Stress driving 67% of IT pros to consider career change

There’s one thing most IT employees want, and offering it could help companies retain their best tech employees, even as the IT job market heats up

Help dealing with stress.

IT employees are stressed out. So much so that two-thirds have considered changing careers, according to a recent survey conducted by Opinion Matters on behalf of GFI Software. That includes 25% who say stress causes them to consider a career change on a regular basis.

Among the 400 IT administrators in the U.S. and the U.K. surveyed, 70% said their jobs are stressful, and 72% believed they are as or more stressed out in their jobs as other people in their social circle.

What’s stressing out IT staffers? The top contributing factors cited by survey respondents were:

  1. Management
  2. Tight deadlines, and
  3. The users they support.

IT managers can help boost job satisfaction, productivity and retention by helping staffers deal with those issues. It can help to ask employees what they do and don’t like about how they’re managed, and what they’d like to see changed — for example, they may have issues with how assignments are given, or they may want more flexibility in their scheduling.

Also, while deadlines may not be able to change, it’s a smart idea to periodically review how IT’s workload is distributed to make sure no one is being burdened too heavily.

And as far as users go, most of the stress reported by IT employees is the result of dealing with calls from people with problems that should be simple to solve. You can help reduce the amount of calls like that by offering IT training to users that need the most help with basic computer skills. Also, it may help to provide self-help tools for users, such as troubleshooting guides posted to the company’s intranet.

Read our earlier post for more tips on how to lower the stress of working the help desk.

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  • I worked at a company that promoted work-life integration, versus work – life balance. Unfortunately, that is today’s reality, especially with sysadmins who are on-call 24/7 to ensure IT services have minimal down time. Fortunately, modern technology is helping to ease that pain with IT applications becoming accessible via mobile devices. One of the key benefits we have found with SolarWinds Mobile Admin, is that it improves work-life balance because IT pros are not forced to rush home to their computer to solve a problem. They can do it from the check out line, or at dinner or one the train, traveling home from work.