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  • A strong, vibrant workplace culture nearly always leads to high employee engagement, while a weak one usually results in poor morale, low productivity and high turnover. Why do some organizations' cultures thrive while others fail? A recent survey from CultureIQ provides some insight. The resulting report, "Building a High-Performance Culture: Key Lessons from Top Cultures for 2017," distinguishes companies that are "winners" (they score the highest on collaboration, innovation, agility, support, wellness, work environment and mission/value alignment) and "non-winners." Companies that excel remain true to their mission and values, with leadership teams that earn their employees' confidence. They often offer opportunities to learn new things, while encouraging staffers to question the status quo. These staffers are also very clear about what determines success in their roles. "Organizational culture is your company's competitive advantage," according to the report. "Two companies can have the same product, service, number of employees and perks, yet completely different cultures. By evaluating your organization's unique culture, you empower yourself to make informed decisions that can strengthen strategic behaviors in a way that supports long-term business goals. With culture as a competitive advantage, companies can function at a higher level of innovation, productivity and profitability." More than 28,370 employees took part in the research.

  • After acquiring the AITP, CompTIA has been focusing on advancing the careers of IT professionals in ways that go beyond training materials and certifications.

  • Tech employees are seeing a significant gap between what they aspire to accomplish on the job and what they actually end up doing, according to a recent survey from Carbonite. The accompanying report, "A Portrait of the IT Professional," reveals that IT professionals spend the majority of their time troubleshooting, assisting users, conducting routine IT maintenance and documenting tickets. Not that there's anything wrong with these tasks, but they're reactive and routine compared to what IT pros would rather do: Modernize tech operations and plan for future technology innovation. "IT pros are pressed for time and too often focused on routine maintenance and troubleshooting—foundational duties that are essential to keeping businesses secure and growing," according to the report. "But too often they don't get the time they need to learn new technologies and make strategic contributions. They're constantly seeking ways to create more efficiencies, allowing them to focus on tasks beyond the most basic, tasks that would bring them more career fulfillment and would bring increased benefits to the organization." Additional findings reveal various working life details about tech workers, as well as their mitigation responses to ransomware attacks, and we've included some of those here. More than 150 IT professionals in the United States and Canada took part in the research, which was conducted by Spiceworks.

  • It's no secret that IT professionals have to cope with many unexpected situations during the workday. Unpredictability comes with the territory as digital enterprises become more sophisticated and complicated. But what might be surprising is the amount of time those unplanned activities consume every day: almost one-third of working hours. That's among the key findings of "The 1E 2017 IT Incident Response Report," a survey of IT professionals conducted by 1E, a provider of software lifecycle automation solutions. The study shows that operational issues such as outages and troubleshooting take up the most time, followed by help desk issues. Sumir Karayi, founder and CEO of 1E, found the amount of time spent on unplanned incidents surprising. "We didn't think it was this high," he said. "It's also striking that it takes five times longer to resolve issues than to identify the problem." The larger the enterprise, the greater the likelihood that it can take more than a week to resolve issues. Karayi said survey results underscore a need for tools that will help IT staffers identify and remediate ad hoc problems more quickly. The survey is based on responses from 1,014 IT professionals, including 306 respondents from companies of 50,000 or more machines. Participants manage a total of more than 21 million endpoints globally, with an average of 21,080 endpoints each. About half of the survey respondents are administrators, and about a third of them are managers.

  • The average salary for U.S. technology professionals has risen significantly over the last five years, but IT employees' satisfaction with their paychecks has declined slightly over the same period of time, according to a recent survey from Dice. The resulting "Dice Tech Salary Survey" reports that merit raises and internal promotions are helping to drive up compensation levels. In fact, systems architects, security engineers and project managers can expect to make well into six-figure territory. And if you're an independent consultant, you can boost your earnings potential far beyond what your full-time counterparts make. Still, a significant number of IT pros anticipate leaving their employers for new opportunities this year, and the promise of better compensation remains the top motivator. The bottom line: The tech industry is moving at a dizzying pace, and employees who keep their skills up to date can often command top dollar. "Skills that were used a year ago may not be as prominent today; skills that are relevant today will evolve tomorrow," said Bob Melk, president of Dice. "This creates a marketplace where both tech professionals and employers must keep their fingers on the pulse of skills training and demand. The skills areas which garnered salary increases indicate where professionals and employers should focus their training and recruiting efforts." More than 12,900 tech professionals took part in the research.