Managing talent in a growing economy
The economy is starting to pick up and the race for talent has begun. At a recent Ceridian networking event, 50 HR Directors and industry experts heard Angela O’Connor, Founder & CEO of The HR Lounge, reflect on what she believes will be the key strategies and activities HR teams need to think about as we move into a growing economy.
Angela’s experience in HR spans over 30 years with roles as Chief People Officer at the National Policing Improvement Agency, HR Director at the Crown Prosecution Service and Head of HR at three London local authorities. Angela has received many awards for her work in HR including three HR Director of the year awards. She was the first president of the PPMA (Public Sector People Managers’ Association) in the organisation’s history.
Here are our top ten take outs on what Angela discussed that will help your organisation as we move out of recession and into growth.
- Don’t cut back on employees. The temptation during periods of poor economy is to cut back on employees. Organisations who have been inflexible and treated their colleagues poorly during the recession will suffer most as external opportunities open up.
- We now have multi-generational workplaces so you need to be aware of the composition of your organisation and the nuances of the different generations. A recent article in Forbes magazine gives readers some of the different generations viewpoints; it also poses some interesting thoughts on how to maximise employee engagement.
- Technology is increasing in the workplace with mobile and HR gamification getting more popular. As the use of smart phones increase and improve our daily lives, employees are looking to do more work activity on their phones.
- The use of social media in the workplace is rising – brave organisations are opening up social internally. But let’s be clear, your customers, suppliers and colleagues are talking about your company in social today anyway, whether good or bad. Your employees can help to raise the awareness and reputation of your business especially on LinkedIn and Twitter.
- Websites like Glassdoor will gain ground (a “Trip Advisor” rating websites for employees to comment freely on employers). Where employee surveys give insight into your business, contributors to Glassdoor can be brutally honest, for good or bad!
- Portfolio careers will rise. Workers are looking for more flexibility than ever before. Only recently, the use of zero hour contracts got bad press. As more research has been done, it has become apparent that some (particularly younger) workers strongly prefer the flexibility. Some of the younger generations are less loyal to single companies.
- Your business objectives should come first and your talent strategy needs to underpin it – you need to ask yourself what you are here for. You then should use both qualitative and quantitative data to help you unlock intelligence of how to use your people better.
- Managers are key! You need to train your managers extensively – when interviewed, more people leave a job because of their managers than for any other reason. Manager training and support has been one casualty in many companies during poor economic conditions, but this needs to be restarted quickly.
- Most people want to make a difference – when asked openly, only very few people are really disengaged from what’s happening around them. We all want people who enjoy their job, so the effort we take to find out how engaged they are, and to then do something about it, is critical.
- Find an individual’s passion, and ignite it. Too often we rush by in the hectic pace of the workplace, and never really find out what an individual can really contribute, if only asked, or allowed the space to do so.
At Ceridian, we have tried to put a number of these ideas into practice ourselves. We are pushing hard on enabling all of our technologies to be “mobile friendly” and have launched mobile payslips for all our technologies. We have recently redone our own website, to make it responsive on mobile devices. We are upgrading all of our analytics, HR and workforce management applications to be more accessible on mobiles devices. We are making social tools available across our company, and are going to build them in to our future products too. We spend a substantial amount of effort trying to make our colleagues realise the extent to which we appreciate their efforts to do special things for our customers.
What do you do in your company? We’d love to hear from you!