Recent survey data released by Mercer offers a peek into the timing and competitiveness of what is likely to be an upcoming war for talent. You may be saying to yourself, “War for talent? What? Our business is still suffering from the recession!” Point taken.
Yet, to ensure the long-term success of your organization, now is the time to start focusing on keeping the top talent in your organization on your bus, and planning to invite other top talent in the marketplace to climb on board with you.
In May 2010, Mercer polled HR and talent management leaders at more than 400 U.S. organizations as part of its annual Future of Talent Management survey. As to the current status of the businesses:
- 22 percent were never out of growth mode and were not significantly affected by the economic downturn
- 15 percent have emerged from the recession and are in growth mode
- 37 percent are emerging from the recession and preparing for growth
- 25 percent are still in recession mode
So, even if you are among the 25 percent of companies still in recession mode, 75 percent of businesses are already planning to acquire your top talent and/or the additional talent in the marketplace that could help drive your business results in the future.
In addition, more than half of the surveyed employers (51 percent) rate talent management as a top priority in their organization today, and 76 percent expect it to be a top priority within the next three to five years. Even more telling, a full 97 percent expect an increase in competition for key talent in that same three- to five-year horizon, with 58 percent anticipating a significant increase in competition for the key talent their organizations need to succeed.
What types of talent management activities can you undertake now to help you retain your best employees and position your organization to be an attractive option for future employees?
- Identify the top employees in your organization. Talk to them and tell them they are an essential part of your future. Ask them what is most important to them in the employer-employee relationship. It may not be what you think.
- Determine what measures you can take now to reward employees who have remained solid performers as your organization has been affected by the recession. If pay raises are not possible, use your discussions with employees to identify non-monetary rewards that will be perceived as an excellent benefit.
- Start looking for skill gaps in your organization. Does each one of your employees have the training they need to be successful in their job? What will it take to get them there?
- Plot out a growth strategy. If your business grew by 10 percent, what workforce adjustments would have to be made to accommodate that growth? What would be your priority order for hiring?