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Thursday, 30 June 2016 11:16

The simple reasons companies lose top talent

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No matter how good the honeymoon, the reality of working inside even the most desirable organisations is that there is often mundane, repetitive work to do, and lack of automated or mobile systems to do it. It soon makes the grass look greener elsewhere.

Human resources (HR) has a very important role in finding, training and retaining talent:

  • Attract and retain the best talent – Plan and match skill levels to project pipeline and requirements to recruit and onboard the right people.
  • Operate on a strategic level – Use integrated perspective of HR, finance and projects to extend influence beyond human resources functions.
  • Respond with agility – Make changes to the model and execute new organisational structures, processes and reporting without coding.
  • Nurture and develop employees – Ensure comprehensive support for all aspects of your hire-to-retire cycle and payroll processes.

But seeking and securing the best in the current "talent war" is getting increasingly difficult unless HR is at the forefront of automated human resources solutions. And being able to manage talent to keep them both productive and dedicated is the key to a successful organisation.

iTWire spoke to Chris Tithof, Unit4’s channel director Australia and New Zealand. Unit4 is a global leader in enterprise applications that empower people to do their jobs better. It has a suite of HR applications for staff engagement, automated HR processes,  people planning and managing change.

You talk about minutiae and details bogging down an organisation.

The risk is that if the administrative burden is being felt, and the problem is not handled correctly, chances are talented employees that the organisation has worked hard to win, will begin to feel taken for granted or worse still forgotten. In this case, the enterprise stands to lose valuable resources — people they have trained, then disenfranchised  to their competitors.

Surely removing the administrative burden solution is not just HR’s bailiwick?

HR is about being people-centric, not client-centric as the rest of the organisation is. It is up to them to take a leading role to build the organisation of tomorrow. Naturally, organisations tend to focus on what makes sales!

As HR grows and expands, it has an influence across the organisational structure, it tends to follow a predictable maturity model. In the early stages, HR leaders begin to drive "purpose and productivity” for all staff. This eventually leads to the drive to empower employees with “self-driving” technology that puts HR’s contributions at more of a strategic level.

Organisations that want to be ahead of the curve need to automate processes within performance and talent management as much as possible.

How does HR achieve this?

Moving HR from an administrative function to where HR needs to be in today’s talent-first market is not easy. HR should be an advisory office with strategic impact on securing empowerment and engagement of current and prospective employees.

There are common warning signs when an organisation’s HR function has to get more proactive and automated. When they struggle to:

  • React quickly enough to changes in the market;
  • Drive organisational change to capture new lines of business;
  • Grow the emotional commitment of your best employees;
  • Communicate common goals and a sense of urgency to all employees; and
  • Unify your global workforce, helping employees collaborate across distance and generations.

Predicting what is coming next while driving strategic and organisational change to seek, gain and nurture top-tier talent is far more achievable with the full power of the automated self-service HR model behind the organisation.

What do employees want?

The first business goal should be to set a clear career path structure and easily accessible information on job requirements. This helps employees stay engaged because they see not only a future for themselves within the enterprise but also the steps they need to take to get there.

Employees succeed when they feel trusted enough to act autonomously and part of a winning team. Therefore, new platforms for social collaboration get them motivated and facilitate targeted communications on business priorities.

HR finds the best aspect of self-service platforms and portals is that it breaks the dependency on IT. No more waiting to fit into IT's busy schedule or delay their time critical projects. Essential time can be saved if essential functions can be handled via say, a drag and drop interface. Suddenly workflows, access levels, and hierarchic relations among many other details are be corrected automatically whenever the employee is granted a corresponding change in organisational responsibilities.

Business looks to automation to reduce costs and be more efficient. Does investing in an automated HR platform makes sense?

As business logic has developed, so should HR platforms move beyond the legacy systems in place. The next generation of self-service HR software is designed for accessibility everywhere and should be intuitive for everyday users. By utilising tailored, cloud-based deployments, organisations can keep ahead of the sudden shifts in the marketplace. Including cutting off competitors who offer seductive employee packages and the promise of rapid advancement. Deploying a self-service HR model allows them to win and retain top-tier talent.

Being able to see further down the road, allows for better strategic decision to be made. That’s what self-service automation of HR functions can accomplish, they increase the visibility of the enterprise's actual costs, as well as what individual employees need at a certain moment.

Moving swiftly before windows of opportunity slam shut ensure organisations become the kind of employer that talent will seek out. This level of organisational change doesn't have to be painful, but it does require a sustained commitment to developing your HR department along the common maturity model.


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Ray Shaw

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Ray Shaw ray@im.com.au  has a passion for IT ever since building his first computer in 1980. He is a qualified journalist, hosted a consumer IT based radio program on ABC radio for 10 years, has developed world leading software for the events industry and is smart enough to no longer own a retail computer store!

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