IT experts need more business acumen

Aug 04 2006 by Nic Paton Print This Article

For those seeking employment in the technology sector it is no longer enough just to be an expert at the technical stuff, you need to be honing your business skills too.

A Canadian study of chief information officers has suggested that nearly half – 43 per cent – are now placing greater emphasis than five years ago on job candidates' knowledge of business fundamentals when considering them for information technology.

However the poll of more than 270 CIOs and 100 employees found 47 per cent believed the need for business acumen had stayed much the same in that time.

Just 8 per cent felt it had gone down as a requirement and 2 per cent did not know.

"Technology is integrated into all aspects of business, which means technical aptitude alone will not suffice for IT candidates," said Katherine Spencer Lee, executive director of Robert Half Technology, which carried out the study.

"Employers need professionals who can work and communicate effectively with colleagues in all departments," she added.

Lee recommended job seekers at all levels developed business proficiency, including at least a cursory knowledge of finance, marketing and management.

"IT professionals who know the industry and business, and can demonstrate their understanding of the company's core processes, customer base and culture, are in the best position to land – and keep – the best jobs," she concluded.