MIS Quarterly Executive


Since the late 1990s, the retention of IT staff has been a major concern to IT leaders. This article presents five “mindsets” that describe five different profiles of HR retention practices found in IT organizations. Some IT leaders sought to achieve a higher retention rate (that is, lower turnover) for their IT staffs than others. These findings are based on a survey of nearly 100 SIM member organizations, as well as several case studies that focused on the use of different categories of HR practices to retain IT professionals.To craft and maintain an HR portfolio that enables an IT organization to achieve its desired retention rate, the authors recommend: (1) Manage the mindset profile, not single HR practices, (2) Benchmark the profile and monitor for internal and external change, (3) Leverage long-term employment opportunities to retain valued firm-specific skills, and (4) Examine not only your company’s practices, but also those of your outsourcing partners.