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October 19, 2016

The most important element in delivering on the promise of IT and the tremendous investment that organizations make in it, is the team of people behind the technology. 

Recently, George Batsakis, CSRA’s Chief Growth Officer, shared his thoughts on the importance of having the right teams in place to effectively deliver next-generation IT solutions to complex organizations like the federal government.  What he meant by ‘the right teams’ in this instance are the people who not only possess exceptional technical skills and next-gen mindsets, but who “prioritize collaboration and value cross-functional working relationships, as well as…[a] drive for success.”

So where do you find ten of these amazing individuals, let alone enough to staff the teams that CSRA needs to deliver on its ever-growing list of contracts? 

Well, that’s my job.  But, when I say it’s my job, like most activities at CSRA, I’m one part of a much larger team that’s working together to identify, recruit, and retain talented individuals.  My colleague Leigh Palmer, Executive Vice President for CSRA’s Intelligence Group, who has a passion for finding and retaining top talent in her area of national security, intelligence, and defense, is a great example of this.  Colleagues like Leigh, lend their energies and their insights into creating a next-generation recruiting and retention environment that makes finding CSRA’s next employee a sure-fire success.

From a company perspective, we want to make sure that our current and future team members are welcomed into a strong, imaginative, dynamic and agile environment. With CSRA’s evolution over the last year we’ve been able to create a company that has the strength and security of a long-established organizational legacies combined with the more agile mindset and energy of a new company.  And we’ve sought to bring that unique combination into every aspect of our team members’ work lives from the benefits we offer, to opportunities for career advancement (including a focus on building next-gen IT certs).  Our  strong foundation enables us to provide the traditional benefits that employees are looking for – healthcare and wellness programs, 401K matching, and parental leave – and our agility enables us to offer programs that promote flexibility, that meet our team members’ commitments to work and family. 

The combination of a strong foundation and agility in the government contractor space, plus benefits that actually deliver on their promise, are often the starting point in finding the types of colleagues we’re looking for; whether it’s at the college-level where we work with students to build their careers through internships; or assisting our future team members to complete their clearance requirements during the last semester of college so that they can become fully engaged in their project on day one at CSRA; or, helping women return to the workforce after taking leave for childcare responsibilities through upskilling, tech refresh, and offering many non-technical mission-critical opportunities, CSRA is committed not only to finding extraordinary talent, but also to investing in its people.

Nowhere is this commitment more tangible than in the challenging stage called ‘mid-career.’  For mid-career professionals transitioning from public service, or looking for a more innovative work environment, CSRA has re-imagined what this phase of a person’s career might look like. For example, we’ve included a military skills translator tool on our careers website to help convert and match veterans’ military skills to open CSRA job opportunities. We also recently launched “CSRA Academy” where we support our workforce in attaining technical certifications, skill and management training, leadership development and employee sponsored programs where team members teach colleagues about a variety of industry topics. We want our people to enjoy great experiences and build a career with us for the long term.   

As Leigh commented in a conversation we had recently about this topic of recruiting and retaining our mission-ready teams – both inside the Beltway and for our new Integrated Technology Center in Bossier City, Louisiana – “our most successful team members are the ones who are passionate about their lives in all dimensions, those who embrace next-gen IT, but particularly about supporting the most critical mission our country has – our freedom, well-being and our national security.”

 

A version of this article originally appeared on Federal Technology Insider.