Every business owner knows that its business is only as good as its employees. The HR department looks after the acquisition, retention and transition of the organisation’s employees. It is their job not only to attract top talent, but also to keep it. However, there multiple reasons why this may become a difficult task.
Acquiring Top Talent
The recruitment space is fiercely competitive, with competing HR teams trying to attract and acquire the best talent into their organisations. They may entice people with good benefit packages, flexible working hours, attractive salaries and bonuses’, a good work culture or further career and development opportunities. However, getting the right person on-board is only the beginning of the journey. Next, the HR teams must work to retain that person.
According to 2019 Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) survey of baby boomers, the average number of jobs one has is 12 throughout their working lifetime. The notion of having one long-term job from graduation to retirement is no longer one that people find believable, or aspire to. People transition between companies to find a better work/life balance, to increase their salary, for promotions, due to redundancy or bad management, as well as multiple other reasons. Millennials in particularly, are known for job-hopping. A recent Gallup report on the millennial generation showed that 21% millennials have changed jobs within the 12-months. This is over three times the number of non-millennials. With over 50% of the workforce in 2020 made up of millennials, HR teams must work even harder to retain their talent.
There is no one simple way to retain your best talent, but you can start by understanding their needs, career and personal aspirations and motivations. For instance, you cannot expect to retain an employee who has always wanted to live on the other side of the world, or someone who has a desire to work for a particular charity due to personal reasons. However, you can discover more about your employees throughout their time with you and make strategic decisions or offerings that you know will help to retain them for longer.
Although millennials are known for moving from company to company, pwc finds that Millennials are ‘hungry for training and development’ and that significant retraining and upskilling is the answer to closing the skills gap. It is not as important to millennials to stay within one specialist field. HR professionals can use this information to provide training programmes aligning with the wider business goals.
Let’s think about people leaving their roles due to redundancy. This is an interesting issue, as just because a role is redundant, does not necessarily mean the employee is not wanted within the company. However, how can one keep an employee with a certain skill set that is on longer required? It is becoming increasingly popular to offer these people the opportunity to retrain into a different field, thus redeploying them within the business. This has many benefits. The organisation retains a great asset; the employee learns new skills and add strings to their bows and, they become more invested in the business as they develop further skills and working relationships.
Staying ahead of this is where HR teams can really make a huge difference to a business reaching its full potential. By understanding the direction the business is moving towards and forecasting the job roles the company will need in the future against its current workforce. HR can then create a picture and have better understanding of the future business needs. Then there is time to discover hidden skills within the workforce, offer training and reskilling, get to know what motivates the employees and develop strategies to align the business goals with top talent.