Sourcing, engaging with and retaining staff is shaping up to be HR’s biggest challenge this year as it faces plummeting candidate availability. Mercer previously warned businesses of an ‘unprecedented labour shortage’ if steps were not taken to address this issue. The employee experience could be the key to success in a competitive, candidate-driven market.
Deloitte’s Global Human Capital Trends survey identified culture, or the ‘employee experience’ as one of the top priorities for HR in 2017. 80% ranked it as ‘important’ or ‘very important’ but only one fifth rated themselves as excellent. Improving your culture, engagement and experience will enhance your businesses’ ability to not only source but retain talent as concerns over the skills shortage continue.
The following strategies are the first steps towards creating a better experience for your employees and in turn improving your talent acquisition success.
Developing a culture of leadership and learning
Recent research from Deloitte found that a culture of leadership and learning enables businesses to both anticipate and respond effectively to change. An organisation that values leadership at all levels and continuous learning is also seven times more likely to manage performance issues and 10 times more likely to identify and develop leaders. The report suggests that these organisations encourage risk taking and also regard failure as a ‘learning opportunity’. The problem that most UK employers face is their failure to embrace the principles of continuous learning or training. This was further highlighted by the CIPD which has warned that the UK is ‘sleepwalking into a skills crisis’. Effective training equips employees to understand the purpose of their job and to meet performance objectives. Ongoing training is essential to attract talent to your business.
We highlighted the lack of training and digital skills as one of the 7 emerging recruitment trends in a recent article.
Offer transparency on the gender pay gap
New legislation requires all private and public sector employers with more than 250 staff to publish yearly details on their gender pay gap, affecting around 9,000 businesses. While the new rules came into force on 6th April only 5 companies so far have published details of their gender pay rates. Employers have until April 2018 to release their data. Transparency over pay rates suggests a business which promotes equality among its employees and a more authentic employer brand. However, problems over the pay gap persist. New research from Adzuna reinforces the discrepancies in pay in specific sectors. Its study found that the largest group of high earners (over £100,000) were typically educated males working in tech or finance positions. Additional solutions to close the pay gap include the introduction of flexible working, creating equal opportunities throughout the workplace and reducing bias in hiring. The data in your recruitment software will reveal any discrepancies in your company's hiring patterns.
Prioritising wellbeing must form part of the employee experience
Issues of wellbeing remain a concern for employers reflected in recent figures that suggest one third of employees with mental health issues have not felt supported by their manager in the last five years. Burnout is also a serious issue, particularly for people earning £20,000 or below according to Emolument. Over 90% of people in this category have experienced burnout at work. People working in healthcare, tourism and restaurants were identified as most susceptible but it affects people at all income levels. Including a wellness programme as part of your job offer can increase productivity by up to 13% but two thirds of companies don’t have procedures in place for supporting staff. Creating a positive working environment also affects your ability to attract talent. Over half of job seekers will turn down a position if their office space fails to meet their expectations.
Review your definition of the ‘gig economy’
Part of the issues related to burnout for low income workers is the issue of job security which consistently ranks as the top priority for job seekers. The gig economy has been the target of some criticism on this issue but approached effectively it offers a solution to the skills shortage in key areas. Fulfilling its intended role, the gig economy delivers in-demand skills to business on a fixed term basis and in doing so creates a more meaningful employee experience. Our whitepaper, The Rise Of The Gig Economy offers more insight into this subject.
Offer meaningful work
Nearly three quarters of people believe that more could be done to improve the quality of available jobs and less than 1 in 10 believe that jobs live up to meaningful or ‘fair’ standards. Offering meaningful, purposeful work will improve the employee experience and your ability to retain talent. Analyse your HR analytics to identify the source of your most successful hires and find out just why they stay with your business. Career development, meaningful work, autonomy, ongoing training and a transparent and collaborative working environment should be among the responses. Similarly, exit interviews should be carried out with all departing employees to identify underlying issues with your business culture.
Embrace AI and automation
Nearly 60% of employers believe they are ‘not ready or only ‘somewhat ready’ to respond to the challenge of creating a better employee experience. Supporting your existing process with HR technology will free up HR’s time to focus on achieving that. The data in your recruitment software will also reveal underlying patterns in your talent management strategy and identify problem areas. Contrary to fears over the wiping out of jobs, advances in automation are predicted to create more meaningful work and enhance the employee experience, which begins with talent acquisition.
Advorto’s world class recruitment software helps you to manage your entire talent recruitment system effectively, enabling HR to focus on creating a positive employee experience.
Contact us today to find out more.