Tag: Talent Attraction

59% of European employers find it difficult to attract candidates

Research from SD Worx, European HR & payroll services provider, has revealed an intensifying tug-of-war for talent as British companies rally to deliver on hardened employee expectations and land new team members.

Based on a survey of 4,371 companies in the UK and across Europe, the findings highlight a red-hot recruitment battle and a new power shift in the job market, with the balance tipping firmly in favour of employees.

When it comes to attracting candidates, 59% of European employers are facing difficulty. That figure is significantly higher in Belgium (65%), the UK (59.1%), the Netherlands (54%) and Ireland (53%). Countries such as Sweden (32%), Italy (32%), Norway (31%) and Spain (29%) seem to have a slightly less difficult time attracting employees.

In fact, over half of UK employers (51.8%) say it’s never been more difficult to attract talent.

Recruitment efforts stall as jobs boom

The picture is similar across Europe, underlining the new state of play in a job market where the war for talent is now employers’ most urgent challenge. The research also sheds light on how current employers are arming themselves in the battle to attract new employees, with over two-thirds (68.7%) of European companies surveyed indicating that they have never had such a hard time positioning themselves as attractive employers.

Overall, six in ten European employers indicate that filling vacancies is currently taking longer.

Colette Philp, UK HR Country Lead at SD Worx, commented: “Recruitment issues are now running at record highs with companies facing a raft of major challenges to overcome at speed to keep apace in the heat of an intense war for talent.

With an unprecedented lack of availability in the workforce, our research confirms that employers will have to be more inventive and investment orientated to ensure business growth and survival. This means thinking strategically to open up new pools of talent in the existing workforce through investing in training and development as well as instituting the new, yet hardened, employee expectations of flexible working hours and arrangements to land essential talent.”

Talent shortage

European employers find it particularly difficult to find candidates with the right skills. For 56% of the companies surveyed in Europe, this is the biggest challenge in the war for talent. The figure is even higher among Belgian (70%), Italian (63%) and German (61%) employers.

New business models and digitisation are increasing the demand for new profiles. This new search points to a changing economy shaped by low employee availability and brings to light a new hardened business imperative to secure the right talent with the right skillset.

Looking toward the future of the jobs market, European employers cited five core areas that will determine companies’ ability to attract top talent:

– 35% of employers put working hours and flexible working arrangements as a major priority

– 34% of employers said job security and financial stability are in the top five

– 34% said employees value the work atmosphere and social environment

– 32% identified meaningful, interesting and challenging work as key

– 27% of respondents said training and development opportunities are important

Philp concluded: “From a top to bottom level we need to rethink how we do recruitment. This means paying careful attention to new learning curves, opportunities for development, and the adaptability of potential candidates for a job. Right now, it’s a job hunter’s market and the onus is firmly on employers to step up to new expectations by hitting all the right notes in terms of pay, flexibility, purpose and culture. But despite the urgency, employers don’t have to support that switch alone.  For example, they can make use of education and training, or they can work with interim contracts. This way companies can still succeed in filling vacancies while increasing employee potential. Taking this fresh approach to recruitment practice has enormous potential to reshape not just growth and productivity but also employees’ very own career trajectories with a company.”

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81% of employers have implemented sign-on bonuses

According to the WTW 2022 Mid-year Compensation Survey, employers are using a number of strategies to attract and retain employees. From increasing flexibility to sign-on bonuses, employers are having to think out of the box as the hiring market remains tight.

The survey found that 71% of employers have difficulty attracting and retaining employees with digital skills while 66% said the same for professional employees. For hourly roles, 61% of respondents said they are having difficulty hiring and keeping workers.

To help attract and retain workers, WTW found that employers are:

  • Hiring employees at the higher end of salary ranges, 86%.
  • Increasing flexibility in where employees work (for example, home versus office) and how they work, 84%.
  • Offering sign-on bonuses to attract talent, 81%.
  • Using retention bonuses to keep employees, 65%. Organizations that are enhancing the use of retention bonuses are most likely to target such bonuses to managers (82%) and professionals (80%).
  • Increasing training opportunities, 55%.

Lesli Jennings, North America Leader, Work, Rewards and Careers at WTW commented: “Employers are leaving no stones unturned in their battle to find and keep talent.”

The WTW survey also found employers are revising their salary budgets to hire and keep workers. Respondents said they are planning or considering:

  • Boosting their current salary budgets, 44%; 23% already have done so.
  • Adjusting salary budgets throughout the year on an as-needed basis, 46%; 22% already have.
  • Making more frequent salary adjustments throughout the year; 7% already have.
  • Adjusting salary ranges (i.e., minimums, midpoints and maximums) more aggressively, 46%; 18% already have.

The survey took place between May 23 and June 16. It involved 884 organizations in North America that employ more than 15 million people.

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A recession should not have any impact on staff turnover or retention

Predictions of a spiralling economic crisis will be another blow to businesses’ hiring headway but according to Steven Jagger, founder of tech recruitment firm Maxwell Bond business leaders should “revamp” their culture in order to weather the looming recession and avoid a Great Resignation 2.0.

The arrival of the so-called Great Resignation this year hit the headlines and saw UK businesses’ staff turnover and attrition rates hitting record levels. But experts are forecasting another blow once the impacts of inflation, the cost-of-living crisis, and the recession come into full force.

Steven Jagger, Founder, Maxwell Bond commented: “An economic crisis shouldn’t leave you clutching at straws and panicking. Staff will always be loyal – if you give them reason to be. Employees don’t leave workplaces and colleagues – they leave bad leadership, toxic culture, or a lack of vision for your team and business. Ask yourself, when was the last time you looked at these and revamped your vision?”

Jagger was quoted saying that while a recession would be another blow to businesses when they’re already down, it shouldn’t have any impact on staff turnover or retention if your business’s culture is right.

The founder of the award-winning tech and digital recruiter whose clients include the BBC, Reckitt Benckiser, Barclays, TalkTalk, and Mastercard, believes talent retention “is a skill in itself” and that many leaders “fail to see the importance of it in times of adversity”.

Jagger continued: “By industry standards, we should have experienced higher attrition rates than we have to get to these numbers, but we founded the company on the values of prioritising people, especially our staff, above anything else.

“A recent Deloitte report shows only 56 per cent of employees think their company’s leadership cares about their wellbeing – contrasted to 91 per cent of leadership believing their employees think they care. This disconnect is a big player in staff turnover.

“Companies need to go the extra mile to attract and retain candidates if they want to hit their hiring aspirations, stay ahead of their competitors, and weather the incoming storm. In times of adversity, it’s understandable that survival instincts are to slash headcount and starve spending – but this short-term logic leaves firms bare once the turmoil is over.

With that being said, he understands employers can be afraid of the “T word” (turnover), wrongly perceiving that it reflects their leadership and values: “Some level of turnover, whether facing economic hardship or not, is part of any healthy organisation. If you train people up, they may leave to progress further and take on a higher role or they may be poached by another company for their skills and talents.

“Either of these scenarios means that as their employer, you did your job properly. Remember: running water never goes stale.”

But Jagger says to take heed: “Retaining someone who doesn’t fit the company values can easily make the whole infrastructure fail,” he says. “Put a bad apple amongst good apples, the good ones will eventually turn bad and leave.”

Maxwell Bond has grown by 4,000 per cent since its inception five years ago, despite weathering numerous economic crises, and has seen a further 45 per cent increase just in the last six months. The firm took no financial support from the government during the pandemic.

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“Trinnovo Group is purpose-led with a mission to build diversity, create inclusion, and encourage workplace innovation.” – Richard MacMillan, Chairperson, Trinnovo Group

In April, Trinnovo Group made two announcements: the appointment of Richard MacMillan to the Board of Directors as Chairperson as well as the launch of its fourth brand Equiris Consulting.

NEW CHAIRPERSON
Richard has a 25-year history in the staffing industry was CEO of health and life science staffing and services company called Independent Clinical Services (ICS) for 14 years. He led the growth and diversification of ICS through three periods of Private Equity ownership until it sold in September 2020. During his tenure, ICS completed multiple acquisitions, expanded its international presence, and developed several innovative healthcare services.

Richard commented: “Trinnovo Group is an exciting and dynamic business led by exceptionally talented people and I am delighted to join as Chairperson. Trinnovo Group is purpose-led with a mission to build diversity, create inclusion, and encourage workplace innovation. They have a unique and exciting approach to the full talent cycle. The business is flourishing, and I look forward to working with the team as they continue to diversify the business and grow internationally.”

James Cox, Trinnovo Group CEO also commented: “I am delighted to have Richard join us as Chairperson. Richard’s track record in international growth driven by an entrepreneurial and technology focused approach is second to none. The Board and I are hugely excited to work with Richard and to continue disrupting the recruitment sector via our people and delivering our vision, to be the fastest organically growing and most impactful recruitment business on the planet. Ashley Lawrence continues to support the group working with the Trinnovo Board in his new role as Founder.”

NEW BRAND
The announcement of the new brand, Equiris Consulting will enable high-growth businesses to attract, retain and develop amazing people and high-performing teams that are representative of society by ensuring that the world of work is a more inclusive and equitable place for everyone.

Equiris is a talent consultancy and solutions provider with a diversity, equity, and inclusion methodology that is focused on the full talent lifecycle including attraction, assessment, onboarding, learning and development and retention.

TIARA Recruitment Award winners 2021, Trinnovo understands that every business is unique, and focus on building strong relationships that enable them to truly understand their clients’ business strategies. This focus enables them to embed bespoke talent solutions into clients’ businesses that help them achieve sustainable growth while ensuring that diversity, equity, and inclusion are at the forefront of their strategic agenda. It works closely with its sister brands, specialist recruitment companies Trust in Soda, Broadgate and BioTalent, to offer a full wrap-around DEI focused talent solution.

Cara Myers, Talent Advisory Director at Equiris Consulting commented: “I am so incredibly excited to be launching Equiris Consulting. Across our social enterprise and unique platforms, we have inspired a lot of change within the workplace and worked hard to make it a place that is more inclusive for everyone. We recognised, however, that we have an opportunity to do more, and to not only inspire change but to also work with our clients and partners to offer very targeted DEI focused talent solutions that enable high-growth companies to scale in a way that is diverse, equitable and inclusive.”

James Cox, Trinnovo Group CEO also commented: “The Board and I are hugely excited to launch Equiris Consulting. We created Equiris Consulting because we want to provide solutions that enable high-growth, tech-enabled businesses to grow in diverse and sustainable way. We are on a mission to build diversity, create inclusion, and encourage workplace innovation, and we are excited to see the impact that will be delivered through our new talent consultancy and solutions provider.”

 

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Starting salaries show a record rise

According to the latest KPMG and REC, UK Report on Jobs survey, candidate shortages have slowed down hiring in both permanent and temporary recruitment. Even though expansions are high based on previous records, the increase rates hit 11- and 12-month lows, respectively.

The report, compiled by S&P Global, is based on responses to questionnaires from around 400 UK recruitment and employee consultancies.

The survey found that overall staff supply had the steepest drop in four months. Those surveyed attributed the candidate shortages to the low unemployment rate and uncertainty related to the pandemic and the war in Ukraine. Other reasons included fewer EU workers and robust demand for staff.

The candidate shortage has led to significant increases in starting salaries – the salaries for new permanent employees rose at the quickest rate in 24 and a half years. In addition, the average wages for temporary workers also increased at the fastest pace in three months.

Although all UK regions showed increases, there were variations in the various English regions. The Midlands showed the steepest increase in permanent placements, while the lowest increase was in the South of England.

Further variations were noted between the private and public sectors, with the largest expansion in demand being in the private sector.

The IT and computing industry continues to show the steepest increase in demand. Conversely, the softest increase was in the retail sector.

Neil Carberry, Chief Executive of the REC, commented: “We can clearly see that labour and skills shortages are driving inflation in these latest figures. Starting salaries for permanent staff are growing at a new record pace, partially due to demand for staff accelerating and partially as firms increase pay for all staff in the face of rising prices. Record COVID infection levels are also pushing up demand for temporary workers, particularly in blue collar and hospitality sectors, underpinning the ability of temps to seek higher rates.

“However, the overall number of placements being made is starting to stabilise. This is no surprise after a period of historically high growth, and in the face of more economic uncertainty. Even so, the jobs market is very tight. Businesses will need to broaden their searches and be creative in making their offer to candidates more attractive, in consultation with recruitment experts. But government can help by incentivising investment in skills and people during the inflation crisis.”

Claire Warnes, Head of Education, Skills and Productivity at KPMG UK, said: “There’s no end in sight to the deep-seated workforce challenges facing the UK economy. Once again this month, job vacancies are increasing while there are simply not enough candidates in all sectors to fill them. With fewer EU workers, the ongoing effects of the pandemic, the economic impacts of the war in Ukraine and cost of living pressures, many employers will continue to struggle to hire the talent and access the skills they need. With unemployment staying low, there are many great opportunities for job-seekers to join or rejoin the workforce in all sectors.”

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The Great Escape and The Great Resignation result in mass exodus of workers
According to a new report by Kincannon & Reed, the disruption and upheaval caused by the pandemic during the last two years has resulted in a dramatic ripple effect across many industries, including those that ensure a safe, secure and abundant food system. Supply chain disruptions, labor shortages, implementation of safety equipment and protocols, along with the fact that stay-at-home orders upended standard operating procedures and forced on-the-spot decision making for all levels of the workforce. This, coupled with endless Zoom calls and dealing with on-edge customers and consumers, and simply supporting teams manage the ‘new normal’ made for an environment that business leaders have never seen before. It’s enough to make a person throw in the towel. And many have.

The pandemic has forced members of the workforce to take stock and re-prioritize their lives and careers – leading to a mass exodus of staff that the HR industry has dubbed “The Great Resignation”.

Scott A. Scanlon, CEO of Hunt Scanlon Media, has called it the ‘Great Escape.’ Older workers have also taken advantage of early retirement as part of the normal employment work cycle. According to the New School’s Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis, roughly two million more people than expected have joined the ranks of the retired during the pandemic.

With skills shortages and The Great Resignation hammering the market, questions we should be asking are: How should company leaders manage an unexpected exodus? How can they attract new talent while also retaining the great leaders?

Kincannon & Reed’s Carolyn Schubert, Managing Director, and Jim Gerardot, managing partner, say leaders should consider five key points as they navigate this constantly evolving environment:

1. Prepare Talent for Leadership

“Many senior leaders retire for various reasons,” said Ms. Schubert. “It’s a double whammy for an industry that has also been a victim of the Great Resignation. The problem is the industry hasn’t done a very good job of succession planning and preparing others within their ranks to take on leadership roles. Companies need to put a solid succession plan in place to train, keep and promote talent.”

2. Treat Recruits Like CEOs

Ms. Schubert says the fact that there simply aren’t a lot of people changing jobs has created a talent war. “To attract and retain the best of the best, you must be forthcoming with candidates and let them know what’s possible beyond the job you’re recruiting for,” she said. “Act like you’re recruiting for a CEO job because the candidate you’re interviewing could be your next one.”

“During the recruiting process, share your financials, strategic vision and long-term goals; give candidates an opportunity to interact with board members,” said Ms. Schubert. “Make them feel important and let them know they’ll be a part of the organization in a larger way.”

3. Show Them the Money

Mr. Geradot says that today’s candidates are looking at total compensation – short and long term. “They are seeking and comparing specifics on benefit packages, relocation incentives, signing bonuses, as well as long-term incentives – all considerations when looking to attract top candidates in today’s market,” he said.

4. Be Transparent

“Be fully transparent about company culture, structure, and benefits, and the future,” said Mr. Geradot. “The current war for talent means the brightest prospects are inundated with opportunities, so they’re being selective and doing their homework to better understand a company before they step foot in the door (or log onto Zoom) for an interview.”

5. Prepare to Sell Yourself

There was a time when companies, particularly legacy companies, had the attitude: “The top candidates will want to work for us,” said Mr. Geradot. But that’s not the case anymore.

“Instead of potential employees having to sell companies on the value they can bring, the tables have turned,” he said. “Companies are in the hot seat – having to prove themselves – and start-ups seem to have a leg up on speaking to culture, values, purpose, and perks.”

 

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Manpower Group recently launched Talent Solutions, combining three of its offerings. TI sat down with Talent Solutions to learn more about the launch of their Talent Solutions Brand in 2021 and how it came about. Here’s what they had to say.  

TI: Can you tell me a little more about Talent Solutions (size, number of employees, locations served etc)? 

With 40+ years of experience delivering client-focused, technology enabled, innovative workforce solutions to the market, Talent Solutions delivers expertise to organisations across the talent lifecycle.  

We manage over £10 billion of spend in our Managed Service Programmes; we deliver 250+ Recruitment Process Outsourcing solutions to clients around the world; and we’re supporting some of the world’s largest organisations on their journey towards Total Talent Management. 

Our ability to capitalise on new thinking, new workforce models and new possibilities has made us the most recognised and respected workforce solutions provider in the world – as benchmarked by leading industry analysts. 

Across the UK, we have over 550 people working for Talent Solutions, with offices in Altrincham, Bristol, London, Edinburgh and Southampton, as well as client sites throughout the UK. 

TI: ManpowerGroup recently launched Talent Solutions (combining three of its offerings). What was the company’s reasoning behind that? 

Talent Solutions combines three of ManpowerGroup’s global offerings – RPO (Recruitment Process Outsourcing), TAPFIN MSP (Managed Service Provider) and Right Management – providing innovative solutions and end-to-end, data-driven capabilities across the talent lifecycle through one brand.  

TI: What opportunities does the new offering bring to the group? 

This new combination of offerings will leverage deep industry expertise and a strong understanding of what talent wants, delivering new solutions to address organisations’ complex global workforce needs. 

TI: Were there any challenges when it came to launching it? 

Talent Solutions was introduced in the UK on the 31st March 2020, a week after the UK was put into lockdown in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, we took the decision to adjust our plans in the UK, taking a much lower-key approach to the introduction of the new brand.  

Whilst this wasn’t how we envisioned sharing the new brand, it was appropriate given the difficult times everyone was facing. Since then, we have been working on raising awareness of our new brand and the value we can bring to our clients.  

TI: What makes this offering unique? 

With the combination of RPO, TAPFIN MSP and Right Management, Talent Solutions is able to provide seamless delivery of end-to-end workforce solutions that help clients to navigate risk, cost, efficiency and quality while facing changing and uncertain markets.  

Employer brand 

TI: How has the company been developing its employer brand in recent years? 

With the launch of Talent Solutions, we’ve introduced new imagery which focuses on learnability and the opportunity for individuals from all backgrounds to progress in the organisation. Across the wider business, we highlight the breadth of opportunity for new experiences across the organisation, whether that’s with our different ManpowerGroup brands, or working directly with our clients across the UK. 

TI: What role does employer brand play in the attraction and retention of talent? 

An effective employer brand strategy is one of the most important aspects of a successful recruiting function and we believe that this will become even more important in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. To build a compelling employer brand, you should focus on being authentic in sharing communication of your purpose and the connection that you develop with your candidates, and being consistent in your communication and approach with every candidate. 

Attracting and retaining talent 

TI: What are you looking for in a potential member of staff for your team? 

Whilst knowledge of the industry is an important attribute, with any new employee, we look for individuals with high levels of learnability and adaptability. This increases the likelihood that they can adapt to new opportunities and changing environments and job requirements. 

Given the size of our organisation and the different brand structures, it’s also vital that a potential member of staff demonstrates a positive attitude to team working. A collaborative approach helps to drive better results in our business. 

We also don’t just recruit those with experience working for recruitment organisations, considering the relevance of their external knowledge to our market and the market of our clients. 

TI: How does the company go about attracting emerging talent? 

We have a wonderful Talent Team that operates across ManpowerGroup, helping us to attract the right talent for our organisation. In 2021, we also launched our internal talent academy, designed to bring people with no experience of recruitment into the business, put them through an initial training programme and support them as they start their career with ManpowerGroup. 

TI: How does the company use training and development to retain staff? 

We’re very fortunate that ManpowerGroup puts a considerable amount of investment into training and development to help employees progress in their careers.  

As well as having access to an extensive library of online training, we also offer our employees access to Advanced and Higher Apprenticeships as well as leadership programmes with organisations such as Harvard Business School and INSEAD. 

Outsourced hiring 

TI: What benefits does outsourced hiring bring to a company? 

Run correctly, outsourced hiring can offer companies a number of benefits. At Talent Solutions, we focus on providing customers with greater predictability and flexibility of costs, a more efficient recruitment process, an improved candidate experience and importantly, improved talent quality.  

TI: How do you ensure you’re delivering maximum value to your clients? 

Across ManpowerGroup, we focus on the 4 B’s – Build, Buy, Borrow and Bridge – when working to develop effective talent strategies and deliver maximum value for our clients. Each stage involves: 

  • Build – Invest in learning and development to grow your talent pipeline 
  • Buy – Go to the external market to find the best talent that cannot be built in-house in the timeframe required 
  • Borrow – Cultivate communities of talent outside the organisation, including part-time, freelance, contract and temporary workers to complement existing skills 
  • Bridge – Help people move on and move up to new roles inside or outside the organisation 

Enhancing hiring 

TI: Where do you think improvements are needed in the hiring process? 

One of the areas that we see most frequently which needs improving is how organisations manage their silver medallists through the hiring process. Whilst that individual may not be the best candidate for the specific role businesses are hiring for at the time, companies could benefit from reviewing whether there are any other suitable roles for them in the organisation. If nothing is available, then they should be kept on file (subject to data restrictions) for any future relevant roles. 

Crucial here, as with all hiring, is getting the candidate experience right. This is often something which is neglected in our busy work environments. Candidates are ultimately consumers too, so even if they’re not the right fit to work in your organisation, they may still be a customer, but only if you treat them with respect throughout the process. Introducing technology at the right stages of the hiring process can help you to streamline the process more effectively, allowing more time to provide the human touch.  

TI: How could technology be used to enhance hiring further? 

From Robotic Process Automation, to our Talent Solutions PowerSuite, which creates the flexibility to tailor our offerings to meet evolving client and candidate needs, we’re continuously developing our technology capabilities and working with our partners to provide clients and candidates with the best technology to support their hiring processes.  

Some of the key areas where we see further opportunities to enhance the hiring process using technology are through improved use of chatbots, On-Demand Interviewing and Search and Match technology. 

Hiring trends 

TI: What hiring trends has the company been witnessing recently? 

The most obvious trend having an impact on hiring at the moment are the talent shortages we’re seeing across the board. We’re seeing a continued increase in hiring intentions, with a 30 year high of +32% (ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey, Jan 2022). However, in many cases, clients are unable to meet their hiring needs due to a shortage of talent. We’re working closely with our clients to help them find the skills they need, by thinking differently about their talent strategies.  

TI: How do hiring trends and patterns differ across the countries you operate in? 

Operations in each country are assessing the changing trends in every location to make sure they are aligned to the customer needs.  

TI: What is Talent Solutions doing to counter skills shortages in certain sectors? 

Talent Solutions has a number of different solutions to support clients facing skills shortages. We support our clients to develop talent pipeline management, to ensure they have the individuals they need, when they need them. This can be done through a range of techniques including bridging their current employees into other areas of the business through training or providing Employed Consultants. Employed Consultants are highly skilled specialists who are permanently employed by Experis (part of ManpowerGroup), and then supplied on an interim basis.  

We also work with clients to build Train to Fit programmes, taking individuals who already have a range of technical and functional skills which are valuable to their business, and have the aptitude to develop further. We create a training programme in partnership with the client, helping individuals advance their knowledge to the right level and meet the needs of the role over an agreed period of time.  

On top of these solutions, Talent Solutions also has the benefit of skills development programmes across the wider ManpowerGroup business, including the MyPath programme in Manpower, which helps associates upskill and develop along their career path. MyPath associates are provided with personalised guidance, career development, training and continuous access to jobs – helping them to achieve their ambitions and meet employers’ needs today and in the future.  

Diversity and inclusion 

TI: Are companies doing enough to be truly diverse and inclusive? 

There is always room for improvement in this area. But it’s clear that businesses are waking up to the need to be truly diverse and inclusive. It’s now on the agenda for every leadership team, with many businesses taking big steps towards active inclusion, rather than just paying lip service. At ManpowerGroup, we created seven steps to conscious inclusion in the workplace: 

  1. Change yourself first 
  1. Leadership has to own it; don’t delegate it 
  1. Flip the question – ask, “Why Not?” 
  1. Hire people who value people 
  1. Promote a culture of conscious inclusion: programmes alone don’t work 
  1. Be explicit; when and where?  
  1. Be accountable; set measurable and achievable outcomes 

Managed correctly, one of the potential opportunities to come out of recent turbulence could be the removal of some of the barriers to the workplace for more diverse groups. For example, the increased acceptance of remote working and flexible hours could help businesses to become more inclusive for those with care responsibilities. 

TI: What is Talent Solutions doing to support improvements in this (both internally and for clients)? 

We’re working with our clients to share advice around implementing the seven steps to conscious inclusion. We’re also advising them on strategies for reaching and attracting diverse groups when advertising for new roles. 

We’ve also recently strengthened our commitment to inclusion and diversity globally, committing to: 

  • Reaching our primary global diversity goal of 40% female leadership by 2024 
  • Investing in our inclusive culture to retain and develop diverse talent 
  • Advancing employment security for the long-term; reskilling, upskilling and improving wellbeing and employability for all 

In the UK, we’ve also launched our Supplier Diversity Initiative, a commitment to developing relationships with diverse suppliers who enhance the solutions we offer to our clients. We will be supporting diverse suppliers to accelerate their growth and ability to succeed in the marketplace, as well as helping others to become more diverse and inclusive. The result is optimal client solutions and partnerships within a world of diverse and high-performing talent. 

Looking to the future 

TI: What are your plans for the company over the year ahead? 

As building talent increases in importance in workforce planning and development, we will continue to support our clients and candidates through the further development of our Academy offerings – ensuring that we are upskilling individuals for the jobs of the future and providing the skills that our clients need to grow and progress. 

Using our expertise in ESG, we’ll enhance our support for clients around Diversity, Equality and Inclusion, helping them to improve in these vital areas at the same time as accessing potentially untapped talent pools as part of the strategy for overcoming skills shortages.  

In response to ongoing volatile market conditions, we’ll also continue to increase the flexibility of our solutions, using our Centres of Recruitment Excellence (CoRE) to ramp requirements up and down as needed and supporting across the Total Talent Management lifecycle. Our Agile RPO solutions will continue to expand, meeting the need for short to medium term support for internal recruitment teams. 

We will also continue to work with our new and existing clients to help them meet changing workforce requirements post COVID-19.  

TI: What outsourced hiring trends do you expect to see in the year(s) ahead? (Will there be an increase in in-house hiring?)  

With the increased pace of change in customer demands impacting upon workforce strategies, we anticipate an increased need for businesses to speak to external experts for advice to help them continue to run their organisations as efficiently as possible. This will provide them with an outside in perspective from people who have a view of the wider market.  

Understandably, we also expect to see demand for flexibility from candidates continue, as many will have experienced the potential benefits during lockdown.  

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As we come out of the pandemic, the economy has bounced back faster and stronger than anyone imagined and the number of jobs available are at record levels.

In general, it is always wise to treat dramatic headlines or simple phrases with a large pinch of salt. My rule of thumb is this: does the person promoting the headline have an interest in it being true? If so, approach with caution.

Likewise, any survey that takes ‘intent’ and translates it into ‘certainty’ should also be handled with care. For example, a statement that ‘60% ofcandidates intend to change jobs in the next six months’ does not mean that is what’s going to happen. For the last 10 years I have fully intended to lose 10kg and do a triathlon and yet both are but still unachieved!

Which brings me to the ‘great resignation’. Despite the ubiquity of the phrase, it’s been surprisingly hard to find compelling evidence to support that it’s actually happening.

Let’s look at the evidence in favour. As we come out of the pandemic, the economy has bounced back faster and stronger than anyone imagined and the number of jobs available are at record levels. It is also a fair assumption that there is an element of catch up from candidates who have wanted to change jobs since last year but were nervous about doing so. Another factor is that September is historically an active month for jobs changes.

It is also increasingly understood that employers who refuse to consider more flexible working patterns or who appeared indifferent to the challenges of their employees during the pandemic may suffer some sort of backlash. But the ‘great resignation?’ I’m not so sure.

Let’s consider the other side of the argument. Many industries are still very challenged with employees terrified, not just about changing jobs in their sector, but about losing the one they have. There are still around one million workers about to come off furlough which will have some impact on re-dressing the imbalance in the labour market.

And if we are to talk about the ‘great resignation’, we must also look to its equal and opposite force ‘the great retention.’ The vast majority of HR and TA people can not only read, but they can count and think and figure out that something needs to be done. Whether that’s increasing salaries (around20% should do it) creating more flexible working patterns even for employees who are still required to be on site for 100% of their jobs, looking at innovative learning and development initiatives and so on and so on, they know they need to respond, and they are.

So yes, we do have a truly unique labour market right now, and no, the mismatch between supply and demand won’t last forever. In the meantime there will be a higher degree of market movement than usual but ‘the great resignation?’ I don’t think so.

Whilst the pandemic has changed many things, it hasn’t changed the fact that the best employers attract and retain the best talent but that doesn’t make much of a headline.

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