December 2015

Each issue of Canadian CIO will look at the business outcomes driving IT investments in large public and private sector enterprises. It will provide a framework for effectively moving from ideas to action.

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Page 21 of 21

DECEMBER 2015 21 Mazin Abou-Seido is Director of Information Technology at Halogen WHAT IT LEADERS NEED TO DO #Action Item 3 Ways for IT leaders to retain and develop talent Here are three tips for engaging, develop- ing and retaining high performing employees that I've used: Provide meaningful feedback on a regular basis High-performing IT professionals know that their greatest strength is their tal- ent. This is where managers play a vital role in managing this talent. And it isn't about recognizing top IT talent once a while or, worse, once a year during performance review time. The direc- tion that talent man- agement is going is ongoing performance management. When done right, perfor- mance management should never come to an end, and encour- age constant dialogue between managers and employees. To get the most out of top IT talent, organizations should first establish a clear link between personal goals and big picture objec- tives. Then, managers should have conver- sations about perfor- mance daily, or at the very least, weekly, to provide meaning- ful feedback on how they're progressing to- wards achieving their established goals. These conversations can be formal or infor- mal, but the objective is to help employees see how their work contributes to the success of the entire organization. Reward and recognize employees fairly If your organization rewards and recognizes employees the same way across the board, what kind of mes- sage does this send to your high performers? After all, they are often employees who often go above and beyond, even when their ac- tions don't involve a monetary reward or a promotion. The most eff ective way to reward and recognize high per- formance is to estab- lish a clear link between individual results and rewards. Also, it's important to remem- ber that non-fi nancial means of recognition can be very powerful for top performers. Recognition can be in the form of thank you emails, monthly reward programs, and pub- lic recognition during meetings involving departments or the entire organization (e.g. quarterly meetings or annual employee Mazin Abou-Seido is Director of Information Technology at Halogen appreciation events). This type of recognition can be just as powerful as monetary rewards because it provides top performers with con- text showing why they are being recognized and provides them with a mechanism to contin- ue to be recognized for their high performance. Focus on learning and development We know the best employees embrace change and are con- stantly looking for ways to expand their skill set and knowledge so that they can con- tinue being a valuable contributor to organi- zational success. To meet this drive, man- agers should work with employees to establish a clear career path and provide various devel- opment opportunities to support the plan. For example, include top performers in stra- tegic planning initia- tives and programs designed to improve organizational com- petitiveness, so that they know their input is valued. Employees who see a clear career path are much more likely to stay and potentially be- come a candidate for succession. I nvesting in employee engagement is one of the primary ways organizations can retain top IT talent. It's something that informs everything we do at Halogen, which off ers a suite of web-based products that automate, simplify and in- tegrate performance appraisals, 360 degree feedback, com- pensation management, succession planning, job descrip- tions and learning management.

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