How to Find the Talent You Need and Keep It

14 Jun

Strategic human resource management is the key to finding the talent your company needs, but it’s also how you will ultimately retain that talent and improve your return on employee investment.

According to data from the ManpowerGroup’s latest Talent Shortage Survey, nearly 49 percent of the 1,000 U.S. employers participating in the survey reported that a shortage in talent has impacted their ability to do business. That being said, there has been a significant improvement in closing the talent gap.

Last year, 49 percent of employers reported difficulty sourcing appropriate talent—a figure that dropped by nearly 10 percent in 2013. A large reason that more companies are finding better talent is a result of the increasing use of human resource systems and software to manage talent management initiatives that ensures employees are aligned and developed for maximum productivity and contribution to the business.

Changing Game Plans
Positions in the skilled trades and specialty professions continue to be the hardest positions to fill. As employers face job seekers who lack the technical proficiency required in the job, many are mixing up their strategies.

Companies are revising their talent strategies. In addition to implementing HR solutions to extend into untapped talent pools, 23 percent of businesses are prioritizing development from within by training existing employees in the skills they will need. Even more promising, businesses are recognizing that, even though a candidate may lack the necessary technical skills right now, hiring managers have begun to forecast an employee’s potential to learn and prosper in the workforce in the near future.

There are companies out there that realize that just because candidates may have everything lined up on paper doesn’t necessarily make those candidates a fit for the company. Quick thinking and personality tests are just some examples of how employers are assessing a candidate’s drive, versatility, and a willingness to learn and collaborate—intangible attributes that often matter as much as technical qualifications.

Retaining Your Dream Team
A recent CareerBuilder survey got a pulse on the ways employers are seeking to reward and retain employees on their payroll. Of the respondents in the CareerBuilder 2013 Hiring Forecast, a majority cited increases in compensation were the best way to retain employees. Nearly 72 percent of participants plan to raise existing employee pay, while 47 percent intend to raise starting pay to attract new talent.

An employee’s income is only a small sliver of the bigger retention pie. The survey also revealed that 58 percent of employers valued alternative forms of compensation, perks and add-ons that they found employees valued.

Yes, competitive benefits and opportunities for growth are major players. But one less tangible, but equally important, alternative perk is a positive work culture. Derek Irvine, vice president of client strategy and consulting at Globoforce, says he encourages HR professionals to stop thinking about retention in terms of perks.

Often, employers can create a positive workplace environment by showing employees how much they are valued with specific, relevant, and frequent recognition. Sure, a stocked refrigerator or a massage chair make for good talking points, but a reinforced positive culture at work is priceless, and it will become the touchstone employees return to in order to assess future opportunities.

To locate the talent you need and keep it takes a sound human resources strategy that is, perhaps, grounded with employee engagement ideas that reward the pocketbook as much as they reward performance.

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