Retaining top talent has never been more difficult. With the continual need for businesses to keep growing and evolving, new ways to attract and engage their talented employees must be identified. According to research by Mercer, nine out of ten organizations anticipate their competition for talent to increase. The research also reveals that 85% of businesses admit their talent management programs and policies need an overhaul.
A Study by Oracle uncovered similar trends. But only 3% of workers saw the HR department as having an important role in driving employee engagement. The requirements for HR couldn’t be clearer. Companies looking to retain the best workers should update and expand their employee development process. Employees, now more than ever desire proactive and regular interactions with their managers and expect their organizations to place a focus on implementing strong employee engagement initiatives.
Clearly, there remains a gap between the engagement programs being run by the business and HR, and what employees now expect from their employers. So how can companies create a culture that attracts the best people and keeps them on board?
Invest in understanding your employees: One of the first steps is to understand what motivates and engages your employees. This means that HR, along with line managers should work towards mapping out employee journeys from the time of onboarding to retirement. This will help understand the points of friction that may arise so they can do whatever is possible to mitigate them. The approach is not different from the way retailers and customer service teams map out the journeys customers make.
Enable regular dialogue: The days of annual reviews are long gone, so organizations should ensure that there are multiple opportunities for employees to feel that they are both appreciated and that their needs are understood. This will only happen when line managers and senior team members have frequent, focused discussions with employees about their career path and progress.
Follow-up on action items: If employees feel nothing comes from their talks with managers they will be more inclined to seek a company that delivers on its promises. Our research found that less than one-third of employees believe their company is proactive about engaging with them. The time has come for a change in how businesses communicate with their people.
Employees are every company’s most precious resource – indeed, as well as in word. HR must take the lead in fostering an employee-focused work culture where development, training, education and support are treated as a priority and a true dialogue exists between employees and their managers. Companies that adapt to this new reality will be in the best possible position to ensure they have the right talent to achieve their future ambitions.