In an increasingly difficult recruitment and retention environment, how you position your business could make all the difference.

The term ‘War on Talent’ was first coined by McKinsey & Co in the late 1990s. At that time competition for jobs was becoming more and more global, companies were dealing with an aging workforce and people were beginning to get more comfortable job hopping.

Fast forward to 2022 and the War on Talent is more immediate than ever. Recruiters are calling it a job hunters’ market where they can pick and choose a role.

More and more, younger, in-demand, candidates are choosing to work with companies that align with their personal beliefs. Where a company stands on sustainability, equality, social justice and work models are as important to some potential employees as salary.

The pre-pandemic extras like breakout pods, free lunch and on-site gyms are no longer enough in an environment where the talent in some sectors can make demands of their own.

Of course, salary continues to be important but it’s vital to find ways to disrupt compensation-based competition in this War on Talent.

An obvious place to start is with the hybrid working model that a lot of companies have already adopted. There is a very strong desire for flexi time that accommodates both work and life, but there is also an understanding of the need for collaboration. What a lot of people want now is an option. They want colleagues, in-person events and meetings, along with the flexibility to work from home for a portion of the week.

Coming up quick on hybrid’s heels is the four-day work week. It’s a development that has a lot of employers concerned, but many of those same people were worried about productivity rates for hybrid working before the pandemic came along and proved it could be done.

David McCarthy, Head of Business Transformation at 3SIXTY says that employers must adapt. The way we work is set to fundamentally change over the next few years and how we manage that may determine our success.

“Our experience has shown us that we can adapt and overcome seismic shifts in how we run our organisations and how we manage our people. The opportunity now is to embrace this learning. Remember one size does not fit all and fluidity is key as businesses evolve their work model.

“A deep mindset shift is critical to breaking the cultural and habitual barriers from the past. There is a need to appreciate and manage unconscious biases toward any new model for the workplace relating to perceptions on ‘Performance’ and ‘Productivity’.

“Organisations will need to shift focus from ‘time’ on tasks to ‘delivery/output’ on tasks. Key metrics will need to show productivity as the strongest indicator of performance. They will also need to assist their leaders, teams, and employees in evolving that mindset shift not just for those in the office but those working from home also. Wellbeing in the workplace will need to be reshaped to better support individual needs in a new model of working setting.”

What a lot of employees and potential recruits are looking for now is development. A recent survey by US insurance firm Prudential found that 80% of job hunters say that growth opportunities are a driving factor in their job searches. Prudential vice chair Rob Falzon admitted, “If there’s one thing that keeps me up at night, it’s the talent flight risk.”

To that end a key part of employee retention now must be learning to re-recruit your employees regularly. It’s always more cost effective to retain staff than to recruit new teams and while it’s easy to say that there are paths to promotion, it’s another to be seen actively implementing those.

David McCarthy agrees and believes it’s important to have open and honest communication with your employees.

“Speaking with your teams via pulse checks, workshops and 1-1’s is critical to ensuring you are fully informed of the actual culture that exists as well as knowing where to focus individual and team development planning.”

The fancy perks of 2019 are no longer enough in this climate to attract or retain staff. It’s not about cool offices or coffee clubs. In the War on Talent, it’s about being a good employer and getting the basics right. It’s about leadership and connecting people to the purpose of the organisation.

3SIXTY will work with your team to unlock the collective power of your staff and support increased productivity, high levels of engagement in a culture of appreciation and wellbeing that will ultimately enhance the customer experience. Talk to us…

Published On: May 5th, 2022 / Categories: Insights /
Brian O’Brien

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