The War for Talent is a term coined by Steven Hankin of McKinsey & Company in 1997. Later it became the title for a phenomenally successful book, outlining strategies for grappling with what Hankin had already identified as a key problem for any business wishing to be successful in the new millennium. Due to the simple, undeniable fact that more people would be retiring from the job market than those entering, there was a looming talent shortage.
The future is now. Despite an economic downturn in 2008, the reality is, the war for talent is in full swing. Strategies for survival are a huge part of HR focus these days - because, as we all know, the quality of your team can make the difference between success and failure.
Grow Your Own
The experienced HR executive will know the list of to do’s: redouble recruiting efforts and establish a continuous feed, ensuring your succession planning is three levels deep at all times. Think ahead – have the wherewithal and ability to scout and hire new talent and work to bring in qualified staff. By far, what’s the most effective way to win the war for talent? Grow your own.
Recruit the raw talent and use your own training program to turn new prospects into the qualified employees you need. This practice applies to every level within your organization. From health and safety qualifications for entry level staff through to an Executive MBA for senior managers a well-managed training program makes good sense. Using a combination of face-to-face sessions, online learning (Moodle anyone?) and perhaps even offsite learning via third party providers, training should become the cornerstone of your people strategy.
If you set this course (pardon the pun), you won’t be alone. A recent study by Deloitte found that US spending on corporate training grew by 15% last year (the highest growth rate in seven years) to over $70 Billion in the US and over $130 Billion worldwide. Clearly, there is a skills gap and corporations are investing in Corporate Training programs for a good reason.
Attract and Retain Talent
This not only helps build your team, it aids in both employee attraction and retention—critical in today’s competitive landscape. The generation Y candidate who - let’s face it - has many choices in terms of employment, wants to make sure they’re joining the right company, where they will be afforded the opportunity to advance in a timely fashion. Your hiring managers will be able to use your internal training program as a key selling tool. Once the candidate is on board, additional training also keeps them happy while they wait for their next promotion. In other words, investment in training sends a clear message to your employees—that you value them.
Go with a TMS
Human resources and organizational development practitioners are, therefore, lining up, looking for the tools to make sure the job is done right. We’ve seen increased interest from our clients who are looking to implement a Talent Management System (TMS), because just having a learning platform isn’t enough anymore. Tracking and assessing employee development is a key component of your corporate training program. If you are working within a regulated industry where certain specific training courses are mandated, a good LMS will also make your company audit ready.
Looking for more ideas on how to improve your employees' performance and engagement? Register for our upcoming webinar.