North American IT shops may well be facing a staffing perfect storm. Two big challenges are certain--a mass retirement of baby boomers that promises to deplete staff and starve many companies of critical skills, and a shortage of replacements due to a smaller crop of college graduates and a dramatic decline in students majoring in and planning to enter IT-related fields.Rust writes that "As older workers exit, along with them go technological skills, industry and company knowledge, and seasoned judgment, including how to weigh the many factors that go into decision-making." However, a cultural divide will be created as yung people entering the workforce can be expected to embrace future advances without any reserve or difficulty, while "mature workers are unlikely to have the same readiness."
Meanwile, according to the Ovum report:
There are a number of steps that companies can take now to address current requirements and many others that corporations, in partnership with government organizations and educational institutions, must take to pre-empt even greater challenges in the future. The first step, however, is to do something that only a small percentage of US corporations have done--acknowledge the nature and extent of the problem and the need to address it.Source: Rust Report Age gap strikes IT (October 26, 2007)