Talent retention; a growing necessity

April 11th 2023

Talent retention is a concept that is increasingly present in the organisational culture of companies. In some of them, it has even become a priority issue on their agendas as a result of aspects such as: the recent exit from the economic recession, demographic and generational changes such as the low birth rate or the growing retirement rate in recent years, the evolution of new technologies or the fact that there are "overqualified" professionals that make the world of work increasingly competitive.  

In contrast, talent management is a "modern" concept and only 28% of Spanish HR managers say that attracting and retaining talent is their main challenge.   

What does talent management mean for companies?  

It involves the need to adapt internal retention policies to a segmented group of professionals. For example, a mature professional has different needs than a middle-aged professional or one who is just starting out in his or her professional career. Therefore, when we talk about retaining talent, we should not only refer to retaining the most qualified professional or paying salaries above our competence, but to accepting diversity and being able to cover the basic needs of all employees in general, as well as providing them with "extra" benefits with which they are compensated; trust and autonomy, career promotion and performance evaluations, training plans, good compensation & benefits policies, teleworking, flexible working hours, work-life balance, engagement, employer branding or culture of values, among others.   

Likewise, a motivated employee maximises his or her potential and will generally be more productive; the greater the productivity, the greater the financial growth. If we add to this the fact that selection processes are sometimes long and very costly, human talent management in organisations should not be ignored. 

The key to engagement  

The challenges and trends in retaining talent start from the moment we recruit talent. When a selection process is initiated, a fluid communication should be established that allows the company's philosophy and culture to be conveyed. Sometimes, companies carry out selection processes in which they only focus on choosing the most complete professional or the one with the greatest potential, when in reality it is a two-way relationship; the candidate should be passionate about the mission, the project and the company. The alignment of both aspects will surely make success more likely.   

Secondly, when an employee joins the organisation, he/she should receive a good onboarding, which allows him/her to land and adapt. This aspect is often non-existent, which can lead to premature demotivation or temporariness in the position, which represents a considerable investment of time and money for the company. When these two phases are successfully overcome, it is interesting for the organisation in general, and Human Resources in particular, to establish commitment and perseverance to generate value propositions, sustainability and responsibility with its collaborators and thus achieve a good employee experience.  

In conclusion, these talent retention policies should be promoted without having negative connotations; retention does not mean "retaining by force". It is necessary to find a balance that is beneficial for both parties. On the other hand, talent management is a major innovative and transformational challenge for SMEs and multinationals, which are implementing good business practices for a good workplace. 

"If we're going to call a company 'excellent' it has to be good for everyone". Michael C. Bush, CEO of Great Place to Work. 

Lorena Casado, Operations Manager

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