To gain deeper insight into the general perception of IT professionalism, we gathered input from representatives of member organisations via the questionnaire “IT: The Nature of the Profession”, which began by asking for motivations behind joining ITPE.
We took note of three key reasons:
1) Sharing and learning from best practice
2) Gaining influence
3) Leveraging the link with the TC428 workgroup
The participants were also asked to express what IT professionalism means to them. Their answers reflected the four pillars of IT professionalism, and covered education and training, the professional ‘Body of Knowledge’ (BoK), continued improvement and development of skillsets (competences) and professional ethics. When comparing the answers, we noted that ‘education and training’ was seen as the most relevant of the pillars by the participants (see figure below).
Importance of IT Professionalism Pillars
In addition, we asked for potential solutions that IT professionalism may provide in the organisations. The answers focused heavily on HR and skills development, in which more professionalism can help bridge skills gaps, build curricula, help IT professionals become more involved in strategic processes, define job profiles and contribute to flexible and effective business solutions. According to the respondents, lack of accountability and responsibility in companies, as well as lack of confidence from their staff, could also be better addressed if greater attention were devoted to IT professionalism and the right frameworks created.
The key obstacles preventing organisations from achieving IT professionalism goals were identified as the lack of a ‘common language’ and awareness of available solutions, as well as the comprehensive internal changes that organisations need to make for adapting to new staff cultures and procedures. The participating members also listed ideas of what could improve the current situation in their organisation, and IT professionalism in general. They emphasised the importance of promoting and implementing standards and frameworks (in particular the e-CF), as well as raising awareness about IT professionalism, ensuring organisational transformation and also active engagement from IT professionals themselves in seeking training and available resources to improve. Organising events and workgroup sessions, providing publications on different standards and promoting the usage of specific formal trainings for specific requisites in IT-positions are key activities, according to the participants, for moving IT professionalism in the right direction.
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