Article: Retention of talent: challenge or opportunity?

Strategic HR

Retention of talent: challenge or opportunity?

The changing nature of talent and business is an opportunity to create an engaged talent pipeline
Retention of talent: challenge or opportunity?

It is critical that HR managers understand the requirements of the organisation


Capability building is the cornerstone of acquiring business and retaining customers. However, given the diverse talent landscape today, hiring is an extremely challenging task: One may not always get the right candidate in terms of cost and quality. In such a scenario, hiring talent that can be trained to meet business needs in a short time is an option that merits serious consideration. Another practice frequently seen in large organizations is hiring from within. Yet another strategy is to outsource jobs that are not a part of the core competency of the business and that have higher gestation period for capability building. Thus, it is crucial that HR managers understand the requirements of their organization, and hire, develop and nurture talent to meet those needs.

Changing nature of talent

More than 40 percent of India’s population today comprises young professionals who are ambitious, inquisitive and refuse to accept anything at face value. They seek transparency in their dealings, and are motivated by their need to be engaged in something meaningful and relevant. In today’s rapidly changing market scenario, where the prerogative is no longer the employer’s alone, but also the candidate’s, managing such talent has become the real challenge, and as HR managers, it is essential that we understand the aspirations of these young professionals and develop new channels of communication.

Changing business imperatives

The specialized needs of modern businesses have redefined hiring. The pressures of time and cost notwithstanding, the primary challenge is to hire competent people who are aligned to the basic tenets of the organization. The competitive edge of the business now lies in the organization’s ability to acquire talent. Overall, the market realities that pose a challenge to the business– speed, scalability, cost effectiveness, quality, etc. – are the same problems HR departments face when hiring new talent. Attracting able candidates and developing a talent pipeline is the key result area for hiring. Creating an employer brand, generating awareness, partnering with and leveraging sourcing channels, maximizing technology interventions, and aligning to the ethos of the company are some of the steps in the right direction.

‘Model employee’ versus ‘model employer’

The model employee for most organizations is someone who is industrious, dedicated to her/his responsibilities and passionate about the company’s goals. S/he should be uncompromising on integrity, yet driven by her/his desire to better himself and succeed. However, the matter does not end with simply identifying and hiring the model employee. The bigger challenge is to fashion an environment that is conducive to create the model employer as it were. Since all aspirations have a shelf life, it is up to the HR managers to develop training methods and shape career plans that allow employees to not only increase the level of their competencies and learn new skills, but also explore opportunities within the organization rather than look outside.

The future looks bright

The ongoing skirmish for talented professionals has spurred HR managers to devise innovative attraction and retention tools and strategies. To contain attrition, they must demonstrate that hard work and loyalty are rewarded. Once employees realize that their future in the company is secure, the road ahead is only going to be bright.

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Topics: Strategic HR, #ExpertViews

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