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Sat 22 Mar 2003 04:00 AM

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Employee burnout reaches epidemic proportions

According Meta Group, 71% of IT managers surveyed indicate IT employee burnout is currently a serious issue.

Employee burnout in the information technology industry is reaching epidemic proportions. According to a study from Meta Group, 71% of IT managers surveyed indicate IT employee burnout is currently a serious issue.If not addressed, employee fatigue could lead to longer range staff turnover, lower productivity and less overall shareholder value.“Working through this prolonged recession, which has seen budget cuts across the enterprise, numerous staff cutbacks, and general sector uncertainty, has definitely taken its toll on IT employee morale. Unfortunately, it is those same budget cuts that are impeding managers from combating the problem by way of making concrete improvements,” says Maria Schafer, program director of Meta Group's IT Human Capital Management Strategies. “Until budgets loosen, managers will be implementing internal career advancement incentives in the form of skill development and retention programs. Proactively addressing these issues is essential to avoid a loss of productivity over the longer term,” he adds.According to Meta Group, 55% of companies surveyed have begun implementing skill development programs as a means to boost employee morale. A further 24% have created better overall retention programs.Monetary rewards registered as a viable ‘plan B,’ with 11% of surveyed companies raising salaries, 11% hiring more staff, and 8% offering cash incentives to prevent employee burnout. Few IT organisations with remote locations relied on a ‘change of scenery’ to attract more talent and retain good people 5% moved the company to a new location altogether in an effort to lure skilled workers and reduce employee malaise.

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