CIELWorks 2020, a research study on the latest trends in the talent market says, the biggest recruiting challenge faced by companies is talent availability. The largest cohort in the talent market today is the millennials. Hence, each organisation must do its best to attract the millennials towards them.
Most senior managers and entrepreneurs of the day are people born in the 70’s or earlier. They struggle to relate with the thinking of the millennial employees and hence, haven’t been able to adapt their work processes and policies to suit the real context of their organisation.
The same survey points out, there is a pronounced misalignment between the needs of the hour and the practices on ground in 37% of cases. That’s a huge number! So, we need to get our act in talent attraction right.
Young professionals these days say, they would work in 6-8 companies through their career. When we asked the same question 20 years ago, the answer was 2-5. This reflects the changes in our socio-economic conditions and the norms around them. We see our young people to be optimistic about the opportunities ahead; they are willing to walk away from the current job if it does not match their idea of the ideal work life. They want to pursue multiple goals in life with similar levels of passion and zest; they do not want to trade one for the other in a big way. They learn and adapt technology at ease; gather information from multiple peer groups and experts around the world. There are many such unique characteristics that signify our young men and women.
The organisation has to reflect and revamp its processes and systems for aspects like flexibility, tech at work, transparency, agility or cycle time. Right from crafting the job description, design of the company website, its activities on social media, and the leadership behaviours to practices for rewards and recognition, feedback, performance management and talent development, we have to make each of them attractive for the young colleagues.
In the 90’s and early 2000’s employees did not expect a personalised approach from their employer. Personalised messages on special events such as birthday and work anniversary were not the order of the day. Celebration of events and achievements were infrequent. Most organisations did not feel the need of holding elaborate events to recognise performers on a weekly or monthly basis. Performance feedback as a formal process was normally annual and salary raises and promotion were undifferentiated to a large extent.
In 2020, we have to certainly personalise our attention on each employee, right from the time we start engaging him or her as a potential employee till the person leaves us. Personalised messages on special days of one’s life aren’t enough. We have to craft a personalised performance feedback and recognition; personalise the development plan, career path and specific coaching inputs on a periodic basis in a formal manner. This is a big demand on the HR team and the line manager.
The managers may need specific training to recognise the needs and aspirations of their direct reports and fulfil them effectively. Apart from training the managers, top leaders have to revamp their systems and processes which guide and facilitate the line managers to deliver a personalised experience to their team members.
As our customers are looking for speed and quality in everything they get from us, our team members expect no less in terms of speed and quality. So we need to sensitise all the internal stakeholders in our business to deliver their response and support to everyone in the company with speed and accuracy. We have to build a rigorous performance management system that defines performance measures clearly, facilitates performance measurement and asks managers to provide their coaching inputs with a predetermined frequency.
Thirdly, we need to communicate our vision clearly to our people, update them about our progress and co-create a clear path for the organisation ahead. Leadership behaviour shows the way in delivering quality internally as well as externally with speed and accuracy. This is easier said than done because it is not easy to craft a clear path for the future and communicate the same widely. This is the most challenging task for an organisation.
We need to adapt our thinking and tweak our systems and processes; align all the managers on the transformation. Done well, social media will be abuzz with positive sentiments, word-of-mouth publicity will grow and the draw to a vacant position in our company will be huge.
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