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Talent Management Needs More Attention

One of the first studies I read to start 2012 was conducted by Manpower.  It stated that most employees say that their job is unrewarding and saps their energy.  This followed Manpower's study published in January 2011 that found 84% of their study's participants planned to "actively pursue other employment in 2011."

Talent shortages are cited as a key business challenge by more than 50% of business leaders

Bersin & Associates, a leading talent management research and services firm, reported this in an article they published last year.  In a more recent piece referenced in a March/April 2012 TCHRA (Twin Cities Human Resources Association) publication, Bersin & Associates made a strong business case for talent management.  They reported about companies that chose to be strategic in their talent practices.  Their found the following key benefits:
  1. They generate more than twice the revenue per employee.
  2. They experience 40% lower turnover rates.
  3. They achieve 38% higher levels of employee engagement.

Why do companies fail to keep their best talent?

A recent article in Forbes listed 10 reasons large companies fail to keep their best talent.  Here are just a few of the top findings:
  • Big company bureaucracy - the number one fact leading to disenchanted employees.
  • No discussion around career development - while most employees do not know what they will be doing in 5 years, most employees want to have a discussion about it - and in the context of their current employer.
  • Top talent likes other top talent - exit interviews often find people leaving their companies because they were turned off by the lack of performance management they see when there are obvious employee performance issues that have not been addressed.
  • Lack of open-mindedness - companies hire talented people because of the skills/new approached they bring, but then expect them to behave within narrow company norms.
Bersin & Associates suggests some actions companies will need to take to address what they labeled War for Talent 2.0.  These actions address both retention and recruiting priorities:
  • Build deep skills quickly
  • Actively establish relationships with prospective employees
  • Implement integrated talent management programs
  • Work to create a vibrant, highly empowered work environment
One of the conclusions that can be drawn from the Bersin studies and the Forbes article is that smart organizations will be the leaders that get out in front of these issues - the various findings AND their related solutions.