EPAM Continuum Study Reveals Key Insights for Combatting the Tech Talent Shortage

Among more than 900 senior technology and people leaders surveyed, only 13% are satisfied with their current talent development and retention strategies

The tech industry is highly competitive, and organizations that struggle to attract and retain skilled technologists may find it challenging to fill critical positions with qualified candidates. This can lead to project delivery delays and reduced productivity—interfering with an organization’s ability to innovate and stay competitive.

EPAM Continuum, the integrated strategy, technology and experience consulting practice of EPAM Systems, Inc., released part two of its Tech Talent report titled “How IT & People Teams Can Align for Better Talent Management’ which addresses the challenges of hiring, developing and retaining technology talent and what companies can do about it. Part one of the report discussed leadership roles in driving digital transformation and how leaders inadvertently hinder their company’s digital transformation efforts.

“For companies to stay competitive, it’s imperative to hire, develop and retain great tech talent; however, our research indicates the current approach isn’t working,” said Sandra Loughlin, Ph.D., Chief Learning Scientist and Head of Client Learning and Talent Enablement at EPAM. “The People and Technology functions need to forge stronger partnerships to support technologists across the entire talent lifecycle. Only then will organizations fully unlock the potential of the technology workforce and enhance business performance.”

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To understand where business leaders stand with hiring, developing and retaining technology talent, the study surveyed 900 senior leaders from technology, digital, data, product and people (learning, HR and talent acquisition) departments— a group that spans 20 industries and nine countries across North America, Europe and Asia.

Key findings include:

  • The current approach to tech talent isn’t working.Only 13% of leaders are satisfied with their current talent development and retention strategies. When it comes to hiring, that number drops to 11%.
  • Technologists are frustrated with tooling, micromanagement and processes. The top three most cited reasons for technologists leaving organizations were frustrations with tooling (59%), micromanagement and bureaucracy (58%) and dissatisfaction with the process of delivering technology (58%).
  • People and IT organizations are out of sync on tech talent lifecycle management. With 54-59% of people leaders indicating skepticism about the tech organization’s people skills for hiring, developing and retaining technologists, and 63-64% of tech leaders expressing doubt regarding the technical skills of the people organization for the same tasks, a distinct lack of confidence in each other’s strengths becomes evident.

“The rapid pace of change in technology and data, especially considering disruption wrought by AI, requires businesses to have strong in-house capabilities,” Loughlin said. “Our research reveals the depth and sources of challenge organizations have around tech talent and offers proven approaches to address them. By fostering a true partnership between the People and Technology functions, companies can better align technology talent to business objectives, supercharging sustained growth, innovation and leadership in the digital age.”

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