7 Keys to Attracting and Retaining Talent Globally

April 4, 20168:14 am3196 views

Candidate motivations for changing jobs vary by geography and generation, according to a global study from ManpowerGroup Solutions, the world’s largest RPO provider, part of ManpowerGroup.

Key findings from the study are available in new paper titled, “Below the Surface: Emerging Global Motivators and Job Search Preferences.” In addition to highlighting the differences and similarities between job seekers around the world, the paper also provides “7 Keys to Attracting and Retaining Talent Globally.”

“As the talent shortage grows, making it more difficult to find candidates with the right skills, businesses should understand exactly what job seekers look for,” said Kate Donovan, Senior Vice President of ManpowerGroup Solutions and Global RPO President.

“People with in-demand skills are making different career choices today based on lifestyle preferences and beliefs, which complicates traditional recruitment models and forces companies to think differently about their recruitment and workforce management strategies.”

ManpowerGroup Solutions surveyed nearly 4,500 job seekers in key global markets to identify trends and market-based differences around job search practices and motivators for change.

The results can help employers find better ways to attract and retain the world’s top talent. While there are a number of universal motivators among candidates around the world, the survey results identified some unique differences between markets and generations.Talent attraction and retention_Manpower Survey_11

“A person’s job role is an important differentiator in developed markets – as high as 76 percent in the UK – but in markets like Mexico and China, it’s as low as 31 percent,” said Jim McCoy, Vice President of ManpowerGroup Solutions and RPO Practice Lead.

“So what’s important for candidates in countries like Mexico and China? It still comes down to compensation – 73 and 81 percent, respectively, compared to just 27 percent in the UK.”

The regional differences do not end there. Job seekers in China rank company reputation highly; Mexico shows very little preference towards industry. Both use social media to research their potential workplaces much more so than developed markets.

Several generational differences were revealed in the study, including Gen Y’s desire for better onboarding, upward mobility and the need for employers to value corporate social responsibility.

These findings point to the importance of several emerging best practices among employers, which are shared in the paper.Talent attraction and retention_Manpower Survey

“From bold new strategies that involve collaboration within industries, to old-fashioned boots-on-the ground tactics, employers need to customize their outreach to attract and retain the best talent across the globe,” McCoy added.

When it comes to motivating candidates to switch jobs, however, compensation gets their attention — an increase in pay is twice as powerful as type of work. The exception to this rule is in the UK and Australia, where type of work exceeds compensation as a reason to switch jobs.

Employees are often expected to be available 24-7 to their employers and work-life balance has become a challenge for a majority of the workforce.

As a result, employees’ relationship with their jobs is shifting. While it was previously a means to an end (e.g., weekends, vacations, retirement), a job is now a more integrated part of a holistic way of life.

See: Successful Companies Embrace Modern Compensation Practices to Retain Key Talent: Research Reveals

Top 7 Keys for Attracting and Retaining Talent Globally

Candidates around the world are remarkably similar in the career challenges they face, their motivations to pursue new opportunities and their job search methods.

56 percent of global candidates identified “type of work” as one of the top three factors in making career decisions — overtaking “compensation” at 54 percent. That means nearly six out of ten candidates believe that what they do is as important as how much they get paid.

  1. Be Candidate Driven

Effective recruiting in a global environment means tailoring the message by country and customizing the technology to the generation. For example, recruiting and training entry-level workers in China will be vastly different from attracting new mid-level managers in the US.

Based on the survey data, Chinese candidates will be largely motivated by compensation and more likely to be comfortable with video interviewing technologies. Mid-level American managers will want information about work/life balance and expect one-on-one interviews with hiring managers.

  1. Improve Onboarding for Gen Y Hires

If companies want to retain the Gen Y hires, employers must improve the onboarding process. Normally reactive managers focused on filling empty positions need to properly get the new hires up to speed, set the expectations right and clearly identify the path for advancement. Otherwise, capable new hires may defect to companies promising a shorter, clearer pathway or higher compensation levels.

  1. Good Recruiting Practices Outweigh Self-Reliance

Candidates will respond to recruiters if the opportunities are customized and tailored to their interests. Good recruiting practices include broad data mining to identify candidates with the right skills, yet there is no substitute for doing one’s homework.

Good recruiters quickly become experts in the specifics and nuances of their industries then leverage personal phone outreach and network through industry bodies.

  1. Do Not Abandon Traditional Outreach Strategies

Although job boards are prevalent and widely used, do not abandon traditional outreach strategies — especially in rural areas or for high-volume roles like call centres and manufacturing. Posting to seek and social media was effective in urban areas, but newspaper ads, flyers and radio spots were far more effective in rural locations.

In high-volume cases like recruiting for distribution centres in the US, calling churches, hanging flyers in supermarkets, conducting in-person information sessions and other “boots on the ground” efforts proved successful in reaching people with limited access to technology or time spent online.

  1. Build a Talent Pipeline

While a talent pool can be stagnant, a talent pipeline is fluid and active. A pipeline is a conduit to an ever-changing mix of qualified potential hires. Employers need talent pipelines that engage with tens of thousands of candidates on a continuous basis. Some companies are creating them on their own. Others are combining forces with industry competitors.

Still others are using talent hubs directly linked to Google with millions of digitized CVs optimized for effective search and match with open positions. Employers need to consider which of these options will work best for their organization.

  1. Be Transparent About Compensation

Few companies use compensation as a means of differentiating them from their competition for talent. Employers can level the playing field by increasing transparency about compensation and highlighting other important motivators like type of work, opportunity for advancement, schedule flexibility, geographic location and brand reputation to differentiate one company’s employer value proposition from the next.

  1. Be Cognizant of New Technology

Studies show candidates usage and preferences for the use of video technologies or Smartphone apps to make the recruitment process more efficient lags behind the industry buzz.  Even today, many company websites are not yet mobile friendly. But the usage of apps for application submittal is bound to evolve as Gen Y’s become more dominant in the workforce.

In conclusion

For global corporations and other employers with overseas hiring needs, the lesson is clear: global candidate motivators and preferences may be similar but it is the differences that really matter. HR professionals who dig below the surface and resist the impulse to take a homogenized approach to talent recruitment and retention will have the competitive advantage in today’s global marketplace.

Also read: Key Trends Shaping Talent Landscape in 2016: Randstad Reports

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