5 Ways to Improve Your IT Department

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Setting up an IT department is not enough, but making it function effectively and efficiently is the masterstroke. To achieve this, the following measures can be employed by the Chief Information Officer (CIO) in running an efficient IT department, or you can hire a dedicated software development team.

1. Communicate Goals

Having clear communication channels aid in all areas of life – from professional life to individual life and everything that exists between. By shedding light on every stakeholder in the IT department, the team leader will have solved half of the goal expected to be achieved. As it is commonly said, “a problem half shared is a problem halved soled”. Goal setting encourages the team to work in unison and makes them feel engaged and motivated to achieve them. It also helps every team member to know their respective assignment and responsibility for given aspects of the project.

2. Provide Your Staff with the Necessary Tools They Need to Succeed

The work output of IT staff is only as appealing as the equipment and machinery deployed by the organization. It's incumbent upon the organization to facilitate its staff with the most secure and intuitive resources that bring high turnaround results and helps get rid of monotonous hours as well as promptly establish leakages and network gaps.

Today's IT department requires automation tools that help staff keep off repetitive tasks and also empower them to work remotely by enabling them to safely access and operate the system from anywhere. To realize these possibilities, IT departments should prioritize using tools like Team City, Bamboo, and Jenkins.

3. Staff Members Should Be Provided with Opportunities to Expand and Advance their Knowledge

It's been repeatedly said that knowledge is power. Dependable and trusted IT personnel are fully versed in the current trends in the IT sector. Therefore, IT leaders should offer skill advancement opportunities to the workforce. This can be achieved by allowing team members to attend conferences and register for professional events that are not only geared to expose them to new ideas and technology but also helps them to take a break from their routine tasks hence boosting their morale.

4. Prevent Distraction During Work Time

The workplace is increasingly becoming distracted by things such as emails, push notifications, instant messaging, office affairs, and shrinking office space. According to research from McKinsey, an average employee is interrupted 50 to 60 times per day, and approximately 80% of the distraction are unnecessary. These distractions eat into the productive hours of the members hence slowing down output. To curb this problem, the following measures can be put in place:

Batch Check Everything: Instead of sporadically checking things all day long, staff should be encouraged to batch-check email, instant messages, text messages, and even social media at a specific time of the day. Use of tools such as Gmail's Inbox Pause Plugin which enable staff to pause their inbox once they have seen it and only un-pause when they are ready should be encouraged.

Do Not Disturb: Having this writing placed on the desk during work time will help keep distractors away from you.

Avoid Calendar Appointments: This will help staff to book meeting with people only during scheduled windows.

Have Third Spaces: Staff who struggle to focus in an open office layout should schedule third-space work into their day for critical thinking or creativity. They should find a quiet space in the office or make arrangements for some hours to work from home.

Use Airplane Mode: This tool can be employed to limit phone call interruption and text messages.

5. Solicit Outside Opinion from a Trusted Technology Advisor

A trusted external technology advisor will not only tell you what your ears would love to hear but will be candid relating to every aspect of your department. The benefits of a trusted advisor include:

- Transferring skills and methodologies to the team.

- Giving unbiased viewpoints.

- Bringing new and different perspectives.

- Adding more weight to changes intended by the management.

- Enhance profitability by emphasizing areas with the potential return on investment.

- An extra pair of hands helps to manage a large workload.

For the overall success of the organization, optimum energy should always be channelled to ensure the IT department is consistently improved.

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