Talent Retention Starts With Accurate Recruitment

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The process of retaining your much needed talented people begins before you have even recruited them.

talent retention

Retaining your talented people hinges on getting your hiring decision right at the very start of their work-life with your organisation. Recruiting to retain is the first step of a three stage strategy to keep your most valuable resource – your people. Matching pre-hire expectations to actual reality can be a tricky balancing act, especially if you haven’t made that decision on the basis of a robust job role benchmark and cultural fit.

Next comes the vulnerable onboarding period. This is a time of upheaval and uncertainty for everyone, leaving your new starter potentially susceptible to questioning their move. If they don’t feel that they fit in, they will walk out, leaving you to begin all over again.

Which brings us to how do you measure recruitment success? At acceptance of offer? Surviving week one? Made it to 6 months? Or is the correct measure of success that your new hires are wise old hands many years down the line?

Develop a retention-focused approach to recruitment

  1. Benchmarking
  2. Onboarding
  3. Measure and review

Benchmarking is key to attracting and retaining the right people

Benchmark your job roles to create an accurate and up-to-date profile of the traits, behaviour and skills each role requires. Inaccurate job descriptions that are recycled time after time can affect the quality of appropriate applicants for the role.

Instead, bring your stakeholders together to identify what they believe is necessary for long-term success. This informs your job adverts and enables interviewers to ask relevant behaviour based questions. Use this benchmark to assess candidates against the job, rather than against each other to pick a ‘winner’. The end result is a successful candidate for the role who has not been missold the job.

Bespoke onboard new hires for long-term retention

Onboarding is not about who prefers what coffee cup or getting logged into an email account. Onboarding is about developing relationships. These early weeks are critical to the long-term success of your new hire. In fact, this period should begin well before your new hire starts work. The onboarding process should kick off from the point of offer and be based on the individual needs of your new recruit. If you have assessed your candidate against a benchmark, you will be able to create a comprehensive bespoke plan that aims to fill identified skills gaps, shows where they fit within a team and sets expectations for performance and working with their peers.

According to a recent survey, around 30% of new employees leave within their first six months. These early weeks are among the most important that any employee will ever have in your organisation. Failure to invest sufficient time and resources into the process will put a successful long-term outcome in serious jeopardy.

What’s an accurate measurement of recruitment success?

  • How much you spend?
  • The number of new hires you make?
  • The number of hires who make it beyond six months?
  • The value of your homegrown talent who provide stability, loyalty, and are great role models for people who join you at any stage in their career?

Striving for optimum employee retention isn’t a ‘nice to have’. Accurate recruitment and continual development reduces risk and cost. It creates stability in a workplace culture that people are proud to call theirs. Investing in recruitment and development pays healthy dividends when it comes to long-term employee retention.

Talent retention need not be a struggle

Retaining talent in your organisation need not be an uphill battle. It does however, require a focus on developing a positive workplace culture where people feel able to thrive and their contribution is valued. Central to this is supporting HR teams and leaders to create frameworks which are relevant to the organisation, easily understood and competently implemented.

We help organisations of every size and sector, from the start-up to the well-established, to create and optimise their talent retention strategies. Talk to our team of expert consultants and coaches to learn how we can do this for you.

"A positive workplace culture improves teamwork, raises morale, increases productivity and efficiency, and enhances retention of the workforce."

Dr. Pragya Agarwal, Forbes 2018

Contact us to learn more.

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