In a data warehousing hiring market where talent is hard to come by, developing a "team environment" will help managers keep personnel motivated and improve employee retention, Maureen Clarry and Kelly Gilmore, co-founders of Littleton, Colo.-based Connect, The Knowledge Network, told conference attendees November 6 at TDWI World Conference - Fall 2001 in Orlando, FL.

To assess talent, managers should consider initiating a personnel "skills inventory matrix." The purpose of the matrix is getting employees and managers to self-assess their business, project planning and technical skills. A typical matrix, for instance, breaks out workers into novice, intermediate, advanced and expert categories. The matrix, written in the form of a questionnaire, may ask IT workers to rate themselves as a "novice" or "expert" for a data warehousing function such as performing E/R data modeling or designing a source data detection and extraction process. Once the results are compiled, the IT manager can then assess where the department has the best technical and business skill sets and where management may need to hire an additional worker or bring in a consultant to fix a particular problem.

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