themselves to a desk, today's employees want to work from wherever they like in whatever space is convenient. Supporting a flexible workforce means providing mobile connectivity while maintaining IT security, but this change in computing infrastructures makes security far more challenging, so jurisdictions must ensure they effectively manage both."

Creative people also need to be able to interact with their fellow employees. The paper suggests determining ways to re-imagine existing spaces or finding new...

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