The search for talent is an ongoing global problem in developed countries. In the USA and Japan firms are expanding their perusal for recruitment as far as east and south Asia, whilst Germany, France and the UK continue to look to Eastern Europe.
Why is there such a shortage?
Birth rates have dropped dramatically in Western Europe; many highly skilled experienced people are retiring - which has created a big gap.
How can this be problem be rectified?
Organisations could get involved with educational institutions such as universities; colleges etc., and establish training programmes. Companies could receive up-to-date information from universities, such as which subjects are most studied and which is not, where will there be a shortage? Possibly a firm or college could create a bonus-scheme to an unpopular subject to fill the gap of candidates - thus reducing deficiency in that specific disliked area.
For instance, very few young people are going into the oil and gas industry. On the other hand, providers of wind-power, bio-fuels and other types of renewable energy are part of a fast and expanding industry - but because it is a new field there is a need to sustain the workforce. Attracting and training candidates outside this industry is now essential to guarantee future continuation and success.
Organisations establishing a presence in colleges and universities
Organisations could develop a relationship with young potential candidates from universities. This would have the effect of creating a large talent pool and nurture good employment branding.
It is simply a case of locate and train. Organisations must think of the long-term future prospects of their firm and by embracing talent as their centre-point, they can propose strategies more confidently and effectively. However, it is well recognised that there is a growing gap as far as the education a graduate receives, to the skills required of industries. Perhaps firms would be sensible in agreeing to co-operate with universities and colleges to assist in the contribution of the talent-management strategy.
Training staff to cope with change
If a company trains their staff to cope with change, problem-solve, think strategically, communicate clearly and develop their staff’s technical abilities, they will ultimately win the war for talent because they will have a highly skilled workforce, which at the same time promotes their employment branding. If an organisation has a cultured pool of talent they will consequently acquire competitive benefits.
The fundamental principle is good communication between ‘the talent pool’ and the strategic executives of an organisation. When highly skilled people are retiring it is more important than ever to offer guidance, for example, perhaps, allow a young graduate the opportunity to ‘shadow’ a director thereby getting first-hand experience.
Finding and retaining talent is difficult and will get worse. Poaching other staff from companies is unsustainable and companies should think more laterally in finding new places to recruit. By developing and encouraging the training of skills, which are most lacking in candidates, a company will ultimately retain their staff and guarantee productivity.
If a specific vacancy is hard to fill, a company could consider re-training an internal employee, who will have been with the company for some time and will therefore feel secure and familiar with the culture of the company.
In conclusion, managing talent portrays a wide picture and not to be the complete responsibility of the HR department but the entire organisation. A thorough and complete undertaking to manage talent needs to be followed if companies are to weather the talent wars.