Dx and Workforce

The impact of Dx goes far beyond our existing work. It also creates completely new jobs and requires a new set of skills and competencies across the institutional community. In this section, we’ll discuss what to expect from the effect Dx will have on the workforce and how those changes in workforce can support and enable Dx.

Leading the Charge on DEI 

One hallmark of Dx is active institutional commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), making it essential that leaders advance DEI practices within their institutions.

The Challenge

Challenge (Dx and Workforce)

Leaders must prepare for changes to existing jobs and the emergence of new roles and necessary skill sets across the entire higher education workforce. You must ensure technical staff understand the “businesses” of the institution and are able to collaborate deeply and communicate effectively.

The Goal

Goal (Dx and Workforce)

A workforce that enables Dx is characterized by greater institutional accountability for career growth and talent management, along with increased emphasis on work/life balance, flexible schedules, and work locations. This results in better workforce engagement and increased retention.


64%

New leadership positions are being created as part of workforce shifts. In our 2019 survey, sixty-four percent of respondents said their institutions had hired new student success leaders. Forty-nine percent pointed to new leadership in data and analytics.

“We've seen cross-functional meetings that before were almost impossible to schedule. We've seen a different style of project management now because we've had to be able to turn on a dime. We're embracing rapid decisions and rapid action. And we're able to see a little bit of diversity because now we can reach out and expand—we can bring in people from all over.”

Kirk M. Anne
Director of Research Computing, Rochester Institute of Technology
Kirk M. Anne
Kirk M. Anne
Director of Research Computing, Rochester Institute of Technology

Advances in Workforce

Institutions are embracing workforce transformation, resulting in a blending of roles and blurring of boundaries between IT and academic/administrative/research areas. Dx will bring about new jobs and roles and a reinvention of human resources.

Leading by Example

At the University of South Carolina, efforts to collaboratively manage data access started taking root with the leadership of a chief data officer.

Read the Case Study
64%

New leadership positions are being created as part of workforce shifts. In our 2019 survey, sixty-four percent of respondents said their institutions had hired new student success leaders. Forty-nine percent pointed to new leadership in data and analytics.

“We've seen cross-functional meetings that before were almost impossible to schedule. We've seen a different style of project management now because we've had to be able to turn on a dime. We're embracing rapid decisions and rapid action. And we're able to see a little bit of diversity because now we can reach out and expand—we can bring in people from all over.”

Kirk M. Anne
Director of Research Computing, Rochester Institute of Technology

Workforce Case Study - USC

At the University of South Carolina, efforts to collaboratively manage data access started taking root with the leadership of a chief data officer.

Read the Case Study

The Impact

Transformation of Work and Skills

  • Continuous role agility
  • Additional workforce competencies in continuous improvement and service management 
  • IT liaison roles to align with the expanding role of data and digital technologies in research, administration, and teaching and learning

Institutional Workforce Management 

  • Institutional agility and flexibility in restructuring the workforce to adapt to rapid, ongoing changes
  • Greater institutional accountability for career growth and talent management

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

  • A focus on DEI literacy across the institution
  • Increased emphasis on work/life balance 
  • Flexible work schedules and locations

The Impact

Transformation of Work and Skills

  • Continuous role agility
  • Additional workforce competencies in continuous improvement and service management 
  • IT liaison roles to align with the expanding role of data and digital technologies in research, administration, and teaching and learning

Institutional Workforce Management 

  • Institutional agility and flexibility in restructuring the workforce to adapt to rapid, ongoing changes
  • Greater institutional accountability for career growth and talent management

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

  • A focus on DEI literacy across the institution
  • Increased emphasis on work/life balance 
  • Flexible work schedules and locations
Featured Article

Driving Digital Transformation in Higher Education

Dx is a journey with multiple paths and many stages. It is not a single transformative initiative but a process of increasingly consequential transformations. Regardless of where higher education might be on the Dx journey, though, we can all work together to better understand Dx, to share and learn from our collective experiences, and to build better models and stronger capabilities for Dx in the future.

Learn More

Resources

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Actionable Steps for Campus Leaders

  1. Learn how to reskill and restructure your workforce often and rapidly, requiring institutional-level coordination and strategy.
  2. Train incumbents as well as new hires to be ready to adapt to a shifting landscape that requires regularly learning new skills and rapidly adjusting job descriptions, roles, and jobs.
  3. Ensure an institution-wide commitment to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  4. Support work/life balance with flexible schedules and work locations while offering professional development, training, and career growth.
  5. Cultivate the talent pipeline to retain promising staff members early in their careers.

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