How do you attract hardworking, experienced knowledgeable and skilled employees? While it’s essential to have a solid business plan, even the best-laid plans will fall apart at the seams if you don’t have the right workforce to implement it.
Although the question may appear simple and straightforward enough, it is not at all easy to answer.
First, let’s take a look at the immediate issue of how to hire and keep top talent, and then we’ll briefly cover challenges facing HR Departments today and the high cost of employee turnover.
How to Hire and Keep Top Talent
Here are five strategies to recruit and retain top talent for your business:
- See things from an employee’s POV.
There are many reasons why somebody would be willing to work for you besides a paycheck. These reasons include earning more than the rising cost of living, getting the right benefits, navigating a short commute, and working in a suitable business environment.
While there’s not much you can do about the commute, there is quite a bit you can do to offer a fair salary, provide a company’s benefits package that will give you an edge in hiring and retaining talent, and provide an attractive business environment.
- Improve how managers work with staff.
The primary gripes employees have about their workplace are bad bosses. In an effort to coax more productivity out of disengaged workers, first-line supervisors can often be too verbally aggressive. Instead of motivating employees, they actually alienate employees from the company’s mission. Only too often, conscientious managers and supervisors are totally unaware of how their coercive tactics affect employee turnover. The way to resolve this unnecessary conflict is to have an effective manager training program to improve retention.
- Recognize high-performance behavior.
Everyone has a basic human need to feel recognized and appreciated for the work that they do. It’s important to have incentive programs that recognize the work of high-performing employees.
- Be open to worker’s suggestions.
How do you get employees to be happily engaged and productive? Ask them to contribute innovative ideas on workflow. By encouraging employees to participate in designing workflow, they feel a sense of ownership in the business process.
- Provide career opportunities.
People are most productive when they believe that they are creating a better future for themselves. Employees are not focused on just doing a job, but are interested in building a meaningful career. By offering career building opportunities to increase knowledge and skills, employees feel that they are doing more than just earning a paycheck. They feel that they are creating a better future for themselves by increasing their value in the workplace.
Challenges Facing HR Departments Today
Many HR departments are often constrained by archaic policies that frustrate their ability to find and keep good managers and employees.
Two of the biggest challenges they face are adapting to a world where technology is pushing the pace of progress and working with a new generation of younger employees with different value systems.
Talent Distribution in Higher Education
The more specialized your industry, the harder it will be to find people with the technical skills that you need. This demand for a more educated technological workforce has resulted in an interesting global sociological trend.
Often technology companies find the talent they need among students from Asian countries who have been sent by affluent parents to study at some of the top schools in the United States. Due to the lack of sufficient technical infrastructure in their own country and high competition for existing technical jobs, they are highly motivated to take on some of the most demanding courses available at American universities. They believe that if they cannot find work in their own countries when they go back, they can at least hope to be able to emigrate to a developed country to leverage their rare and valuable skill sets.
Meanwhile, only a minority of American students have this level of passion for studying demanding fields like Calculus, Computer Science, and Engineering. Instead, they prefer to study humanities, science or business. While, of course, these are perfectly respectable majors, they are not aligned with the growing needs of a world with an increased focus on information technology.
Changing of the Guards
Another challenged faced by HR departments is that the new generation, often classified as Millennials, have completely different attitudes about work compared to Baby Boomers, who are now heading toward retirement. This attitude often conflicts with the hard realities of getting things done in the workplace. For instance, millennials often place a high emphasis on getting comprehensive instructions on what to do and working on projects with a team. Meanwhile, most workplace policies and procedures are still structured the way they used to be before the turn of the century.
The High Cost of Employee Turnover
It takes a tremendous amount of effort to hire the right person in the first place. However, all of these gains can quickly be lost if your company has a high employee turnover. So it’s not enough just to learn how to hire talents; it’s equally important to learn how to retain it.
It is estimated that it takes an average of $10,000 a year to replace an average employee in most businesses. In some industries, which require highly specialized workers, the cost can be far more.