CIOs Tied to Their Jobs on Evenings, Weekends

CIOs were asked how often they check in with work on evenings and weekends, and 50 percent said they do so often.

It appears that there is no set clocking out time for most CIOs, a Robert Half Technology survey revealed, with the vast majority (73 percent) of CIOs checking in with work "often" or "somewhat often" on evenings and weekends.

The survey, based on more than 2,300 telephone interviews with CIOs from a random sample of U.S. companies in 23 major metro areas with 100 or more employees, asked CIOs how often they check in with work on evenings and weekends, and 50 percent said they do so often, 23 percent said somewhat often, and 12 percent said they check in infrequently. Just 14 percent said they never check in outside normal business hours.

"For most CIOs, the job doesn't end at the close of business," John Reed, senior executive director of Robert Half Technology, said in a statement. "With weekend software deployments, and customers and end users around the world who require around-the-clock technical support, IT groups typically operate 24/7, and CIOs often need to be available if critical issues arise."

Reed went on to add that not being able to remove themselves from work can actually be less than productive. "It's beneficial for even the busiest IT professionals--including CIOs--to disconnect when possible,” he said. “Taking a break from work allows technology leaders to recharge and approach their work with fresh perspectives."

The company offered four tips to CIOs on how they can limit after-hours work for themselves and their teams, including focusing on top-priority efforts, understanding the staff workload, avoiding micromanaging and respecting co-workers’ schedules.

Fourteen percent of U.S. CIOs surveyed by the company in March said they plan to expand their IT teams in the second quarter of 2013. In addition, 61 percent of CIOs said they will not be adding positions but will fill IT positions that open in the next three months. Twenty-two percent will not be hiring, even to fill an open position, and 2 percent expect to reduce their IT staffing levels.

Respondents cited networking (16 percent), data/database management (13 percent) and applications development (12 percent) as the most challenging functional areas in which to recruit, while overall 70 percent of CIOs surveyed said it's somewhat or very challenging to find skilled IT professionals today. The survey results also suggest that CIOs are optimistic about their companies' growth and IT investments.

The vast majority (89 percent) of CIOs reported being somewhat or very confident in their companies' prospects for growth in the second quarter of 2013. In addition, nearly three-quarters (72 percent) of CIOs also said they were somewhat or very confident that their firms would invest in IT projects in the second quarter of 2013.