Exclusive Trusted Magazine Q&A with Scott McArthur, Future Focused Consultant and Workshop Lead
How do you ensure new hires are successfully onboarded and integrated into the company culture?
Structured Onboarding Process: It starts with a well-outlined INDIVIDUALISED onboarding plan, which includes not just role and person-specific training but also immersion into the company's values, ethos, and traditions. A structured process helps in setting clear expectations and gives the new hire a sense of direction from day one.
Assigning a Mentor or Buddy: Assigning a mentor or a buddy can be invaluable. This person can help the new hire navigate the company's landscape, introduce them to key personnel, and act as a sounding board for questions or concerns that may arise.
Open Door Policy: Encouraging an open-door policy, where new hires can approach leadership or HR with questions or concerns without fear of retribution, fosters trust. It ensures that any potential issues are addressed promptly.
Feedback Mechanisms: Listening to and learning from the new start's experience is crucial. Regular check-ins during the initial weeks and months can provide insights into their onboarding experience. These feedback sessions act as a motivator, making them feel wanted and heard, rather than just another resource.
Inclusive Team Activities: Organising team lunches, zooms, outings, or workshops can fast-track the integration process. Such activities allow new hires to interact with colleagues in an informal setting, fostering camaraderie and a sense of belonging.
Continuous Learning Opportunities: Providing platforms where they can continue to learn, not just about their role but about the company, industry, soft skills and future literacy helps in solidifying their understanding and commitment to the company culture and its future.
How does your talent acquisition strategy tie into your employee retention strategy? What role does talent development play in this?
Talent acquisition and employee retention are two sides of the same coin.
Alignment with Company Culture: At the heart of both talent acquisition and retention is a company’s culture. The values, mission, and vision of a company are key selling points when attracting talent. But they’re also pivotal in retaining them. Employees stay where they feel a sense of belonging and alignment with the company’s ethos.
Growth Opportunities: When recruiting, it’s vital to highlight the company's professional growth opportunities. This not only attracts ambitious, future literate candidates but also keeps them engaged over time. No one wants to feel stagnant in their role.
Feedback Loops: During the acquisition phase, it’s crucial to communicate the feedback mechanisms in place. Prospective employees want to know that their voices will be heard. Regular feedback and open communication channels can significantly boost retention rates.
Talent Development’s Role: This plays an instrumental role in bridging acquisition and retention. By continuously investing in employees through training, skill development, and mentorship programs, companies signal a commitment to their professional, personal growth and future prospects.
This investment acts as a magnet during the recruitment phase. When potential employees see that a company is dedicated to nurturing its staff and their futures, it becomes a significant pull factor. Then, once on board, these development opportunities help employees to evolve, take on new challenges, and feel valued, significantly reducing the chances of them seeking opportunities elsewhere.
A holistic approach to talent strategy sees acquisition, retention, and development as interconnected processes, each reinforcing the other. It’s a cycle where the right acquisition leads to higher retention rates, and continuous development ensures both are sustained.
How do you see talent acquisition evolving in the next 5-10 years?
Technology and AI: Automation, AI and Digital Twins will be at the forefront. From screening CVs to conducting initial round interviews, the power of AI will be harnessed to increase efficiency. Advanced algorithms can predict candidate success rates, making the hiring process more data-driven. Digital twins can offer a real-time, comprehensive simulation of an employee's lifecycle, enabling companies to optimize recruitment strategies and tailor retention initiatives based on predictive insights.
Emphasis on Soft Skills: With rapid technological advancements, the skills required for specific jobs might change. However, soft skills like adaptability, resilience, critical thinking, and interpersonal communication will remain in high demand.
Diversity and Inclusion: Organizations will significantly emphasise creating diverse workplaces that attract cognitively diverse people. This won’t just be about ticking a box; companies will actively see the business and innovation benefits of having a diverse team.
Remote Work and Global Talent Pools: The post-pandemic era has made it clear that remote work is here to stay in some capacity. This opens up global talent pools, allowing companies to hire from anywhere, breaking the geographical barriers.
Continuous Learning and Upskilling: As the pace of change accelerates, companies will look for candidates who demonstrate a commitment to continuous learning and future literacy. Future literacy can empower companies to better anticipate evolving workforce needs and preferences, resulting in more informed recruitment and tailored retention strategies. Moreover, organizations will also invest more in upskilling their current workforce.
Data Privacy: With the use of AI and predictive analytics, there will also be a significant concern and emphasis on data privacy and ethical use of data in the talent acquisition process.