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An evaluation of factors affecting professional obsolescence of information technology professionals

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3 Author(s)
Trimmer, K.J. ; Univ. of South Florida, Tampa, FL, USA ; Ellis Blanton, J. ; Schambach, T.

Design and development of effective information technology (IT) based systems depends upon a staff of competent information technology professionals (ITPs). Due to the rapid pace of technological innovation, diverging application of IT, and changing role responsibilities of ITPs, it is becoming increasingly difficult for ITPs to maintain up-to-date professional competency. Recent research suggests that, because of outmoded knowledge and skill deficiencies among their IT staff, some firms purposely forgo implementation of emergent technologies. Although not previously examined in IT research, professional obsolescence threats have been acknowledged and evaluated in referent research. Psychologists studying the engineering discipline have suggested individual characteristics, nature of work, and organizational climate as being important determinants of obsolescence. The purpose of this research is to evaluate the relationships between manageable work context factors and degree of professional competency, or conversely obsolescence of ITPs. Structural equation modeling is employed in evaluating the plausibility of the direct-effects model of professional competency. This field study used questionnaires to obtain 161 usable self-report responses from systems analysts. Validity of self-reports were verified using cross-reference ratings from respondents supervisors. The results of this study suggest that individual personality differences and factors of the work environment do effect professional competency levels. Overall, the research model accounted for 44% of the variance in information technologist professional competency

Published in:

System Sciences, 1998., Proceedings of the Thirty-First Hawaii International Conference on  (Volume:6 )

Date of Conference:

6-9 Jan 1998