I have been noticing a significant increase in the number of talent management-related jobs in the market. In the last few months it seems that there is a torrent of roles being advertised on LinkedIn and Glassdoor for talent management practitioners from Head of/ and Senior Manager to Specialists. Globally and locally organizations seem to be taking the ‘war for talent’ very seriously!
Apart from the increased visibility of the above job ads, the accompanying job descriptions and requirements make excellent reading. It provides an insider view of what organizations are feeling anxious about, what their pain points are and the degree of creativity and urgency they express to find the ‘silver bullet’ to their talent management needs.
But it’s not just me. Reputable consulting firms like Gartner and McKinsey and/or job platforms, like LinkedIn are producing talent management reports and articles at a rapid rate. Some argue that the ‘war for talent’ has been replaced by the ‘talent divide’, which suggests the shift in power away from the employer to the employee. COVID-19 has brought forward the power shift.
As the post-Covid workforce appears to jealously guard the flexibility that remote working allowed, fewer and fewer employees are prepared to return to full-time office roles. Despite the erstwhile Pretoria boytjie, Elon Musk’s insistence that Tesla employees should all return to the office or find alternative employment, flexible life-work balance appears set to stay, according to Forbes.
The above aspects suggest that an intensification of talent management efforts can be expected. To prepare themselves, organizations wishing to stay ‘ahead of the game’ may benefit from addressing the following questions:
- Do you have a specific talent strategy? Have you recently re-visited it?
- Does your business have the same objectives that it had 5 years ago, and if not, do you have an updated workforce plan that points out the skills gap between what existing employees offer and what your anticipated future skills needs may be?
- Do you know who the high potentials in your business are and do you have a means of fast tracking their readiness for succession rather than recruiting externally? It has been found that companies that excel at developing employees and promoting within (internal mobility) are able to retain employees nearly twice as long as those that who struggle with it.
- If you recruit externally (or wish to retain your existing staff!), what is the employee value proposition (EVP) that you communicate and does it differentiate you from others in your industry? (Have a look at Google’s for inspiration). Why would prospective employees want to work for you instead of your competitors?
- How effective/professional is your talent acquisition process, i.e. do you make it easy for applicants to apply?
- How long do you sit on applications or how long do you take to inform candidates of the outcome of their applications? Have you recently updated your talent acquisition KPI’s to raise the bar?
- Have you been able to successfully identify your high potentials or ‘best talent’ employees? See how you can do this.
- What (new) measures do you have in place to ensure that your high potentials and best talent are happily engaged in your business? How are you keeping them interested? Are you succeeding in creating a culture of peer recognition for goals successfully achieved, using tools such as Kazoo?
- Are you making use of talent management software with engagement, skills and competency features or stacking it upon your more traditional HRIS or payroll systems?
- Are your employee development, training, up-skilling attempts up-to-date, stimulating and best-of-breed? LinkedIn’s 2022 Workplace Report suggests that employees want to learn and use new skills. If they don’t, they may be significantly more likely to start looking for another job.
These are just a few questions, but it may greatly help you to ride the storm of finding and keeping the right talent for your business! Good luck.