To whoever manages SQL Server DBAs\developers\BI specialists:
Yesterday afternoon at PASS I stuck my head into a presentation Kevin Kline was giving on end-to-end performance monitoring/tuning. He had reached the point where he was starting to talk about wait stats and asked the question "Who here is familiar with wait stats?" I saw one hand in a room of over 100 go up. That scares me.
If this were 2002, where everyone was still working on SQL 6.5, 7.0 or 2000, I could understand it. It isn't that wait stats didn't exist on those platforms, they weren't very cleanly exposed. But it's nearly 2011, SQL 2005 has been out for awhile now. The dynamic management views for viewing waitstats (dm_os_wait_stats,dm_os_waiting_tasks) should be well known. These are critical tools to really understanding where performance issues happen, in many cases (for queue or signal-type stats) the ONLY way to identify an issue.
Now I can't imagine that room I look into was full of DBAs running SQL 2000. That leads me to believe that the main issue is a lack of knowledge out there - a general lack of training.
Events like the PASS Summit are great for absorbing information, but yes, its expensive. It's hard to justify in a budget the cost of travel, hotel, not to mention the work not being done back at home base. But there are lots of way to encourage training amongst your staff, at relatively low cost. PASS has virtual chapters and events, there are one day events like SQL Saturday, plus a ton information all over the web. Local user groups are a great resources as well - there's probably one near your company.
Please, please, give your employees some dedicated time to do some sort of self-training, attending online seminars, anything. With the pace of change and the complexity of technology, it is no longer reasonable to expect employees to do this on their own time. Relying on consultants for "the heavy stuff", while some times necessary, will stagnate the skills of actual staff. Invest in your employees. Please. Let them learn. Encourage them to learn. Budget for them to learn. Require them to learn.