Information Technology Professionals Want Perks, Too

FRAMINGHAM, MA –JUNE 5, 2000– Despite all the public hype about huge salaries and stock options, the leading employers of technology professionals say it is the investments in training, career development and work/life balance that are the key to recruiting and retaining talent.


In its annual ranking of the 100 Best Places to Work in IT, Computerworld, an information services company for the IT Leader community, reveals that IT staff respond to the same types of work-life balance and skills enhancement programs that are effective in attracting and retaining all types of employees.

The Computerworld report, which will be published in weekly installments during June, finds that non-technology companies often can provide highly attractive environments that allow IT professionals to grow and thrive. For example, based on their innovative employee programs, Home Depot and United

Stationers are included in Computerworld's initial ranking of companies in the

June 5 issue, on newsstands this week.

To compile this prestigious ranking, Computerworld surveyed chief information officers (CIOs), vice presidents, directors and managers of IT at U.S.-based companies and major consulting firms with fiscal 2000 revenue of $500 million or greater and a minimum IT staff of 15 employees. The results of the study will be published in a four-week series of articles.

Some highlights from the initial Computerworld "Best Places to Work in IT" report include:

— The Home Depot Inc. boasts a low 3.5% turnover rate among staff in its more than 950 stores, thanks in part to the thousands of dollars the company invests in training. Moreover, Home Depot involves its IT staff in all aspects of the business — not just keeping the computer systems operational.

— United Stationers of Des Plaines, Ill., accommodated a programmer's request for flex time so she could spend more time at home with her children. Allowing employees to play a larger role in managing their work schedules helps retain talented IT staff with sought-after skills.

— Tampa, Fla.-based Teco Energy Inc. believes in providing all employees with life skills that they can apply to their jobs. The company fulfilled an IT staffer's request to study Spanish, although the new skill did not apply directly to his job responsibilities. As this IT staffer ultimately hopes to transfer to Teco's Guatemalan operations or work with Hispanic commercial accounts, the training has served to create and retain a motivated, loyal team member.

"A revolving door of IT staff makes it difficult for a company to remain competitive and stay on the cutting edge of technology trends," said Maryfran Johnson, editor-in-chief of Computerworld. "Many companies have realized that in order to retain a talented, motivated staff, they must create an environment in which employees can balance their career objectives and personal goals and responsibilities."

The Best Places to Work in IT report can be found throughout June in the print issues of Computerworld and online at

Computerworld Inc. is a complete information services company for the IT Leader community, providing print and online publications, books, conferences and research services. The company's flagship weekly newspaper for IT Leaders has been recognized numerous times by Folio: Magazine and the Computer Press Association as the best computer newspaper.

Computerworld, with a circulation of 250,000, is read by more senior-level managers than any other IT newsweekly, according to IntelliQuest CIMS v.6.0. News and resources for the IT Leader community are available through Computerworld's Web site at

Computerworld is based in Framingham. Computerworld is a business unit of IDG, the world's leading IT media, research and exposition company. IDG publishes more than 300 magazines and newspapers and 4,000 book titles and offers online users the largest network of technology-specific sites around the world through (, which comprises more than 270 targeted Web sites in 70 countries. IDG is also a leading producer of 168 computer-related expositions worldwide, and provides IT market analysis through 50 offices in 43 countries worldwide. Company information is available at