IT Talent Management


The lack of IT talent in the labor market leads to competition between employers for the most qualified skilled workers - a phenomenon known as "war for IT talent". Our research shows that effective management by organizations is necessary to successfully recruit and retain these talents. We also point out that complex strategies are required to meet the needs of these professionals on the one hand, and to attract new target groups (e.g. women, lateral recruits) to the IT domain on the other.

Topic of research

From a strategic perspective, IT professionals are a critical component of an organization's performance - effectively managing these talents can improve performance, innovation and competitive advantage. IT talent management essentially aims at strategies that ensure the availability of qualified specialists. Practice and research agree on the point that this is not about a single "one fits all" strategy - recommendations are rather aimed at a comprehensive portfolio of adaptable strategies and measures that meet the individual needs and opportunities of the organizations. In this context, our research investigates current topics around IT talent management and focuses in particular on the experiences and perspectives of IT professionals as well as females, who represent a promising target group of IT talents.

Experiences and Perspectives of IT Professionals

Recruiting and retaining a sufficient number of IT talents remains a challenge for organizations. Our research focuses on the career paths of IT professionals with regard to recruiting junior staff, career development and job mobility. Our study results illustrate how important it is for organizations to present themselves as attractive employers. IT talents have specific requirements and preferences with regard to their activities and the working environment to be fulfilled in the course of recruitment and retention. With our research, we further show that a multitude of reasons can fuel the intention of IT talents to resign their job or lead to a change of employer ultimately.

Women in IT

The so-called IT gender gap has been the subject of intensive discussion for several years now. This can be traced back to the need for more employee diversity in the IT sector, which ultimately results from the existing dominance of male IT professionals and the underrepresentation of women. Our research addresses the causes and reasons that prevent women from embarking on an IT career or ultimately lead to female IT talents turning away from or ending a career in IT. In our studies, we show that young women in particular associate specific stereotypes with IT studies and the IT work area, based on which they decide to study a different subject. With regard to female students who have explicitly decided to study IT, our results point to a variety of reasons for their choice, but also to the challenges that young women have to master during their studies.

Practical relatedness

The shortage of IT professionals and the demand for more employee diversity in IT departments has been a major challenge for organizations for some time now. We focus on in-depth research that uncovers the most diverse backgrounds as well as their interrelationships. We want to provide organizations with sound knowledge for the development of individually coordinated, holistic strategic approaches.

In the press

  • IT-Bewerberinnen fehlen Vorbilder, 19.11.2017 (Printausgabe) Westdeutsche Allgemeine WAZ; Westfälische Rundschau; NRZ Neue Ruhr Zeitung; Westfalenpost
  • Informatik-Jobs: Nur rund 15 Prozent Bewerberinnen, 11.11.2017 (Printausgabe) Berliner Morgenpost
  • Her mit den weiblichen Nerds!, 16.3.2017 Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ)

Selected publications

  • Maier, C., Laumer, S., Eckhardt, A., and Weitzel, T. (2015): Who really quits? A longitudinal analysis of voluntary turnover among IT personnel; ACM SIGMIS Database 46:4, p. 26-47,
  • Eckhardt, A., Laumer, S., Maier, C., and Weitzel, T. (2015): The effect of personality on IT personnel's job-related attitudes: Establishing a dispositional model of turnover intention across IT job types; Journal of Information Technology 31:1, 48-66,
  • Oehlhorn, C., Maier, C., Laumer, S., and Weitzel, T. (2019): Attracting Young IT Professionals: An Empirical Study Using the Theory of Attractive Quality; Proceedings of the 2019 on ACM SIGMIS CPR Conference, Nashville (TN), USA, , dx.doi.org10.1145/3322385.3322393
  • Oehlhorn, C. (2018): The Paradox Evaluation of IT Stereotypes - A Post-hoc Analysis of Women's Decision against IT Studies; Proceedings of the 24th Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS), New Orleans, LA, USA